Thursday 9 December 2021

Review: How to Save a Life by Lynette Rice

 More than 15 years after its premiere, Grey's Anatomy remains one of the most beloved dramas on television in the US and the UK. It continues to win its time slot and has ranked in the Top 20 most watched shows in primetime for most of its 17-season run. It currently averages more than 9 million viewers each week.

Now it's time to hear from the people who made the show happen.

A cultural touchstone, it introduced the unique voice and vision of Shonda Rhimes, it made Ellen Pompeo, Sandra Oh and T.R. Knight household names, and injected words and phrases into the cultural lexicon like 'McDreamy,' and 'you're my person.' And the behind-the-scenes drama has always been just as juicy as what was happening in front of the camera, from the high-profile firing of Isaiah Washington to Katherine Heigl's fall from grace and Patrick Dempsey's shocking death episode. The show continued to haemorrhage key players, but the beloved hospital series never skipped a beat.

Lynette Rice's How to Save A Life takes a deep dive into the show's humble start, while offering exclusive intel on the behind-the-scenes culture, the most heartbreaking departures and the more polarizing plotlines. It's the perfect gift for all Grey's Anatomy stans out there.

Review: I was sent a copy of this book for review but I bought a copy of the audio so that I could listen to this on my commute to work. I want to start out by saying that I think this book would be better enjoyed in either print or eBook form because the majority of it is done in interview style and the audiobook does not change narrators for each person being interviewed. The audiobook has one narrator and she does a great job but I think that at times it was harder to distinguish between who was being interviewed and just which question they were answering. The physical book also has photographs in it which were great to be able to flick through. Often audiobooks do have supplementary material but unfortunately this one did not. 

This claims to be a book for Grey's stans and I do think that it is a great companion to the long running series. I definitely had the desire to go back and start the whole thing from the beginning again whilst reading this book. The in depth analysis of how it got off the ground and where it all began is really good. I will say though, if you are a super fan, there will not be a lot of new information in here for you. A lot of the information focuses on the behind the scenes and the gossip side of thing, most of which came out in the tabloids or were mentioned on Shonda Rhimes's book The Year of Yes. Therefore a warning to all super fans out there that this will be a lot of repeated information. 

What this book definitely does give though is a sense of nostalgia and a look back at where the series has come from, the barriers it had to break and the way in which the beginning would look very different were it to begin filming now. I would have loved to have seen as much time and depth given to these later series as to the first couple of series, the way they are written about in the book because for me, the show has gone from strength to strength and I really love the things they are covering in these later series. The book does touch on the most recently completed series and how it deals with covid but I would have loved some more time spent on that and how challenging it was to create and write, never mind record during this time. 

Overall it was an enjoyable listen and definitely worth my time but I think it could be elevated to a great read with just some minor alterations. 

To order your copy now, just click the link: UK or US

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