Meredith Baxter is a beloved and iconic television actress, most well-known for her enormously popular role as hippie mom, Elyse Keaton, on Family Ties. Her warmth, humor, and brilliant smile made her one of the most popular women on television, with millions of viewers following her on the small screen each week. Yet her success masked a tumultuous personal story and a harrowing private life. For the first time, Baxter is ready to share her incredible highs, (working with Robert Redford, Doris Day, Lana Turner, and the cast of Family Ties), and lows (a thorny relationship with her mother, a difficult marriage to David Birney, a bout with breast cancer), finally revealing the woman behind the image.
From her childhood in Hollywood, growing up the daughter of actress and co-creator of One Day at a Time Whitney Blake, Baxter became familiar with the ups and downs of show business from an early age. After wholeheartedly embracing the 60s counterculture lifestyle, she was forced to rely on her acting skills after her first divorce left her a 22-year-old single mother of two. Baxter began her professional career with supporting roles in the critically panned horror film Ben, and in the political thriller All the President's Men.
More lucrative work soon followed on the small screen. Baxter starred with actor David Birney as the title characters in controversial sitcom Bridget Loves Bernie. While the series only lasted a year, her high-profile romance with Birney lasted 15 volatile and unhappy years. Hiding the worst of her situation from even those closest to her, Baxter’s career flourished as her self-esteem and family crumbled. Her successful run as Nancy on Family was followed by her enormously popular role on Family Ties, and dozens of well-received television movies.
After a bitter divorce and custody battle with Birney, Baxter increasingly relied on alcohol as a refuge, and here speaks candidly of her decision to take her last drink in 1990.
And while another ruinous divorce to screenwriter Michael Blodgett taxed Baxter’s strength and confidence, she has emerged from her experiences with the renewed self-assurance, poise, and understanding that have enabled her to find a loving, respectful relationship with Nancy Locke, and to speak about it openly.
Told with insight, wit, and disarming frankness, Untied is the eye-opening and inspiring life of an actress, a woman, and a mother who has come into her own.
Deciding that truth is the best revenge, Cora begins to write a tell-all journal that reveals once and for all the secret she has guarded since she was a young woman. In entries that are profane, profound, and gossipy, she chronicles her childhood in rural Missouri, her shotgun wedding, and the terrible event that changed the course of her life. Intermingled with her reminiscences is an account of the day-to-day dramas at The Palisades—her budding romance with a suave new resident, feuds with her tablemates, her rollicking camaraderie with the man who oversees her health care, and the sinister cloud of suspicion that descends as a series of petty crimes sets everyone on edge. The story builds to a powerful climax as Cora’s revelations about her past mesh with the unraveling intrigue in the present.
Cora is by turns outrageous, irreverent, and wickedly funny. Despite a life with more than its share of disappointment and struggle, she refuses to go gently into her twilight years, remaining intensely curious, disinclined to play it safe, and willing to start over. Breaking Out of Bedlam captures the loneliness and secrets that lurk within families, the hardscrabble reality facing women with limited resources, and the resilience of a woman who survives, despite all the odds, through an unlikely combination of passion, humor, and faith.Fair Play
Two women, both artists, no longer young, live and work on opposite sides of a large apartment building, their studios connected by an attic passageway. They have loved and argued for decades, long enough to anticipate the other's next words and to guess her next move. Yet no matter how many times they've played the game, it is always capable of surprising them.
Tove Jansson tells the women's story in a series of brief, spare episodes, which bear the fitness of parable and the nuance of portraiture. We see the two as they watch Fassbinder films and B Westerns, critique each other's works in progress, spend time on a solitary island (recognizable to readers of Jansson's The Summer Book), and travel through the American Southwest. The type of love story that is rarely told, Fair Play is a revelatory depiction of contentment, hard-won and exhilarating.Kiss & Tell is her funny and frank memoir in graphic form: a fresh and offbeat coming-of-age story unfolding against the colorful backdrop of San Francisco in the '80s and '90s. Through deft storytelling and charming illustration, MariNaomi carries us through first love and worst love, through heartbreak and bedroom experimentation, as she grows from misfit teen to young woman.
The L Life
There have been few cultural touchstones to open people’s eyes to everyday lesbian life—until now. Through fascinating interviews and stunning portrait photography, The L Life introduces us to the women who are changing our view of the world. This candid collection is a celebration of real women, alongside headline-makers such as breast cancer researcher and bestselling author Dr. Susan Love; groundbreaking authors Alison Bechdel and Ann Bannon; entertainers such as actress Jane Lynch and comedian Kate Clinton; Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin and longtime activist Phyllis Lyon; award-winning film producer Christine Vachon; and many more.
Venus With Biceps
Over the last one hundred years, the image of the physically strong, confident, muscular woman has been the object of derision, fascination, and erotic fantasy; she is often portrayed, in both photography and illustration, as a sexy dominatrix, sexless mannequin, or sideshow freak. In this fascinating collection of rare archival images from the late-nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century, authors David L. Chapman and Patricia Vertinsky trace the peculiar yet fascinating history of muscular women in popular culture.
One of the battlefields in this cultural conflict appeared in popular imagery: posters, advertisements, comic books, magazine illustrations, and (most particularly) photography all offered outlets of expression for many muscular women. Until quite recently, however, such females were packaged for the general public as physical monstrosities, lesbian man-haters, kinky sex objects, or beautiful living statues. At the same time, many women, including those in the emerging female bodybuilder community, have had to fight hard to reclaim the image of female muscularity as their own.
Featuring some two hundred full-color and black-and-white illustrations, many never before published, Venus with Biceps is a beautiful and historically significant book about gender, image, social expectations, and female power.