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TRUE STRENGTH by Kevin Sorbo

TRUE STRENGTH

My Journey from Hercules to Mere Mortal and How Nearly Dying Saved My Life

By Kevin Sorbo

Pub Date: Oct. 11th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-306-82036-6
Publisher: Da Capo/Perseus

A dull, inconsequential account of an affable slab of beefcake’s medical troubles.

Sorbo, best known for his starring role in the hit TV program Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, recounts the catastrophic effects of an aneurysm and a series of strokes on his life and career. At the height of his stardom, the conspicuously healthy, clean-living actor suffered a bizarre and statistically unlikely health crisis that left the him persistently weak and dizzy, plagued by migraines and vision loss and unable to maintain his muscular physique or even swing a prop sword on the set of the show. Sorbo is candid about the hopelessness and resentment that characterized his slow recovery, his frustration with contradictory medical advice and holistic therapies of varying effectiveness and the stress his condition placed on his new marriage. Unfortunately, the author, at least on the evidence here, is such a resolutely bland personality—a middle-of-the-road guy in temperament, taste and sensibility—that it is difficult to muster much interest in his predicament. His anecdotes about life on the set of Hercules are flavorless and mild, his observations on love, family and the capriciousness of fate banal and his regular-guy persona precludes any surprising, salacious or otherwise interesting revelations about his idyllic upbringing as a healthy young jock or his relatively smooth ascension to cult stardom. Sorbo’s medical problems, while clearly devastating to the author and his family and friends, are not the stuff of high drama; he was knocked down, felt lousy for a period and slowly recovered.

Readers may feel vaguely gratified that an apparently nice person made it through a difficult period, but it’s hardly compelling reading.