Role Models by John Waters

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Synopsis

Here, from the incomparable John Waters, is a paean to the power of subversive inspiration that will delight, amuse, enrich--and happily horrify readers everywhere.


Role Models is, in fact, a self-portrait told through intimate profiles of favorite personalities--some famous, some unknown, some criminal, some surprisingly middle-of-the-road. From Esther Martin, owner of the scariest bar in Baltimore, to the playwright Tennessee Williams; from the atheist leader Madalyn Murray O'Hair to the insane martyr Saint Catherine of Siena; from the English novelist Denton Welch to the timelessly appealing singer Johnny Mathis--these are the extreme figures who helped the author form his own brand of neurotic happiness.


Role Models is a personal invitation into one of the most unique, perverse, and hilarious artistic minds of our time.

 

About John Waters

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John Waters is an American filmmaker, actor, writer, and visual artist best known for his cult films, including Hairspray, Pink Flamingos, and Cecil B. DeMented. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland.
 
Published May 19, 2010 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 337 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment, Literature & Fiction, Arts & Photography. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Role Models

The New York Times

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John Waters’s latest exercise in autobiography proves he hasn’t been undone by the realization that he’s not outrageous anymore.

Jun 11 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

The Guardian

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Wanting to be notorious and also well-liked is an oddly forked ambition, but for 40 years now John Waters has been treading his double path.

Dec 18 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Publishers Weekly

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Waters waxes poetic about the books, artists, and individuals who have influenced him in this desultory memoir, and his selections have a fascinating range, from the novels of Ivy Compton-Burnett to Leslie Van Houten (of Charles Manson fame).

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New York Journal of Books

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The filmmaker and trash culture maven John Waters still has in his possession a junior-high-school yearbook in which one of his teachers wrote: “To someone who can, but doesn’t.” Recently arrived at the ripe old age of 64, Mr. Waters certainly could, thank you very much, and has.

May 25 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

AV Club

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A closing piece on a proposed Waters-led cult doesn’t entirely work, and “Bookworm” does little but string together appreciations for books Waters enjoys, but both feature the same precise, clever prose that highlights all his essays.

Jul 01 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Los Angeles Times

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The filmmaker writes about the figures who have inspired him, including Johnny Mathis and Leslie Van Houten.

Jul 01 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

The Telegraph

Role Models by John Waters “Dick Powell on amphetamines” is how he puts it in his new book, Role Models, a collection of essays about his idols, some living, some dead, most dating back to his teenage years, when these things were a matter of life and death.

Jul 23 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Suite 101

After close inspection Waters makes us feel somewhat sorry for a guy who made a living exploiting others.

Jan 09 2011 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Suite 101

Grammy winning singer Whitney Houston passed away on the eve of Music's Biggest Night and the giants of the music industry paid tribute to the star.

Aug 15 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Bookmarks Magazine

Amanda Katz Kansas City Star 3.5 of 5 Stars "John Waters has matured into a thoughtful, often astute essayist.

Jun 06 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

The Roanoke Times

William Burroughs called John Waters “the pope of trash.” Waters rose to fame in the 1970s and ’80s as the maker of in-your-face-aggressive films such as “Pink Flamingos,” “Female Trouble” and “Cecil B.

Aug 01 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Book Forum

Waters describes himself as "a cult filmmaker whose core audience, no matter how much I've crossed over, consists of minorities who can't even fit in with their own minorities," and Garcia lives on the fringe of the fringe.

May 21 2010 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Broad Street Review

This chapter is maybe the closest we get to the experience of a John Waters movie: It’s a journalistic documentary of outsiders— deviants who, at the same time, are broken mirrors of Waters himself, endlessly and intriguingly reflecting his inner, trashy, wonderful self.

Dec 08 2012 | Read Full Review of Role Models

Reader Rating for Role Models
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