Alex Trebek: Jeopardy! host and TV personality. Son, brother, husband, and father. Friend and philanthropist.
We will miss you, Alex. Thank you for giving us one last gift before you left.
Alex Trebek’s memoir was released in July of 2020 before his death from stage IV pancreatic cancer just three months later. His book is full of short anecdotes that exude love and adventure. He’s filled it with captioned pictures that are absolutely stunning.
Raised in Sudbury, Canada, Alex spent a lot of time at the Nickel Range Hotel where his father, George, was a chef. His mother, Lucille, was a homemaker who raised him alongside his little sister, Barbara. Alex attended the University of Ottawa where he studied philosophy before starting his career in radio and television.
“The exercise taught me a valuable lesson though: knowing what the goals are in life is very important. Sometimes we can make mistakes. Robert Frost took the road less traveled, and it worked out well for him, but that isn’t true for everyone. And sometimes you have to understand what your true goal is in order to achieve it. And we don’t always understand that.”-Alex Trebek
My favorite chapter is “Who is…George Alexander Trebek?” This is such a brief chapter it only takes one paragraph. We learn that he goes by Alex so he isn’t confused with his father George Edward Trebek, as his given name is George Alexander Trebek. The sweetest part is that his family always called him “Sonny” though.
The Answer Is… spends a lot of time on Alex’s early radio and TV career and how he got lucky to be the Jeopardy! host. He is incredibly talented with an enormous amount of experience in his business. There was a good chunk of the book dedicated to an inside look at Jeopardy! I really enjoyed his recap of well-known players and some of his favorite moments during his 36 years as the host.
A few chapters address his illness and treatment. Mostly, it seems that Alex is accepting of his diagnosis and wants something good to come from it. He aims to help others suffering from similar ailments.
“Courage is a conscious decision.”-Alex Trebek
I was stunned by how humble and generous Mr. Trebek was. I have a feeling he downplays this too. He writes of incredible experiences giving hands-on help to those in need all over the world, mostly in Africa. He is incredibly generous with money and time for quite a long list of charities.
I finished Alex Trebek’s memoir in just one day. I was so very excited to read this book. It was more than I imagined. Heartfelt and genuine, just like the man himself. There are a lot of personal tidbits in here that you’ll relate to. For me, it was highly relatable that he is always 10 minutes early for everything.
If you want to read more celebrity memoirs, check out another one of my posts: 7 Inspiring Celebrity Memoirs, Biographies, and Autobiographies.
I highly recommend The Answer Is…: Reflections on My Life by Alex Trebek. This memoir is stunning. Thank you, Alex, for everything.