Friday, 12 August 2016

Book Review - Our Life on Ice: The Autobiography by Jayne Torvill & Christopher Dean - Booklympics

Amazon UK
Title: Our Life on Ice: The Autobiography
Author: Jayne Torvill & Christopher Dean
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Purchased
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: 9th October 2014
Rating: 4.5 Stars

When Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean collapsed to the ice at the climax of their routine to Boleroin the 1984 Winter Olympics, the judges could find no fault, awarding them 12 maximum scores of 6.0, while 24 million viewers watching at home in Britain simply looked on in amazement. Suddenly, we were all experts in figure skating, and we wanted to know more about the couple at the heart of it all. 

Despite intense interest in them, Torvill & Dean kept their lives private, with many still wondering if the pair were really a couple. They turned professional and would eventually spend eight years working on ITV's Dancing on Ice, but still much of their story remained unknown. 

Now, in Our Life on Ice, Torvill & Dean finally open up about the challenges they have faced and the pressures of life in the public eye: Jayne speaks candidly about her struggle with husband Phil to start a family, while Chris reveals the heartache in his family story. And of course, there is the skating, and the stories about what inspired their famous routines, and what the pair hope to achieve in the future as the approach their fortieth anniversary working together. It is the book their millions of fans have been waiting to read.

Before starting this book, my knowledge of Torvill and Dean was very limited, I remember as a child being forced to watch their 94 Olympics performance because they were good based on their Olympic gold (my family's understatement, not mine) and just not being interested...baring in mind I couldn't have remembered the gold medal as I was only born 2 weeks after. Of course I have seen them on Dancing on Ice, and even saw them live at a Dancing on Ice tour but I knew very little, but was in agreement that they are amazing. 

So I can't really comment on how accurate their autobiography is, but I have to assume that since they wrote it, its as good as their memories are. 

What I can easily say is that it was written in a very engaging way, and I found myself fascinated learning all about every aspect about this awesome ice-dance duo. From their early childhoods, discovering how they even got into ice-skating, to the Bolero, the many tours, the accident and injuries and also their training and winning mentality, its a very comprehensive look at Britain's much beloved pairing. 

The book even touches on their personal lives, their children and their respective relationships, even confirming once and for all what if anything happened between the pair. 

If you are interested in Ice Dancing, the quest of Olympic gold, would like to relive the Bolero (which I now know a lot of the story behind it), or generally want to read about the lives of Torvill and Dean from the beginning then I would definitely recommend their autobiography. 

I loved the descriptions, and the various members of their team. I also loved the chapter they are in Russia and felt as though I was there alongside them. I was even almost in tears during one chapter as an era was coming to an end - such was my affection for them by that stage, I was feeling very connected to the journey.

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