Synopses & Reviews
On the day he turned thirty, John starred in America's number-one movie (Animal House
), starred in the number-one late-night show (Saturday Night Live
), and had recorded the number-one album (Briefcase Full of Blues
). All from a guy who was never supposed to make it out from behind the cash register of his family's Chicago diner. How did this Albanian immigrant's son capture a nation's imagination and come to embody all the glory and tragedy of the American dream? It was one high-price, high-speed, short-lived wild ride.
Belushi is a whirlwind of a book, filled with never-before-seen photos and provocative, intensely personal testimonials by just about every major comedic figure of the last half century. Here is the remarkable and raucous story of a larger-than-life figure who danced out at the precipice of American fame.
"Through brief sound bites from friends, family members, fellow comedians and entertainment industry big-shots, this surprisingly touching oral history of one of the best-loved American comics portrays John Belushi as a rags-to-riches hero who became a larger-than-life star before overdosing on heroin and cocaine at the Chateau Marmont in 1982. Pisano, Belushi's teenage sweetheart turned wife, compiled the book from a series of interviews conducted shortly after her 33-year-old husband's death, and charts the Belushi myth, as told by Dan Aykroyd, Carrie Fisher and Al Franken, among many others, from John's Chicago childhood through after his death. Highlights include Belushi's role as the Blue Fairy in a High School pageant, in which he was characterized as 'a man who did not resemble a woman'; the evolution of the Blues Brothers from Saturday Night Live skit to major label band; and the harrowing accounts of Belushi's final weeks. Readers will be entertained and moved by this deeply personal account of a talented and complicated man. Family snapshots as well as behind-the-scenes photos complement the story." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"It's a humorous, nostalgic show-biz-trivia goldmine....Mostly testimonial stuff, to be sure, but also the collected reactions to Belushi's drug-overdose death an often-bitter, hugely disappointed set of remarks about his final days." Booklist
The scores of people who loved and loathed Belushi and loaned him money tell how the chubby kid from kindergarten ended up being America's best buddy. Photos, lists, timelines, and other ephemera lay out the heart and soul of the comedian.
About the Author
Judith Belushi Pisano is the author of the memoir Samurai Widow
and coauthor and designer of Titters, Titters 101, Blues Brothers: Private
, and The Mom Book
. She lives on Martha's Vineyard.
Tanner Colby is a writer. He lives in New York City.