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A Better Me: The Official Autobiography

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  507 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
'This is the book I wished I'd had to turn to.' Gary Barlow

Gary Barlow is one of the most successful British musicians and songwriters of all time, but fifteen years ago, as he himself admits, he hit rock bottom - he was out of shape, out of work, depressed.

Food for him had become an addiction, a means not only of comfort but almost of self-medication as he grappled with t
Hardcover, 327 pages
Expected publication: January 4th 2019 by Blink Publishing (first published October 4th 2018)
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Zoe Hall
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-stars
This is a brutally honest book. I laughed and cried. This really depicts the highs and lows of Gary’s life... I’ve also found some things out about Gary that I didn’t know which is always interesting. An incredible read which inspires you to be the best you. This book deals with a lot of issues including bereavement and mental health. It’s a life-affirming read. Sometimes, such brutal honesty is something which gets lost in this world of social media and glitz and glamour. This book paved the wa ...more
Saga Norén
Aug 18, 2018 marked it as to-read
Soon!! It's coming 😱😍
Oct 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Take That and books are the two biggest loves of my life so when a book like this comes along I was bound to devour it, just like Gary devours kefir and sauerkraut. Don't get me wrong, there's a lot of food talk in this book. But the book is entitled 'A Better Me' and it's well known that one of the major ways Gary bettered himself was by eating good food. It's hard not to feel hungry whilst reading this book.
Course it's not all about food, there's heartache and triumph, doubts and fears and tr
Oct 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook, memoirs
I'm going to be honest : I knew very little of Gary Barlow before buying this. I think I was too young and missed my window. My babysitters were TT fans, I was too late to the party, Robbie was already a bad boy with a solo career when I started to listen to anything that was not curated by the conservatory.

But few days ago, thanks to the little bits on Facebook, I watched him on Graham Norton's talk about his book. A nice, sweet moment, ending in a hug because in very few words, he managed to t
Rose McClelland
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What an incredibly honest and heartfelt book. I was very interested to read about Gary's struggles with food. He goes into great detail about his eating disorder. He's painfully honest and that made me just love him. He talks very candidly about his depression - about the great lows after the band & the horrible time when he felt like the nation hated him. He just hid himself away for years and sounded so depressed. He wanted to put on weight so that people wouldn't recognise him.
This is a
Oct 05, 2018 rated it it was ok
My main issue with ‘A Better Me’ is that Gary himself admitted that it originally started as a fitness book, including exercises and even recipes. Since the initial conception it evolved into a memoir, but it is quite clear which sections were intended for its original iteration.

Sections on the death of his father, his depression and overeating, and the loss of his daughter are interesting, but are then followed with tedious accounts of the various diets he has tried and his opinions on the vari
Nov 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography
A disclaimer - I am not a Take That fan. I like some of their songs. I am the sort of person that is more likely to buy a Greatest Hits album rather than an original studio album because their music is part of the soundtrack of my youth.

The prologue sets the tone for this autobiography. It is very honest, warts and all, about the lowest points of Gary Barlow's life. This autobiography does not follow the conventional chronological order of many showbiz biographies, you know, where he was born, h
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography
This book is a brutally honest and unflinching look at what it's like to be a food addict while in the public eye.

Gary Barlow is a British singer-songwriter, member of the band Take That. He's an emotional eater who turned to food when his career hit the skids after Take That broke up in the mid 90's. He ballooned to over 240 pound and became an unrecognizable recluse.

The books is told in first person, in an easy narrative style that feels almost like a conversation. There are some skips back
Emma Murphy
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have loved Gary since forever, and this book was a real eye opener to my idol, my hero. Gary isn't perfect. He has survived some really dark times in his life, times when he became a virtual recluse, and wanted to avoid who he is, what he does. Gary's way to avoid reality was food. I can completely relate to this, and Gary has provided an open and completely honest account of these times in his life. Brutally honest and a book that I found hard to put down. A must read for anyone who is an emo ...more
Jules Cake Pops
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book.

Well written Gary, you've bared your heart and sole in this book, problems with your weight, depression, fame, family, grief, just like any other person.
It goes to show even the rich and famous have everyday problems to deal with.
And I think you've done well, you've kept a good head on your shoulders, and have come back from some very horrible times. We never know what's around the corner, and it's about taking each day as it comes.
All the best for you & tt for the future.
Nov 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
I have loved this book, I have laughed, I have cried buckets, I have nodded with some "yes I understand" at the dieting, at the grief, obviously the fame side of things I can't know but the human factor, as Gary, is just heartwarming and heart-rending in equal parts. thank you Gary for being open and honest, for making a fan listen to you, and really listens to what you have to say.
wonderfully, painfully, honest.
Aurora Hamilton
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of A Better Me. It is a raw and real account of life as a food addict and serial dieter. So much of it I could relate to. I sobbed at parts and genuinely laughed out loud in in others.
The editing of it isn't perfect and in parts anecdotes feel unfinished but as a whole it is down to earth and honest, you can also hear Gary's voice in the way it is written.
It has definitely made me rethink all the diets I have done I've the years and continue to do.
Oct 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the very first audiobook I have listened to ever. It was so lovely to listen to Gary narrate his book, sharing so many experiences about his life - the good, the bad and the ugly. Funny and heart breaking at times, honest and down to earth and very endearing. Five stars from me 😊
Miss Melanie Harris
Couldn't put this down!!!

As a huuge TT fan i loved getting to hear about all those years from Gary's point of view. Really well written, it made me laugh and cry. So honest and at times writing about horrific experiences, well done Gary 😀
Sarah Bradbury
I had no idea what to expect upon opening this; I bought it really, because he was my best friends heartthrob and I wanted to know what it was she might have seen in him. Yes, he's a talented song writer. Yes, he can sing (I've never heard him hit a bum note) but that was all. I thought maybe this book would change my opinion - and it did, just not in the way I expected.

I had this image (as you do when you don't know someone) that GB was a bit of a loner, pushover and all-round nice guy. What I
lisa emery
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Honesty at it's best

A thoroughly good read, searingly honest with no holds barred!
Told with humility, joy and sadness.
What a nice guy!
William Lomas
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was ok
this book just wasn't for me personally. just seemed whilst inspiring, so depressing at the same time. i gave up on it after an hour or so of reading. just couldn't get in to it.
Nov 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Was so excited to read this, but struggled to finish it. Could relate to the weight struggles, but went on too much and consisted of little else.
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely loved it. Very honest & from the heart.
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Loved every bit of this. All the more because he narrates it himself. Sorry it ended.
Oct 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very good book to read especially as it's been written by Gary Barlow himself as I am very big fan of him 💗
Oct 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It’s heartbreaking in parts and yet full of life and fun and a shed load of memories. I loved it
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Gary Barlow (born January 20, 1971 in Frodsham, Cheshire, England) is an English singer, pianist, songwriter, bandleader and producer. He is a member of the pop group Take That, and was one of the most successful songwriters of the 1990s, penning no fewer than 16 hit singles during the decade. Barlow had 2 #1's and 5 further Top 40 UK Singles as a solo singer in the final half of the 1990s alone. ...more