I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison
Published by HarperCollins on June 23rd 2015
Genres: Biography & Autobiography, Personal Memoirs, Entertainment & Performing Arts
Buy on Amazon
The shocking, never-before-told story of the bizarre world inside the legendary Playboy Mansion—and, finally, the secret truth about the man who holds the key—from one of the few people who truly knows: Hef’s former #1 girlfriend and star of The Girls Next Door
A spontaneous decision at age twenty-one transformed small-town Oregon girl Holly Sue Cullen into Holly Madison, Hugh Hefner’s #1 girlfriend. But like Alice’s journey into Wonderland, after Holly plunged down the rabbit hole, what seemed like a fairytale life inside the Playboy Mansion—including A-list celebrity parties and her own #1-rated television show for four years—quickly devolved into an oppressive routine of strict rules, manipulation, and battles with ambitious, backstabbing bunnies. Life inside the notorious Mansion wasn’t a dream at all—and quickly became her nightmare. After losing her identity, her sense of self-worth, and her hope for the future, Holly found herself sitting alone in a bathtub contemplating suicide.
But instead of ending her life, Holly chose to take charge of it.
In this shockingly candid and surprisingly moving memoir, this thoughtful and introspective woman opens up about life inside the Mansion, the drugs, the sex, the abuse, the infamous parties, and her real behind-the-scenes life with Bridget, Kendra, and, of course, Mr. Playboy himself.
With great courage, Holly shares the details of her subsequent troubled relationship, landing her own successful television series, and the hard work of healing, including her turn on Dancing with the Stars. A cautionary tale and a celebration of personal empowerment, Down the Rabbit Hole reminds us of the importance of fighting for our dreams—and finding the life we deserve.
One of my biggest guilty pleasures in life is celebrity memoirs. I seriously cannot get enough of sordid tell-alls. One of my other big guilty pleasures is reality TV. Down The Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison marries these two guilty pleasures into one pink book of awesome. I do not even care if people judge me for enjoying Down The Rabbit Hole, I could not set it down and I am firmly in the read what you like and F the rest camp. Madison’s book had me engaged with it, even while at a minor league baseball game -where I did take a bit of heat for reading a bright pink book about a former playboy bunny/actress instead of paying attention to the game. ALAS, I do what I want and what I want is to read Madison’s book. Rather than formatting this like my traditional reviews, I thought instead I would give you all the top five reasons why you need Down The Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison.
5 Reasons You Should Give It A Chance:
1.Find out why anyone would want to be a Playboy Bunny and model. For me, that is a huge mystery and Down The Rabbit Hole kind of solves that mystery. I was curious as to why anyone would want to be objectified like that. Turns out though that being a Bunny can help pay the bills and also bring a person to potential fame. To me, I guess the want to be like Marilyn Monroe or to be a celebrity isn’t in my wheelhouse, but after reading Holly Madison’s book, I get it now.
2. If you can’t say something nice — then come sit by me. Let’s all be real with each other here. I see this on twitter. I see this in real life. I see this at work. When someone has some really good dirt and gossip about controversy, they are immediately interesting. We want that person to come sit with us and give us the tea. (FYI – I learned this the other day – tea means gossip apparently) Anyways, Down The Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison is full of gossip about the Playboy Mansion, about the show, the girls, and Hugh Hefner. As someone who used to enjoy sites like Perez Hilton (not quite so much any more) – this book held quite a level of appeal to me. I loved getting the dirt on Holly, Bridget, and Kendra as well as Hugh Hefner.
3. Holly Madison actually has an interesting story. This might seem like basic logic. You are probably questioning me right now saying – oh why would she even write a book if her life was not interesting. Let me say that I have read my fair share of celebrity memoirs – stop judging me – and sometimes the celebrities will shy away from controversy and instead present a squeaky clean, sanitized version of events. Madison does not do that. Instead, this book rings authentic and true. Also, it is just so interesting how the reality show came about, and how she ended up as one of Hefner’s girlfriends as well as how what we saw on TV wasn’t exactly how things were in the mansion. Holly is presented as the main girlfriend and the one who actually loves Hefner. This is actually not the case. Also if you are curious, yes, Hefner has indeed slept with the various Playboy girls who live at the mansion.
4. Have you ever felt like another person has power and control over you? Chances are, you can relate to Holly Madison. This is a sordid tale where Hugh Hefner and various other men in her life wield power and control over her. It’s a story of a woman who is trapped in an unhealthy relationship. She is broken down bit by bit, made to feel ugly and unsure of herself. She is trapped by various rules as well as by her monetary situation. I think it is so easy to judge others without realizing that their situation is not entirely ideal either. I mean, maybe you look at her on The Girls Next Door and think ‘slut’ or ‘gold digger’ and that’s not okay. It’s not examining why she’s there and it’s not examining that power dynamic between Hefner and the girls. Reading this book, it actually surprised me that he allegedly thought he was the star of The Girls Next Door and that the three- Holly, Kendra, and Bridget are replaceable and that the show is really all about him. Like, lol, no, I could give a shit about some creepy old man. Instead, I watched the show because of the personality of the girls. They were the stars, not him. And how sad that he made the three feel that way. That is a bit of a digression, but this book is ultimately empowering and I think that people who have been in that trapped in a relationship situation will be able to relate to Madison, as silly or nuts as that sounds. This is just a really good book.
5. If you made a resolution or a promise to yourself that you would read more non-fiction this is a relatively easy way to keep that promise. Listen, I am that person who always makes resolutions and promises to read more of certain types of books, just to change up and diversify my reading. I also look for easy ways to keep those resolutions. This book, Down The Rabbit Hole: Curious Adventures And Cautionary Tales Of A Former Playboy Bunny, is actually an easy, engaging, fascinating read. AND IT HELPS ME TO KEEP MY RESOLUTION. I really enjoyed my time reading Madison’s memoir and would certainly recommend it to readers who are similar to me.