[Book Review] Jason Priestley: A Memoir by Jason Priestley

07-jason-priestley-memoirMy favourite line from that Icona Pop song that everyone loves is,

You’re from the 70’s, but I’m a 90’s bitch.

I think I love it so much because I am a HUGE fan of the 90’s. I was seven years old in 1990 and I’m so glad I had the opportunity to grow up in a decade of boy bands, the Spice Girls and of course, Beverley Hills 90210. I remember begging my Mom to let me stay up and watch show with her on Sunday nights, even though I didn’t understand much of what was happening. I did know that Brandon and Dylan were hot and I, like many other girls my age, had both of their faces plastered all over my walls. I also invested heavily into the Beverly Hills 90210 merchandise; dolls, a hairdryer, a makeup mirror. So you can imagine my delight when I heard that Brandon Walsh, er, um, Jason Priestley had written a memoir.

Now in recent years, the 90210 cast have each taken their own paths.

  • Dancing with the Stars
  • Reality TV
  • Star in another hit show
  • Marry Megan Fox

But one of the shows biggest stars has kept a very low profile… or at least that’s what I thought until I’d read his self titled memoir, Jason Priestely. Starting with his childhood in Vancouver, we meet a young (and by looking at the photos) a very adorable Jason Priestely. Aspiring to be a person that “lives inside the box”, Jason was quickly swept up by the acting bug and started doing films for the CBC was fun, be he knew as a teen that if he was going to actually pursue this dream he’d have to make the leapt to Hollywood. So at seventeen years old, with his diploma in his back pocket, he made the big move to the States to make a go of it.

In the beginning, he had to do lots of commuting between the US and Canada, as Canada seemed to be calling with the job offers. That was until he got the opportunity to star in the show, 21 Jump Street. Starring in this show, as well as a show called, Sister Kate opened many new doors, one that included the chance to meet and try out for a new Aaron Spelling show, aptly titled Beverley Hills 90210. It’s clear that reading the pages about getting his start in Hollywood, that Jason had a strong admiration for Aaron Spelling and never once took their bond for granted. He knew when he was hired for the role of Brandon Walsh that learning from the best in the “biz” was a chance in a lifetime and he took it, getting the chance to direct many times for the show, including the episode we all waited for… ‘Donna Loses Her Virginity’

With a dose of 90210 gossip… it turns out everyone was sleeping with everyone and everything you’ve heard about Shannen Doherty is true… she really isn’t nice. Jason Priestley explains the impact the show had on him and how it help shape him into the man he is today. He, of course, explains lots and lots of details with the reader which is a real treat and I can promise you that you’ll want to text your friends and your Mom about all the things you find out. But the thing that warmed my heart the most (in this section of the book) is that he regrets leaving the show when he did and wished that he could have ended the Kelly & Brandon story in a more fulfilling way. Say it with me now… ahhhhhh.

What follows after his 90210 days is the budding of his 11 year relationship with his wife, makeup designer Naomi Lowde-Preistley and the birth of their two children. As well as the horrific race crash he endured that nearly cost him his life. And of course, the relationship he now shares with his fellow 90210 alumni. There’s also a great chapter about the roles he’s chosen post 90210 in an effort to shed the Brandon Walsh “good guy” image… see his new show, Call Me Fitz.

This is a well written, fun and nostalgic memoir from a man that ironically really did end up “living inside the box”. You won’t be disappointed if you decide to pick up this great read!  I also encourage you to check out this great article in Vulture, titled 9 Things 90210‘s Jason Priestley Remembers in His New Memoir. It was one of the many reasons that made me decide to pick up this book.


5 thoughts on “[Book Review] Jason Priestley: A Memoir by Jason Priestley

  1. lhill1 says:

    Thanks for the review ! I grew up in a rather strict household and wasn’t allowed to watch 90210. I did end up seeing most episodes as reruns, in my adulthood though and LOVED it ! I hadn’t planned to read this book, (never being a huge fan of his) however you now have me interested and I think I will have to give it a shot.

    • LR says:

      I’m so excited that I’ve peeked your interest in this book – it really was a great read! I promise you won’t be disappointed.

  2. ebookclassics says:

    Brandon Walsh was my fave guy on 90210 until a few seasons later, I decided I liked bad boys and switched to Dylan Walsh. But I’ve always been a huge fan of Jason Priestley and have always felt so thrilled for him when I hear he’s working on a project. Whether it’s directing a Barenaked Ladies video or representing a charity. I love him!

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