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Book Review

Book Cover

Somewhere in Heaven
The Remarkable Story of Dana and Christopher Reeve (Hardback)


Author: Christopher Anderson
Ebury Press
RRP: £16.99, US $23.95
ISBN: 978 0 09 192766 0
Available 24 July 2008

He was a hero in every sense of the word, the star with the chiseled features who was paralysed by a freak riding accident. She was no less heroic, standing by her husband's side until his sudden death at 52. When she passed away 17 month later, a non-smoker felled by lung cancer, leaving their son to be raised by friends and family, it shocked the world. Yet for all the millions of words that have been written about their public struggles, little is known about Dana and Christopher's lives together...

Somewhere in Heaven is a sickly sweet, through rose-tinted spectacles, look at the lives of Dana and Christopher Reeve. Written in the same stomach churning style as those romance stories in UK magazines like Take a Break, this book could have been a lot more enjoyable if it weren't for the fact that you almost gag as you turn each page.

While I'm sure they were the perfect couple, and lived the perfect lives, 240 pages of this stuff is just not easy to digest. Everyone loved the couple, and there are enough short quotes from family and friends to make me think that maybe the Reeves were not, in fact mere mortals, but angels that came down to earth to enrich everyone's pathetic little lives. I don't recall one passage that hinted at anything other than a Disney-esque existence.

There are plenty of quotes and descriptions of events where the author couldn't possibly have known what was said or happened, and there are way too many quotes from celebrities gushing about the couple. But then I suppose with a title like Somewhere in Heaven I shouldn't have expected anything other than a sickly sweet tale.

This book will no doubt appeal to those that love Mills & Boon's formulaic tales. Those that want to know a little more about Christopher's early life and general background can find quite a lot here (if they can stop the bile rising up their throats) that they may not have read before.

It's a shame, because cut beneath the sugary coating and underneath is a tale that would have appealed to a much wider audience. But, sadly, because it's been written in this heartstring tugging style I suspect that somewhere in Heaven an angel, or maybe two, is being sick.


Darren Rea

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