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Editorial Reviews

In Greta Gleissner’s gripping Something Spectacular, the former Rockette reflects on one of the darkest periods of her life, during which she struggled with bulimia while simultaneously attempting to project joy, energy, and lighthearted youthfulness as a member of one of the most iconic dance troupes of all time. Gleissner tracks her own journey through illness and back up the long path to recovery, commenting the whole way on the perceptions and expectations that led her to develop such a destructive disorder.
Actor Dina Pearlman’s strong voice telegraphs empathy and respect as she performs this deeply affecting memoir. Pearlman’s pacing and enunciation are clear and conscientious, and she deftly cements listeners’ affection for this audiobook’s remarkable author.
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Publisher's Summary

Greta Gleissner, a longtime professional dancer, dreamed her whole life of becoming a Rockette. Then she became one and she fell into the grips of a powerful eating disorder that began poison her life from the inside out. Something Spectacular is Gleissner's raw, personal chronicle of the devastating effects bulimia exacts upon her life during her time as a Rockette. As her disorder takes over, she begins to lead a dual life: happy-go-lucky on the outside; tortured by obsessive, self-destructive voices on the inside.
Immersed in an environment in which even talent is secondary to appearance, Gleissner hides her disorder by any means necessary lying, cheating, and stealing with no regard for the consequences of her actions until she hits rock bottom and is forced to face the truths behind her disease. Her intensive odyssey of self-discovery ultimately gives her the strength to reshape her self-image, embrace her sexuality, and break free of the malignant hold bulimia has on her life. The first book to give voice to the pervasive but often unaddressed problem of eating disorders in the dance industry, Something Spectacular is a gripping expos of the insidious nature of eating-related diseases and a profound account of one woman's journey toward self-acceptance and recovery.
©2012 Greta Gleissner (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By jpltpl on 08-28-15

Awful writing, abandoned halfway through

Would you try another book from Greta Gleissner and/or Dina Pearlman?

The author is a fan of assigning odd action verbs to inanimate objects - "funneling thoughts" for example, and it got to the point that I had to give up. Could not even listen to what could have been an interesting story.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Never got there.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Nicole C. on 10-09-17

A Good Memoir, Badly Narrated

The book itself was compelling - eye-opening, heartbreaking, honest, and, ultimately, hopeful. But the narrator was not a good fit at all. It almost ruined the book for me.

The narrator sounded like a midwestern 90s soccer mom, but the book was about a young woman in her 20s. It just was not a good match. The narrator also had a bad habit of inserting mirthless chuckles into the reading. Like a short, humorless laugh. It was weird and it happened a lot. By the end of the book, it was driving me crazy.

Ultimately, I’d say listen to the sample before buying. You can hear the narrator’s quirks and decide if it’s something you can get past. I got past it, but barely.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By G Etienne on 03-12-15

Super interesting if you're super interested

What did you like most about Something Spectacular?

I find stories on eating disorders very fascinating and I loved how Gretta weaved the story of her life around her bulimia. I thought the way that she perfectly described the anxiety of an ED and the control it has over someone's life was very impactful.

What did you like best about this story?

I liked that it told you the truth in a very bare way. Also, it was written in a way that made it feel like a gripping novel instead of an autobiography. Gretta knows how to tell her story as if it was playing out like a movie.

What does Dina Pearlman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

So much characterisation, every person featured in the book had a different voice which helped flesh out the story. The drama she brought to the words was so effective, it was like listening to a secret radio play at times.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Not one sitting, but I don't know many books I could read in one sitting. I couldn't wait to listen to it before and after work though and I would listen to it whilst getting ready for bed in the evening.

Any additional comments?

If you're interested in the subject matter, the book will be thoroughly enjoyable. The whole thing is about her bulimia, but it is the story of her fascinating life, so it's never dull and always exciting to listen to. If you don't really have an interest in eating disorders and their effects, I would give this one a miss as you might not become engrossed in the story.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Mrs Vanessa Jones on 07-08-17

sadly real to life with no magic wand to help pain

sadly real to life, no magic wand to help it just down to you

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