Most Talkative: Stories from the Front Lines of Pop Culture Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Most Talkative: Stories from the Front Lines of Pop Culture

If you are as intrigued as I am about the cable channel Bravo then this is definitely the book for you. This is the Autobiography of Andy Cohen the Executive Producer of many of the networks top shows including The Real Housewives franchises and Emmy winning Top Chef. He started off a humble boy from suburban St. Louis and after attending Boston University he got the Pop Culture bug with dreams of becoming a big time journalist. After finally nailing his first big interview with soap opera legend Susan Lucci he knew that he was onto something major.
Click here to see the rest of this review

He talks of his journey post graduation starting as an Intern at CBS in New York. He worked as we all start for free slowly creeping his way up the ladder until eventually making his way as a journalist for the CBS Morning Show. It was not what he had particularly hoped for, but he never lost sight of his determination to make it in the world of journalism.

Bravo came to his plate after a friend of his was visiting some old pals in Orange County, California. His friend talked to him about the ways in which the people of the gated community Coto de Casa lived. Their lavish outfits, parties and conversations were something his friend considered "made for TV." Thus starts the first installment of The Real Housewives of Orange County and the trend in not only that franchise, but others like it both on and off Bravo. He mentions that he's fully aware of the their ridiculous conversations and acknowledges that it is "part of the experience of filming. There are no filters."

It does seem as if there is may be another Cohen book in the works so for those of us who are glued to his work the anticipation is high. Most Talkative was a great read with a concrete timeline that is not hard to follow. Ideal for those interested in journalism and pop culture or your favorite housewife.
Best part of story, including ending: Cohen seems as relatable in the book as he does on tv. You gravitate towards his humble roots and gradual success is a tough industry.

Best scene in story: Once Cohen finally gets his first celebrity interview with his icon Susan Lucci.

Opinion about the main character: Andy Cohen makes you chuckle along as he tells you his candid experiences coming out and making it in the tv business. From St. Louis to Boston to New York you find yourself with him relating your own experiences to his or finding his to be extra unordinary.

The review of this Book prepared by Anjelica Blige a Level 1 Blue Jay scholar

Andy Cohen, executive producer of Bravo's "The Real Housewives" franchise, discusses his childhood in St. Louis and television career in this memoir. Fascination with television shows since he was a child led Andy Cohen to pursue a career as a producer and network executive. At the age of 19, Andy was a college student at Boston University when he got the opportunity to interview the legendary soap opera star Susan Lucci. Unbeknownst to Andy at the time, Susan Lucci was merely the first of many interviews he would end up having with divas in the television, movie, and music industry.

Andy had a very happy childhood in St. Louis, Missouri. Two of his favorite things to do were watch television and talk. He talked so much that it wasn't uncommon for family members to either tell him to shut up or ignore him altogether.

Even though Andy knew he was attracted to men his entire life, he didn't think being in a relationship with a man was really an option when he was a kid. He struggled with his sexuality for many years. He feared becoming a social outcast who wasn't accepted by his friends and family because he was gay. Andy didn't personally know any gay people growing up and there weren't any gay role models he could look up to on television. As a result, he tended to admire beautiful women who had strong, larger-than-life personalities.

When Andy graduated from high school, he decided to attend Boston University and study communications. Andy liked the city of Boston because it was very different from St. Louis. Boston had a gay community. Knowing there were gay people he could turn to if he needed emotional support was important to Andy at that point in his life.

During a college semester in Europe, Andy had brief relationships with a few men and frequently went to gay bars. He often lied to his friends about what he was doing so that they would believe he was heterosexual. Andy finally admitted to his closest friends that he was gay and they completely accepted him. Andy also told his parents that he was gay when he returned home to St. Louis. They assured Andy that they still loved and supported him.

Andy was able to turn a summer internship at CBS into a full-time job after he graduated from college. He started working for CBS's morning show. Initially, Andy's tenure at CBS included various duties such as collating transcripts, booking guests, and answering phones. He kept getting promoted over the years and eventually became a producer at CBS This Morning and 48 Hours.

After spending ten years at CBS, Andy didn't think his career at the network could go much further. He decided to accept an offer to run the programming department at TRIO - a new cable channel. Lauren Zalaznick was hired as President of the network and became a valuable mentor to Andy. In spite of Lauren and Andy's efforts to create and promote original shows, TRIO was cancelled.

Lauren proceeded to get a job at Bravo and offered Andy a position that required he handle all of the shows in production and development. Some of the most popular shows Andy brought to the network are Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, Top Chef, Project Runway, and The Real Housewives of Orange County. Due to the success of The Real Housewives of Orange County, a franchise was created that included other shows focusing on housewives living in different cities throughout the country.

Andy often told Lauren about the rumors he heard regarding the reality stars at Bravo. Lauren thought it would be a good idea for Andy to create a blog where he would write about all of the behind-the-scenes gossip on Bravo's reality shows. Then, Andy began to interview the reality show cast members on camera and the segments aired on Bravo's website. Eventually, Andy's web series turned into Watch What Happens Live - the popular late-night talk show.

After the second season of The Real Housewives of Orange County aired, the network decided to add a reunion show that would be hosted by Andy. When The Real Housewives of Orange County reunion episode received good ratings, reunion specials were added to most of the reality shows. Reunions help the network executives decide who will stay on the show or if the show should be cancelled.

Andy admits that everything they do on television is an experiment. They are never certain if a show will resonate with an audience. In spite of the uncertainty that comes along with having a career in television, Andy truly enjoys being a producer. He also never expected that he would become somewhat of a celebrity himself.
Best part of story, including ending: There is a significant amount of material in the book that didn't add anything to the overall narrative. For example, the full transcript of a Saturday Night Live skit about "The Real Housewives" is in the book. If anyone was really interested in the skit, they could easily find the video on the internet. He also wrote in-depth about pranks him and his friend played on his mother, but the stories weren't particularly amusing or funny. It seems like he added unnecessary information to hit the page limit set by the publisher.

Best scene in story: I really enjoyed reading excerpts from letters Andy wrote to his parents when he was a kid at summer camp. Andy was very candid about his dislike of summer camp and constantly asked his mother to give him updates about his favorite soap operas. Reading the exchanges between him and his parents was very funny and endearing.

Opinion about the main character: I like Andy's personality and I'm always interested in people who know as much about pop culture as I do. The way he comes across in the book is exactly how he appears on television. The great thing about Andy is that he has left his mark on pop culture, but he also continues to be a true fan of the people he meets and interviews.

The review of this Book prepared by Pamela Parker a Level 3 Eurasian Jay scholar

Chapter Analysis of Most Talkative: Stories from the Front Lines of Pop Culture

Click on a plot link to find similar books!

Plot & Themes

job/profession:    -   producer/director Job/profession/poverty story    -   Yes Taboo Sex Story?    -   Yes Kind of sex:    -   gay guy Story of entertainer?    -   Director/Producer Period of greatest activity?    -   1950+

Subject of Biography

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   actor/actress/producer Ethnicity    -   White Nationality    -   American


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   1 () United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Midwest Small town?    -   Yes Century:    -   1980's-Present

Writing Style

Book makes you feel?    -   like laughing If this is a kid's book:    -   Age 16-Adult Pictures/Illustrations?    -   A few 1-5 B&W    -   More 6-10 B&W How much dialogue in bio?    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog    -   significantly more descript than dialog How much of bio focuses on most famous period of life?    -   0-25% of book    -   26-50% of book

Books with storylines, themes & endings like Most Talkative: Stories from the Front Lines of Pop Culture

Andy Cohen Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
2 Ways to Search!

Our Chief Librarian