How to Make Love Like a Porn Star: A Cautionary Tale

ISBN: 0060539100
ISBN 13: 9780060539108
By: Jenna Jameson

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About this book

In the underbelly of Las Vegas, a cesspool of warring biker gangs and seedy strip clubs, gawky, brace-faced Jenna Massoli was transformed into the bombshell Jenna Jameson. Today, Jenna is the biggest star in the history of adult movies, consistently ranked as one of the most beautiful women alive. But behind the glamour and the meteoric rise to fame was a path paved with tragedy and heartbreak. As a teenager—drawn into a dark and chaotic world where rape, abuse, and murder were commonplace—Jenna began her rapid downward spiral of addiction and degradation . . . while at the same time becoming the porn world's biggest crossover success story.Her intimate memoir, How to Make Love Like a Porn Star, is a shocking sexual history, an insider's guide to the secret workings of the billion-dollar adult film industry, and a gripping thriller that probes deeply into Jenna's dark past. Mix in hilarious anecdotes, adrenaline-pumping triumphs, and photos from Jenna's private collection, and you have a tell-all autobiography unlike any other.

Reader's Thoughts

Nags

The book had some predictable content but far less than you would imagine. The narrative is candid (sometimes too much so) and a light, quick read. There are some excerpts from Jenna's diary which looked so genuine that I would be very surprised if they forged it. It's also amazing to see how her dad took to the news of her becoming a porn star - very well in fact, although she came from a reasonably "normal" family. Her relationship with her brother is also pretty special. Some parts of it really surprised me, like how she has included an actual contract to act in a porn movie, tips for aspiring porn stars, etc. Although it was probably very conservative of me to think this, most porn stars make a choice to be where they are. The money is quick, they only work about 20 days a year, and if you make it big, there's no looking back, much like any other career choice. There are conversations between Jenna, her brother and her dad that's recorded verbatim. They were interesting in the beginning but soon started to drag and get boring. Wouldn't really recommend this unless you are very curious about how someone would go about becoming a porn star or Jenna's life in particular (it's very detailed that way). The ending is a happy one - she gets married. The book is pretty huge and I gave up after going halfway or so and then skimmed the rest of the pages. Note: there are some graphic pictures in the book so not something you want to leave lying around the house.

Barbara Skuplik

I think that like most other readers of this book, I was looking for and expecting a fun, light read,and a personal take on the porn industry from the inside--some juicy details and "secret behind the scene" recollections. There seems to be such a fascination with this industry, with many people wondering "how could they do that", while curiosity gets the best of us. What I got was a much more raw, honest, and personal story of what many consider to be the "Queen of Mainstream Pornography". This book is much more about Jenna Jameson, her life growing up, and the effects it had on her, than the "behind the scenes" commentary I was expecting. It seemed to be an attempt to figure out who she is and make sense of her past and current life. Of course, she is no longer married to Jay (as the book ends off), and depending on which sources you believe, she is either separated from Tito Ortiz, or happily in bliss. Her craving for motherhood is made clear throughout the book with her early first sexual experiences and yearning to have a true "parent" figure in her life. She takes you through her drug addictions, some photo shoots, the making of her movies, many of her sexual trysts--straight or otherwise, her career, her family drama, and her past. The book is rather long; filled with glossy photos and many black and white pictures from her childhood to present day. I would like to see her write a followup to she where she is in her 'head space' now. Her constant searching for approval, belonging, acceptance, and love is clear throughout, and manifests itself in many different ways (sex, drugs, attention seeking behavior, codependent relationships). I hope she has been able to find a bit of closure now that she has a family and has settled down and found some peace. This was definitely a fun book to read--very easy to read and surprisingly a fast read as well. The pictures are explicit (as a warning to those who are not comfortable with overt nudity but definitely add to the book. The book is punctuated by several diary entrees throughout her life, which if real, is a neat way to see the chronic issues and insecurities that have plagued her from childhood and sadly followed her to adulthood. This book is not for everyone, but it is definitely interesting!

Jackie

I actually really enjoyed this book. It was an eye opening (and occasionally a jaw dropping) look into a world whose reality I could not even dream of. I came out of the book with a great deal of respect for her, which I would never have guessed going into it.

Lauren

I think this is a story of survival. (Why do people always look at me funny when I admit to having read this?) Being the queen of her business that she is, I read it wanting to know what made her tick. "Sex" is the popular answer to that. But that's really not the truth. She admits to loving sex, but she dispels the myth that porn stars are sex addicts who want to get paid for their source of pleasure. She's very honest about admitting how bad the sex industry can be. The fact that she survived brutal rape (more than once), addiction, and bad abusive boyfriend after bad abusive boyfriend, says that she's tough. She's also a very smart business lady. She deserves all that she has, if it's what makes her happy. When in doubt, if you were to ask yourself, "what would Jenna do?" it would be as valid as asking "what would Jesus do?" or "what would Janis do?" Jenna would say to move on and make the best of the situation. She knew how to separate emotion and work. In the end, she's just another girl who had a string of bad boyfriends and wanted to be successful at her job. Really, it's a just another story of a gal trying to make it on her own. This isn't a story about sex or about porn. It's a story of survival. I didn't give it any more than three stars only because she didn't write it all by herself.

Janice

I bought this book on a whim many years ago and just never got around to reading it. At the time I was very interested in women's empowerment and sexuality, and since Jenna Jameson did have some crossover success, and was one of the biggest money makers in the porn industry I was interested in reading a little more about how she achieved that success. Honestly, I think she gives herself a lot more credit than she deserves.... she also repeatedly calls herself a "good girl" when describing her childhood, but then goes on to describe early use of alcohol, drugs, assault, and vandalism. I'm pretty sure her definition and my definition of being a "good girl" are two different things. After reading this book - it's not surprising that she made many of the choices she did. Her father, a criminal, at one point a cop, and a drug addict. She and her brother were both heavily addicted to meth, and she had absolutely no positive female influence in her life. She apparently was also raped three times before she turned 20. I don't doubt any of her childhood trauma, however, I'm not sure I believe half of what she writes about - I almost feel bad that I can't take a lot of it seriously, or find it believable in any way. I'd be fascinated to find out what a mental health professional thinks. Also, it's pretty amazing that she never served any jail time, or was never arrested for half of the situations she describes. I don't think I can recommend reading it. It only cost me $1 after all, and maybe 48 hours of my time. It made me feel bad for her more than anything, which is really not what I wanted it to be. *UPDATE*So I looked up Jenna on Wikipedia after finishing this review. She's been arrested twice for alcohol and drugs since then, and has now been divorced three times (although she did finally have twins a few years ago). Sad.

Steph

Oh, Jenna, I was rooting for you to step up to the plate and show the world that you are a strong and independent force to be reckoned with. Perhaps prove to be a brilliant businesswoman who made her way in the world and overturned misogyny and maltreatment in the given field. This was almost unreadable blather. Stick to fucking.

Erin440

I am actually not a huge fan of biographies, yet here I am reviewing my second biography. Granted, I read this a couple years ago, but still. So, I've always been kind of fascinated with Jenna Jameson. She's pretty notorious in the porn industry and has made a huge name for herself through heavy marketing.The book basically takes you through her life thus far. She talks about how her upbringing led her to be a wild teenager and how that ultimately led to her porn career. She writes about her first girlfriend, her problems with drugs, and her rising career.It's a very candid tale, bordering on raunchy at times (she spends a whole page giving instructions on how a woman can perfect her oral skills), but then, she's in porn, so what do you expect? I liked the book because I felt she was being honest and it offered an insight into an industry that is rarely discussed.

Leticia

How am I going to describe this book? For starters, I'm a porn fan, but not of Jenna Jameson. In porn, she is plastic, superficial and pathetic. This did not dampen my curiosity, however. I am an avid reader of the writings of the porn star Stoya; the difference is that Stoya has an extremely sharp intellect.Jenna Jameson's autobiography is well-written. It is also frustratingly laid out, much like her life. It is filled with photographs; broken up with interviews; punctuated with comic strips; scattered with sketches. She must have had an outstanding editor, because it hangs together very, very well.Essentially, Jenna Jameson = porn because: revenge. Which, while being possibility the most un-self-reflective thing someone could write into an autobiography (perhaps the point), is also predictable as fuck. The story of Jenna's life is also what you would expect: total white trash, lots of drugs and bad decisions.She gives sex work a really bad name. I was hoping to see "I got into porn because I love to fuck". But really she has very little self-respect, and a confidence borne only of an arrogance resulting from diva-dom.The most interesting parts of this book were those in which Jameson attempts to make sense of her life through writing; the poignant parts of her life are exactly that: poignant. And while I am well aware that abused women tend not to make a lot of sense of their lives and the choices that they make, the fact that she made the SAME mistake, over and over and over again, made me wonder what the hell was wrong with her.In any case, I pushed through this book to the end. The writing was good, the structure was good, the story was meh, and I skipped a huge amount (really, who reads a split-column biography that interrupts a story for god's sake?), but I still finished it.And I finished it because of curiosity. So, regardless of all of the utter failings of Jenna Jameson personally (which, let's be honest, is the only reason I couldn't put up with more of her life), this book was pretty good. I'm sure that if I had far lower standards, I would have really enjoyed this book.Essentially, though, Jameson's personality is as superficial and plastic as her body. That in itself should be an allegory.

Lilah

First, a tangent:Believe it or not, it was for Neil Strauss and not Jenna Jameson that I picked up this book. He's great trashy reading, a real talent for Lifestyles Of The Odious Yet Compelling. The Game was one of the funniest books I read last year – hell, ever - it was a totally bizarre story to live through, and Strauss was the right guy to tell that story. Sure, the veracity is suspect since everybody wants to make themselves look good – and Strauss, being a master pickup artist himself, knows all those tricks - but the anecdotes, the characterizations, the eye for human nature, there were so many details that a lesser voice would have missed. It made me go look up everything else he'd done – and it turned out I'd already read Motley's book, Manson's book, hey, there's Jenna's book – handling the life of a porn star, that should be interesting. The structure features all of the typical Neil Strauss built-in features: top lists, comic panels, diary entries, loads of pictures, the usual fun and games with the narrative structure. We learn about stripper injuries, suitcase pimps, why guys who think porn is a great way to get laid are deeply deluded, and other facets of the business. The beginning jumped right in with Jenna's biker boyfriend-tattoo parlor-Las Vegas strip club lifestyle, and read fast through her first steps through the sex industry, laced through with the behind-the-scenes drug addiction and relationship misery. But things slowed down towards the middle, where her dad and brother were brought in to recount their family history - amusing at first, but then dragged on and on until it felt like one overlong round of Remember When and I just skipped it. Another problem was that Strauss's style would creep in and obscure Jenna's voice with discordant philosophizing and epiphanies that sounded odd – I've seen too many of the same little metaphors/images/time-outs for reflection in Strauss's other books, as if he thought up some encapsulating lines and had the celebrity look at them and the celebrity said “yeah, exactly!”Not bad, but not scintillating. This one didn't have as much flavor as Strauss's other books.BTW, the night that Jenna and Marilyn Manson met each other appears in both their books – and they both have very different memories of that evening.Marilyn Manson: “She had a whole catalog of different 'I'm a whore, I'm a virgin, I'm your mom, I'm your daughter' lines; she had all kinds of fuck-me-doll looks; she pulled out the entire contents of her seduction bag of tricks.”Jenna: “Every time we were naked, he'd be going for my butt like a rat to cheese.”

Mindy

I got some sideways looks reading it in waiting rooms and my mom wanted to know why I wasn't reading "something else", and I'm sure there's a large segment of the world that would not enjoy reading this and would find it vulgar and think it shows what society is coming to... and I'm not even saying they're wrong. I don't feel like it was a waste of my time to read it though. It's more interesting and serious than you would think judging by the cover. I'm surprised at some of the serious issues she survived (rape, drug addiction, her friend's murder, unhealthy relationships) and even though the book is really long and I got bored in the middle, I wanted to keep reading to finally get to read that her life got better (which it did). I ultimately liked the styling of the book the most- which you can get a feel of with the cover. I liked that there were pictures throughout the book from all different stages and events in her life and (presumably) photocopies of her journal from middle and high school. It had nice chapter dividers and everything was visually appealing. The writing was good too. It was an easy read, but not because it was lower-level reading. I don't know how much were her words or Neil Strauss', but the stories were interestingly told and no matter who worded it, you can tell Jenna has put serious thought into her life and reflecting and making wise comments about what she's learned. Her journal entries as a young adult confirmed her intelligence and introspective qualities too. And even if you don't want to have things in common with a porn star, she has gone through many of the same basic relationship issues anyone else has on some level. I did get bored in the middle where there is a section that alternates between play-styled dialogue on the page and some of her journal entries from when she was younger. The stories weren't bad, I just preferred the typical narration to the way she had it on the page when her and her brother Tony and her dad were talking about memories. Oh, and she does get RATHER graphic describing some of her real-life sexcapades...

Vanessa

Maybe it's all Howard Stern's fault - but ANYTHING Porn, that's not really porn, I just gotta read. Jenna really truly is a good person and her memoir is both funny, sad, touching, and totally interesting from start to finish. She's a straight shooter and tells her story, just the way it happened. There's a bit too much packaging: goofy comics, lots and lots of photos - but hey, she'll do anything for her fans. Would love to have a meal with her one day.

Courtney

Okay. Well. It was interesting. What else can I say about this book? I found myself frustrated because it felt like it was written by, well, someone who never quite took school as a priority and started stripping and having sex on film for money. Which makes Jenna Jameson sound worse than I think she actually is, but... that's how the book reads. The story of her life is a bit predictable with the standard troubled childhood and life of trials and hardships, but to Jenna's credit, she does admit in the book that she realizes that as much as she doesn't want her story to be THAT story - that maybe she would have ended up on the same path without the things she went through and that other people have been through the same drama and wound up as doctors so really, her past is inconsequential. It's an interesting read, but I wish I hadn't shelled out the money it cost me for the hardcover copy. I can't even read it in public because of all the nekkid pictures!

Imogen

Here is one weird thing about this book: It's about six hundred pages long, but about a third of that is pictures. Here's another thing about this book: during intense passages about things like rape, there will be pictures of porny-ass ol' Jenna with a gallon of lipstick on showing up her butt, or something. Which could totally work in two ways: either as total, 'you are reading this for the porniness' exploitive cash-in, or in a meta, 'here is the reality, looks how different it is from the way it's portrayed' kind of commentary way. But instead I honestly couldn't figure out which it was supposed to be, and ultimately, I kinda feel like it was just to make Jenna's autobiography an Event Tome instead of, y'know, a porn star memoir. Which works- it is huge and cinderblocky. Another weird thing is how ghost-written it feels. Alex said that Jenna Jameson is hella smart and articulate and all the things we say when we mean 'the assumption that comes with her background is that she's stupid, but the reality is that she's not,' and I totally believe her. But that doesn't always translate to writing, right? I know absolute conversational intelligent geniuses whose e-mails and letters are strings of cliches and stiff phrases. So I've got nothing against Neil Strauss as her, uh, co-author. It's just weird how, like, the prose slightly has character and slightly doesn't. Not to resort to one of the hackneyedest metaphors about writing in the world, but it's like potato soup where the only spice is a little bit of salt. I wish that her voice had come through more, because the sentences themselves read like they could have been written by literally anybody in the world, if they were co-writing a book with a professional paragraph-churner.Pretentious. I guess the only other weird thing I want to mention is how, like, if you take out the specifics- the fame, the porn, that kinda stuff- her life is just pretty much everybody else's life. Like, a few fucked up relationships, a little overboard on the substances, the amount of money she has is none and then a lot and then not much and then ultimately enough. Which I'm sure, also, is the point- it's just weird to get to the end of six hundred pages and read that somebody in their, what, late twenties? Is at the same point emotionally that I am in my late twenties. What am I supposed to do with that, if I already knew that sex workers were real people with real lives? I just felt like I didn't take much away from it. Um, so whatever. It was fine. It's probably not worth thirty bucks though. Is it in paperback? I'd wait for the paperback, if it's not.

Eva Leger

I didn't really know what to expect with this but I'd heard some good things about it and wanted to try it. I'm not a huge Jenna fan but I do like the woman and find her very attractive and interesting. This reads like a memoir which is what I was hoping for so I'm happy. I was wondering at first how she had so much to write about because it's not a thin book by any means, almost 600 pages with some pictures included. She did it though, she kept me wanting to know more the entire time. She told about her childhood, her family and friends, her career, everything with enough detail for it to be interesting and not so much that it gets boring. I just found out that this isn't her only book and I do plan on looking at what else she has written.

Chris

OK, you already know the stereotype of the Stripper/Porn Actress: Raped at an early age, an emotionally un-involved father, and the meth-head, tattoo shop owner boyfriend--who's uncle raped her and then raped and strangled her best friend. The author is a self-confessed E! junkie and it definately shows in her writing style. She never seems to let the facts get in the way of a good story. The timeline seemed to jump erratically, and the narrative was constantly interrupted by useless teenage diary entries and family round-table conversations that, in my mind's eye, would have been filmed from a high angle with a grainy black and white hand-held camera. These "intimate moments" often contained contrary facts to what was previously written. Jenna ends the book with her "true love": a man who continually leaves town for month on end, and changes the locks on her when she storms out of the house after arguments involving breaking all the dishes and decorations in the house.She does add some humorous, if raunchy, anecdotes, pointers for other molestees to get into porn, and a bit of kiss and tell of the A-List. This is an autobiography that could definately have used a better editor. Now, a number of years after the book was written, it is funny to listen to her bad mouth her former husband.

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