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Down the Rabbit Hole: Curious Adventures and Cautionary Tales of a Former Playboy Bunny by Holly Madison Book Review

Reasoning for reading this book

I was first introduced to Holly Madison when she did an interview with Alexander Cooper on the Call Her Daddy Podcast. After listening to Holly's episode I was totally transfixed by her story and had to learn more. While I was reading Down the Habit Hole: Curious Adventures and Cautionary Tales of a Former Playboy Bunny by Holly Madison by sister was watching The Girls Next Door. We loved comparing notes of how things were written in the book and how they were shown on TV. So simply I read this book out of curiosity for Holly's story. After finding her Call Her Daddy episode so entertaining I knew I would also find her book just as entertaining. I don't often mention the timing of when I read a book, but for this particular book I chose the perfect time because I read this during finals and the week of my college graduation. It was just an easy and enjoyable book to read during a stressful and busy time. 

Content of the book

In this book Holly Madison tells of her life before, during, and after being Hugh Hefner's #1 girlfriend. Soon after moving into the Playboy Mansion Holly learns that life in the mansion is no fairytale and she has been plunged down Alice in Wonderland's rabbit hole. One night Holly found herself contemplating suicide she equates this to the oppressive routine and strict rules of the mansion, manipulation, and the backstabbing by the other women in the house. That night Holly chooses live and takes what will she has left to change her life around. In this memoir Holly talks candidly about the infamous Playboy parties, sex, drugs, filming The Girls Next Door, her relationship with Hef and the other women, and life after Playboy. Holly not only changed her life but made a name for herself by being a contestant on Dancing with the Stars, a show in Las Vegas, and her own hit television show. 


Some themes are empowerment, personal growth, fighting for your dreams, and fighting for the life your deserve. 

What I liked about this book

As a Disney fan I really appreciated that each chapter began with a Lewis Carroll quote. This addition tied in the title of the book along with the use of the habit hole analogy. I liked that Holly was able to include her love for Disney into her first memoir. In my opinion the organization of the chapter in chronological order was the right choice for this book. Learning Holly's backstory before entering the mansion helped the reader to understand how she got to that point by understanding her upbringing, emotional and financially situation, and the goals she had for herself. Another aspect of the book that I enjoyed was the writing style. It was effortless, easy to read, and not too jumbled with unnecessary jargon. Something I have come to appreciate since I began reading memoirs is the willingness of the author to open up about their life and share what the reader wants to know. Holly was not afraid to share all the details that the reader of this book would want to know about the inner workings of the Playboy Mansion. I applaud and thank Holly for giving us all the juice details and for being so open to sharing her story. It is not an easy task to open up about when you are struggling in life, but Holly had no problem sharing where she was at emotionally. I really liked how the book did not focus too long on one portion of her life. It progressed along at a steady pace that made it so all parts of her life up to the point of writing were included. As someone who loves date and time details I appreciated that Holly would reference the date. The last part of the book that I really liked was how Holly ended the book with a reflection on her life up to that point. She was appreciative of the struggles she overcame, but was also grateful for the happy milestones that she had just met. 

What I disliked about the book

My only real complaint about this book is that since the book is a memoir and includes people and their real names no real physical descriptions of the people were given upon their instruction into the story. I found this to be annoying and I had to reference online images in order to understand what they looked like. I should also mention that I read this book on iBooks and did not know that there were pictures of those included in the book until I had already finished that book. So if you get a physical copy or digital copy look at the pictures at the back of the book to help you visualize the people if you don't already know  what they look like. 

Would I recommend this book?

If you have any interest in Holly's life or the life of the former #1 girlfriend of Hugh Hefner than I would say yes go get yourself a copy of this book. Overall it is an interesting book, but would probably only be interesting to certain people. With that being said I would put it on my list of books that I recommend. 

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