Reviews for The Answer Is ...

by Alex Trebek

Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A memoir from the beloved host of Jeopardy.In brief chapters copiously illustrated with photographs, Trebek steers clear of deep introspection in favor of amusing anecdotes and fond recollections of a life he insists was not particularly exciting. Though the book was clearly prompted by a 2019 diagnosis of stage 4 pancreatic cancer, which the author notes, with typical understatement, has taken a toll on me, he doesn't dwell on his illness. Throughout the book, the tone is upbeat and infused with gratitude and humor. Trebek tells pleasant stories about the illicit distillery his father ran in the basement of the Sudbury, Ontario, hotel where he was a chef; the scrapes the author got into at a Catholic boarding school; the advent of his famous mustache and the repercussions when he precipitously shaved it off; and the jokes played on him while he was working on a newscast at the CBC. Trebek's firm sense of what he believes is mostly public knowledge, and its clear that much of his personal life is off-limits. Of his parents' difficult divorce, he writes that they were ill-suited, and he only provides a few sentences about the kind ofresentment he felt toward his mother for concealing for years the birth of a half sibling born after his parents' divorce. Jeopardy fans will be pleased to find that much of the narrative covers some of the shows memorable moments, including Trebek's musings on some of the big winners, comic interactions with contestants, and lists of celebrities who could have made it as contenders on regular Jeopardy rather than the easier celebrity versione.g., Michael McKean, Jodie Foster, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Aaron Rodgers. Readers will likely come away from the memoir feeling even more comfortable with the author than they already did.An amiable, enjoyable series of glimpses into the life of an avuncular figure. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A memoir from the beloved host of Jeopardy. In brief chapters copiously illustrated with photographs, Trebek steers clear of deep introspection in favor of amusing anecdotes and fond recollections of a life he insists “was not particularly exciting.” Though the book was clearly prompted by a 2019 diagnosis of stage 4 pancreatic cancer, which the author notes, with typical understatement, “has taken a toll on me,” he doesn't dwell on his illness. Throughout the book, the tone is upbeat and infused with gratitude and humor. Trebek tells pleasant stories about the illicit distillery his father ran in the basement of the Sudbury, Ontario, hotel where he was a chef; the scrapes the author got into at a Catholic boarding school; the advent of his famous mustache and the repercussions when he precipitously shaved it off; and the jokes played on him while he was working on a newscast at the CBC. Trebek's firm sense of what he believes is mostly public knowledge, and it’s clear that much of his personal life is off-limits. Of his parents' difficult divorce, he writes that they were “ill-suited,” and he only provides a few sentences about the “kind of…resentment” he felt toward his mother for concealing for years the birth of a half sibling born after his parents' divorce. Jeopardy fans will be pleased to find that much of the narrative covers some of the show’s memorable moments, including Trebek's musings on some of the big winners, comic interactions with contestants, and lists of celebrities who could have made it as contenders on “regular” Jeopardy rather than the easier celebrity version—e.g., Michael McKean, Jodie Foster, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Aaron Rodgers. Readers will likely come away from the memoir feeling even more comfortable with the author than they already did. An amiable, enjoyable series of glimpses into the life of an avuncular figure. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

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