"I built my American dream one rep at a time," says Bob Paris in Gorilla Suit, an unguarded memoir of his rise to the top of the world of professional bodybuilding.
This is the first-ever, honest, behind-the-scenes look into the world of professional bodybuilding and what the actual life of a bodybuilder is like. Paris show us bodies to the limit, and beyond, and discusses the price bodybuilders pay for this perfection, which includes the use of dangerous growth drugs. Paris also looks at the driving forces behind the business of bodybuilding, including the extraordinary story of the Weider brothers.
This is a story about chasing a dream, being willing to do anything to get that dream, and then growing frustrated with the world that dream is lived in. It is the discovery that after years of climbing a mountain and finally reaching the top, perhaps on reconsideration it was the wrong mountain to begin with.
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Bob Paris became famous as the first openly gay Mr. Universe and grew even more famous when he and Rob Jackson, his lover at the time, published Straight from the Heart, a memoir of their life together. Paris has now gone solo with Gorilla Suit. A cross between a personal memoir and a cultural history of bodybuilding, Gorilla Suit details Paris's desire to radically change his body, what that meant to him as a gay man living in a homophobic culture, and his decision to leave the sport once he discovered how seductive its destructive qualities were. Gorilla Suit is not an emotionally wrought literary memoir, or even a tell-all exposé; rather, it is a well-written, perceptive, and ultimately joyful story of a gay man's discovery of what it means to love his body.From the Publisher:
Praise for Gorilla Suit:
"An apologia for every hard-core bodybuilder who understands that while their pursuit may well destroy their health, it feeds their soul. He's the only writer on bodybuilding who doesn't lie for a living. Bob Paris is the first bodybuilder in history with both biceps and balls." --Sam Fussell, author of Muscle.
"Bob Paris has guts to stand up for what he believes--an admirable quality." --Frank Zane, three-time Mr. Olympia title holder
"At once empathetic and scathing, Paris's memoir conveys with equal persuasiveness both why he became a bodybuilder and why he found it impossible to remain one." --Kirkus Reviews
"The perspective Paris brings to this account of his meteoric rise and eventual disenchantment with the world of bodybuilding is, needless to say, fascinating." --City-Pages, Minneapolis
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