Title: If You Ask Me (And of Course You Won’t)
Author: Betty White
Publication: 2011 by G. P. Putman’s Sons
Drawing from a lifetime of lessons learned, seven-time Emmy winner Betty White’s wit and wisdom take center stage as she tackles topics like friendship, romantic love, aging, television, fans, love for animals, and the brave new world of celebrity. If You Ask Me mixes her thoughtful observations with humorous stories from a seven- decade career in Hollywood. Longtime fans and new fans alike will relish Betty’s candid take on everything from her rumored crush on Robert Redford (true) to her beauty regimen (“I have no idea what color my hair is and I never intend to find out”) to the Facebook campaign that helped persuade her to host Saturday Night Live despite her having declined the hosting job three times already.
Featuring all-new material, with a focus on the past fifteen years of her life, If You Ask Me is funny, sweet, and to the point-just like Betty White.
What I Thought About It . . .
I knew that Betty White wrote another book, but apparently she wrote a lot more than I realized. I came across this one in a library newsletter and I confess that my interest in reading it was her mention of the work she does for animals. Now I am a big animal lover, and that will pretty much be an automatic attraction for me to any book.
Surprisingly enough I was able to finish this book in one sitting, but not truly due to being gripped by Betty’s narrative. Half the pages are just photographs of her over the years with various people or animals. The rest of the book is short chapters on whatever topic graces the heading. It kind of felt like if Betty were my friend or neighbor she would be giving me these bits of advice in passing, if that makes any sense at all. There were some good passages and I wished that more time had been devoted to some of them. Betty White is a short, sweet, and to the point kind of writer.
I’ve loved Betty White since watching The Golden Girls so it was kind of fun to read something by her. There were amusing segments and I find that she shares my obsessive love for crossword puzzles too. I did enjoy the portion where she speaks about answering the same questions over and over to the point of when asked if there’s anything remaining she would like to do, Betty’s reply is, “Yes, Robert Redford!” Haha! Yes, if I ever become famous and am asked something like that I want to have a similar fangirl inspired answer! I can appreciate someone whose crush turns into true admiration.
Her work with animals was the true reason I wanted to read this book, but while it was informative I had hoped for more. Although maybe what I seek can be found in another of her books? It’s something I should look into. Still I liked reading that she has turned down roles in movies before based on her principle that she couldn’t be involved in something that demonstrated the mistreatment of animals. Bravo, Betty! And the fact that she has such an extensive stuffed animal collection gives me the perfect ammunition for the next time my mother gripes at me that I am too old for and have too many stuffed animals. I’ll just say something along the lines of, “Betty White devotes entire rooms to her stuffed animals and she’s eighty-nine years old!” I would sooner part with books than part with my barn owls.