Belushi: A Biography
Tanner Colby, Judy Belushi-Pisano. Rugged Land Books, $29.95 (288pp) ISBN 978-1-59071-048-7
Through brief sound bites from friends, family members, fellow comedians and entertainment industry big-shots, this surprisingly touching oral history of one of the best-loved American comics portrays John Belushi as a rags-to-riches hero who became a larger-than-life star before overdosing on heroin and cocaine at the Chateau Marmont in 1982. Pisano, Belushi's teenage sweetheart turned wife, compiled the book from a series of interviews conducted shortly after her 33-year-old husband's death, and charts the Belushi myth, as told by Dan Aykroyd, Carrie fisher and Al Franken, among many others, from John's Chicago childhood through after his death. Highlights include Belushi's role as the Blue Fairy in a High School pageant, in which he was characterized as ""a man who did not resemble a woman;"" the evolution of The Blues Brothers from Saturday Night Live skit to major label band; and the harrowing accounts of Belushi's final weeks. Readers will be entertained and moved by this deeply personal account of a talented and complicated man. Family snapshots as well as behind-the-scenes photos complement the story.
Reviewed on: 10/31/2005