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Book Chat – Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison

Title: Down the Rabbit Hole: Curious Adventures and Cautionary Tales of a Former Playboy Bunny.

Author: Holly Madison.

Rating: 4/5

For those of you like me who spent their teenage years in the early 2000’s, you will already be familiar with the pop-culture take over that was Playboy. Ranging from bedspreads, jewellery and temporary tattoos through to the popular hit TV show The Girls Next Door, Playboy took over every teenaged girl and boys’ bedroom for many years. Being a huge fan of the show, I was thrilled to hear that Holly Madison, the star of The Girls Next Door and Hugh Hefner’s Number One Girlfriend, had written a tell-all memoir about her time in the Playboy Mansion. And let me tell you, it does not disappoint. Entitled Down the Rabbit Hole – Curious Adventures and Cautionary Tales of a Former Playboy Bunny, Holly Madison takes the reader on a wild ride through a bitchy and gossipy jungle of lies and manipulation, dragging us down the rabbit hole and destroying the picture perfect idea of wholesome young girls and an abundance of sex that Playboy had provided us for years.

The revelations within this book are mind-blowing. Beginning when Holly was 22 years old and just entering the mansion through to her final departure, Holly reveals a world of vicious, manipulating Bunnies who are stabbing each other in the back to become a Playmate. She divulges bizarre orgy-style bedtime routines with all the girls in pink pyjamas, unbelievably strict routines and oppressive rules around clothing, make-up and who they can and cannot speak to. Holly even gives us the inside goss on what life was like filming the TV series, revealing how plots were twisted to make her look like a devoted girlfriend or portraying a happy friendship that was quickly becoming nasty. She goes beyond her time in the mansion to show how outside its walls, life was not all that rosy either with people using her for her fame. But what is really shocking are the revelations of Hef. From temper-tantrums and soul-destroying control of Holly through to using money to silence the girls, Hef is portrayed as the perfect villain trapping a helpless Beauty in her tower.

The memoir includes many references to Marilyn Munroe, old Hollywood glamour and Alice in Wonderland which creates a fairy-tale tone of a beautiful damsel taken hostage by a nasty sex-crazed old man. Each chapter begins with a quote from either Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland or Through the Looking Glass which sets up the chapter to follow. Woven through-out the memoir are hints of Alice from costumes Holly wears to Playboy parties or mentions of the world inside the mansion which twists, turns and confuses each Bunny that sets foot inside its doors.

The memoir is easy to read and it flows smoothly from one point to another. She does change the names of the girlfriends in the book, however a quick Google search reveals who each character is if you get curious. So, if you spent your teenage years watching Holly and the girls on the E! Channel, you will not want to miss this memoir. A mixture of 70’s porno meets fairy-tale glamour, this is one memoir that I promise will not disappoint.

To get your copy – head over here to Book Depository!


Categories: Book Review

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Bookstore Manager by day, reader and writer by night.
I enjoy:
reading books,
touching books,
stacking books,
writing books,
talking about books,
other people who work with books,
sniffing books and photographing books.

2 replies

  1. Like you, I really enjoyed reading Holly’s memoir. Also, in a way, it made me incredibly sad. I own all the seasons of the Girls Next Door and was so obsessed with their portrayal of friendship and love with Hef that it really saddened me to see that it all wasn’t true. I guess that’s just reality TV at its finest, but I’m happy that she is in a healthier place in life. Nice post!


    1. It made me sad too, especially with the red lipstick story and how she is so beautiful but Hef just tore her down. And you’re right, their friendship was so amazing to watch but in the end, it was just all for the cameras. Have you read her 2nd book Vegas Diaries? I haven’t yet but it’s on my list of books to buy

      Liked by 1 person

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