Item description for Grace Is Enough by Willie Aames, Maylo Upton-Aames & Carolyn Stanford Goss...
Overview Television star Willie Aames and his wife Maylo Upton recount their Hollywood highs and lows and the grace theyâve found by moving to small-town Kansas.
While actor Willie Aames (Eight Is Enough, Charles in Charge) was at the peak of Hollywood success, his future wife, Maylo Upton, was a teenage runaway, eating out of trash bins and living on the streets to escape the sexual crimes of her cult-ruined mother's barbaric boyfriend. By the time Willie met Maylo, his star was falling because of sex, drugs, rock and roll, and family problems while her acting career was starting to rise. Together, they found God and got their messy lives clean, but the ghosts from their gritty past would duly roughen the road to victory. Grace Is Enough is their fascinating insider story of fame and infamy, spiritual regrets and renewal, and the ultimate realization that with God all things are possible. It will appeal to and greatly inspire everyone from pop culture fans to the traditional Christian nonfiction reader. Endorsements "If you think this is just another Hollywood tell-all book, think again. This story is so much more; it will shock you, but most importantly, it will give you hope and remind us all that God is alive and still in the miracle business." --Rick Burgess and Bill "Bubba" Bussey, radio hosts, "The Rick & Bubba Show" "Willie and Maylo's honesty make this book a heartfelt read. It is inspiring to see a couple so devoted to each other and to their faith." --Lori Loughlin, television actress, "Full House" "A fascinating true story that could only emerge from Hollywood. "Grace Is Enough" is honest, riveting, and unfolds in a compelling way that only a real-life drama can." --Tom Russo, president, Intermedia Television and former vice president of development, Paramount Pictures ""Grace Is Enough" offers an unflinching portrayal of both the grimmest of human nature and the most extraordinary of the human spirit. Willie and Maylo's story is an emotionally brutal one made utterly compelling by uncovering hope and dignity within the midst of fame, greed, lust, excess, and ultimate betrayal. The candid account of these two lives is both touching and disturbing, but in the end, one of the most remarkable and inspiring stories I have ever read." --Chris Maul, Grammnet Productions "Willie and Maylo have been the main characters in their own exciting, action-filled, suspenseful, dramatic and sometimes tragic life story. Their devotion to God and to one another inspires us to reach past the pain and the obstacles in our own lives in order to come to the place where we can agree with them . . . grace is enough." --Kathy Troccoli, singer, speaker, and author
Citations And Professional Reviews Grace Is Enough by Willie Aames, Maylo Upton-Aames & Carolyn Stanford Goss has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Christian Retailing - 11/12/2007 page 21
People Weekly - 02/04/2008 page 135
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Studio: B&H Books
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.13" Width: 6.38" Height: 1.12" Weight: 1.25 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 2007
Publisher Broadman And Holman
ISBN 0805443797 ISBN13 9780805443790
Availability 0 units.
More About Willie Aames, Maylo Upton-Aames & Carolyn Stanford Goss
Willie Aames is among today s best-known former child stars. Previously starring in the hit sitcoms "Eight Is Enough" and "Charles in Charge, " he also made famous the Bibleman brand and recently appeared on VH-1 s "Celebrity Fit Club." Now involved in film production, he lives in Kansas City with his wife, Maylo, and their daughter. Maylo Upton is married to Willie Aames and overcame a tragic upbringing to become an accomplished actress in her own right with credits that include "The A-Team, Hunter," and "Santa Barbara." She currently stars in The Missy Files with her daughter, Harleigh. "
Reviews - What do customers think about Grace Is Enough?
"Honest Heartprints"! Jul 18, 2009
Honest confessions of a Hollywood couple that will make you laugh, cry, cringe and shout out thanksgiving and praise to our Father in heaven for his mercy and grace! I recommend this book for anyone who has gone through family or personal struggles - God will meet you right where you are with loving open arms!
Please Make It End! The Sad Story of a Messed-Up Child Star Apr 30, 2009
I like Willie Aames and was interested in hearing about his Christian story--until I started reading this depressingly detailed book. The first 220 or so pages (out of 280) go into specific intimate details of regularly getting drunk at 14, doing lots of drug, bragging about rebellion--with no redemption in site. For some reason his wife's story is included along side his, even though she is not well known, and the final uplift only comes very near the end.
This is one messed-up couple. They go back and forth to chronicle their histories of being wild kids, parented by ignorant adults who allowed them to get into all sorts of things that children should not be doing at a young age. The wife's story in particular is really unnecessary, with the molestation and bizarre cult that the mother was involved in. Maylo should have been a minor character that came in near the end of Willie's story, but instead for most of the book she seems to get more of the focus.
Willie comes off like some grown-up college frat boy proud of what he got away with when he was young. There's not a lot of humility here, not even lessons learned from the terrible things he was involved in. He just treats it all like it was normal. He doesn't even have many good stories to tell about his TV years--maybe he can't remember them due to his constant drinking and drugging. For example, it's sad to hear him think it was funny to ride on a Christmas parade float with drugs that he had delivered in the middle of the parade route.
The title is deceptive--there's very little grace in this book. It's mostly focused on the bad things these people did. And by the middle of the book you will find yourself screaming "Please make it end!" There really is very little Christian content to it. The cover of the book focuses on the drugs and not the Christianity (which correctly reflects the book). And then there's the problem with the authors' names. Willie Aames is really named Willie Upton, but instead the book is authored by "Willie Aames and Maylo Upton-Aames." What's with that? Are they Uptons or Aames?
Both of these people need some serious help and direction. The book would have been better told by an objective biographer with little involvement from the couple because the way these two present their stories they make it sound like abnormality is normal and that they haven't learned many lessons from their past.
We're inspired to believe that even the darkest history, the bleakest future, can be transformed by God... Dec 13, 2008
If you're not old enough to remember the tv shows "Eight is Enough" and "Charles in Charge", you may be young enough to remember Bibleman, the guy in spandex who traveled the country with his childrens' ministry. Either way, you've seen Willie Aames. He and his wife Maylo have an astounding testimony of grace and healing, and they share it here in gory, but not gratuitous, detail.
The dual first person stories parallel each other through the first 3/4 of the book and then come together as the story of a marriage and family striving to serve God amidst financial pressures and the staring eyes of the public. It's a tell-all, but the purpose isn't to rat out people, both famous and infamous. It's to give us a clear picture of who and what helped put these two souls on a path toward Christ. They are honest and intimate as they share with us both the triumphs and the humiliating experiences that helped to shape them as children. "The first time I tried to hang myself, I was three or four years old," Willie tells us, and we can't exactly put the book down after that. He gives us lots of boy stories in a much less developed southern California and Mexico during the 60's. He even reveals some bad experiences that until this book, he's never before shared.
Maylo's memories of her parents are painful to read, especially those of her mother. There really isn't much good to say about her, even though Maylo tries. This woman betrayed her little girl in many ways, subjecting her to unthinkable sexual and physical abuse from a stream of boyfriends. It's hard to imagine any child's reality this horrifying, as Maylo doesn't spare some graphic details. Maylo's view of God was skewed by her mother's occult involvement and her many "visions", and she lived in constant fear. Finally running away from home when she was a young teenager, Maylo lived on the streets in Hollywood and becomes addicted to drugs.
Meanwhile, Willie is becoming an actor, and he doesn't shy away from telling you what he thinks about his previous costars and acquaintances, from Madonna's snobbery to Tom Hanks' congeniality. We come close to getting bogged down in name dropping and studio pranks, but it all serves a purpose, contrasting this glamorous life with his fall from stardom later on.
Maylo's account of her first acting job is fascinating, just like you would imagine it would be. She goes home after interviewing along with fifty other much more beautiful girls, sure she didn't get the part, only to get the call the next day that she did!
We get to hear both her and Willie's version of how they met, working on a tv show together. By then Maylo was hardened and cynical with an eating disorder. Willie was determined to be her knight in shining armor, to rescue her from all her pain. Although he tries valiantly to do this, the pain only get worse when she discovers she has cervical cancer from all the sexual abuse of her childhood. It would be a while before they learn that only God can truly heal them of their wounds.
It's a cautious walk towards salvation for both of them. Maylo remembers "It was great to let go and let some softness come in, but there was the other Maylo, Street Maylo, who was so afraid of losing her coolness if she became a Christian." Eventually they come to the Lord together, and they are baptized and married on the same special day.
From here they move to Kansas, and Bibleman is born shortly after. Maylo learns to depend on God as she raises their little girl alone as Willie travels to minister to kids. She develops into a grateful and mature woman of God during this time. Willie grows too, and he sees the best and worst of the church through his travels, which he speaks about openly. He finishes ten years as Bibleman with a serious back injury, disillusioned in some ways, but so thankful for the 90,000 kids who gave their lives to Christ through it. After his weight ballooned from the back injury, he is a contestant on Celebrity Fit Club.
The book ends with a fifteen page interview with the couple and their filmographies. This family has lost the fortune that came to them in their early acting careers to law suits and the IRS, but they are rich in a better way. Willie makes documentaries with the Outdoor Channel, but it's clear they aren't out of the financial woods. Every day is a chance to trust God for their most basic needs. And we are inspired by the honesty with which they have shared their struggles with us, how they have been broken and healed. We're inspired to believe that even the darkest history, the bleakest future, can be transformed by God into a peaceful and fulfilling life.
--Reviewed by Carol Kurtz for TitleTrakk
What a journey Nov 19, 2008
I just finished reading this book, what an amazing journey this couple has been on. An excellent read, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes to read stories of real people living out real hard circumstances in life and persevering!
This book should be re-categorized to "fiction" Aug 26, 2008
I'll give Willie the benefit of the doubt, which is more than he's given first wife Victoria, by saying all the drugs and alcohol have affected his memory. If he remembered what REALLY happened, he would've written that when he and Victoria split up, he left her and their son, Christopher, with nothing. Willie was never left alone with his son as he states in the book. Willie gave no child support, nor did he spend a heck of a lot of time with Christopher growing up. Thanks to the beautiful person that Victoria is, with her parents and sister, Christopher grew up to be a very fine person who would make any parent proud. I don't know about Maylo's story, or the rest of Willie's, but this terrible inaccuracy puts their whole book in question.