Thursday, February 3, 2011
Charles Perez's startlingly honest book "Confessions of a Gay Anchorman," part memoir, part coming out story and part celebrating his own liberation, is sure to generate attention. Some of the attention will come from Perez's talking openly about his association with some of the leading names in media over his lifespan. The litany of stories in the book about newspersons who he speculates about being homosexual to those who he worked with over the years is simply amazing.
Perez has cut a wide swath from the early days of talk shows to being a kingpin in several ABC local news teams. The stories range from an intimate evening with David Geffin in his Malibu home to scoring a major news coup with an interview with President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela.
"Confessions" takes us to the early days of Rikki Lake, Montel Williams and Geraldo Rivera. From his work behind the scenes in the heyday of talk shows, he was granted his own show - The Charles Perez Show. Despite increasing ratings, the show came to an abrupt end when rumors of his homosexuality started in the gossip circles. Breaking into the solid news world, he quickly rose to the top ending up at ABC flagship station in New York as an anchor. Clearly unhappy, he returned to his beloved Miami and took over the anchor of the ABC network in that city. A very bad relationship that went public, lawsuits and bitter charges of homophobia ended his stint in the news.
While Perez spares no one in his book, the person he is most difficult on himself. With brutal honesty he talks about his sexuality, struggle with alcohol, deep shame and finally finding love and happiness with his husband and their child. While the book is a page turner, I wanted to know more about his childhood and lovers. Despited telling so much about himself, there is more to know.
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