Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing: A Memoir

Written by:
Matthew Perry
Narrated by:
Matthew Perry

Unabridged Audiobook

Ratings
Book
676
Narrator
219
Release Date
November 2022
Duration
8 hours 49 minutes
Summary
'Going into his 'why,' Perry's audiobook is a fascinating listen.'- AudioFile

This program is read by the author.

A MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK BY TIME, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, GOODREADS, USA TODAY, AND MORE!

The beloved star of Friends takes us behind the scenes of the hit sitcom and his struggles with addiction in this candid, funny, and revelatory memoir that delivers a powerful message of hope and persistence.

“Hi, my name is Matthew, although you may know me by another name. My friends call me Matty. And I should be dead.”

So begins the riveting story of acclaimed actor Matthew Perry, taking us along on his journey from childhood ambition to fame to addiction and recovery in the aftermath of a life-threatening health scare. Before the frequent hospital visits and stints in rehab, there was five-year-old Matthew, who traveled from Montreal to Los Angeles, shuffling between his separated parents; fourteen-year-old Matthew, who was a nationally ranked tennis star in Canada; twenty-four-year-old Matthew, who nabbed a coveted role as a lead cast member on the talked-about pilot then called Friends Like Us. . . and so much more.

In an extraordinary story that only he could tell—and in the heartfelt, hilarious, and warmly familiar way only he could tell it—Matthew Perry lays bare the fractured family that raised him (and also left him to his own devices), the desire for recognition that drove him to fame, and the void inside him that could not be filled even by his greatest dreams coming true. But he also details the peace he’s found in sobriety and how he feels about the ubiquity of Friends, sharing stories about his castmates and other stars he met along the way. Frank, self-aware, and with his trademark humor, Perry vividly depicts his lifelong battle with addiction and what fueled it despite seemingly having it all.

Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing is an unforgettable memoir that is both intimate and eye-opening—as well as a hand extended to anyone struggling with sobriety. Unflinchingly honest, moving, and uproariously funny, this is the audiobook fans have been waiting for.

A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books.
Reviews
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Anonymous

Wanted to like this. Wanted to see this as a story for those struggling. It's not. It's mean and it's lacking in personal responsibility. the Keanu comments...wtf. Can I get my money back for a book that sucks?

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Anonymous

Loved it from start to finish.

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Laurie T.

Guttural. As a 20 year old that watched the pilot of Friends in 1994 and cried like a baby on the last episode, I was devoted to the entire cast. I too played the game, “Which ‘Friend’ would you want?” Answer: “Chandler.” I knew I wanted to hear what Matthew Perry had to say, but I’m the release of the book already started to get an inside idea. I knew through the press years ago that he had some challenges and left it there. Be careful meeting your hero’s, part of my take away. Matthew made choices I can not comprehend. I also can not imagine the pain he must have felt in his mind. If this book is a giant thank you to the hundreds of people who helped him over decades, it probably still isn’t enough. Does this book bring another magnifying glass to mental health, I hope so to those that listen. For me, I had to take this in 30-45 mins doses because I found it to be so painful and at times a little irritating. His story is his and his life has been very much a challenge. His gift is greater than his demons, I hope.

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Perkibest22

This was more a story about addiction than the TV show Friends. I was engrossed in the story until the last hour or so when he repeated the same thing over and over again. Eh.

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Anonymous

This guy has huge ego. Sad he trash all rehabs his close friends leave him because he so selfish. The part that really took the cake. A very close friend who saved his life many times opened up rehab and Matt gave him 500 thousand - less that a weeks work. Pay at Friends. When the rehab did not do well— he asked for his money back. WTF. Needless to say all his friends abandoned him. He’s very ungrateful spoiled self centered He brags he helped people- but no stories to back it up. He to busy talking about how wonderful he is. I like watching him on friends but his life story is cycle selfishness big ego. I ended dislike him as a person Big time. Shame on you Matt- any person trying get sober would be so discouraged by the way you trash ALL rehabs

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PokeSmot

My mind is blown by some of these negative reviews. I think this is one of the best books I have ever read in my life, his insight into the addiction and personalities and way of life that happens when you’re in a hard-core addiction is so spot on that only those of us who know, know. This book is real and to the bone when it comes to addiction and alcoholism at times I thought he was telling my story that’s how real it feels. I hope it helps many other people and shows that they can conquer evil demons through lots of perseverance and dedication. You can do it.

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Empress Lulu

I loved it. As someone who grew up watching Friends, it was amazing to me that we have no clue sometimes the struggles that are happening behind the scenes of anyone. It makes me realize we need to be kinder in this world and check in on everyone we love. We never know the back side to anyone or the demons they struggle with on a daily basis.

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Danielle G.

Wild story.

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Tracy P.

it's amazing how honest he was. makes me look at his body of work differently. I love his venerablity.

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Julie C.

Listened twice… Chandler was my fav, Matthew Perry, someone my age I literally grew up with, well.. he was on the screen and I was in Ohio..a girl can dream… he was so raw, real, and his voice made me cheer, laugh and cry out in middle of the night when he fell back off the preverbal wagon.. finished it couple months before that terrible news on 10/24/23.. Literally said out loud, NO, No, NO!!! I wanted him to have his happy ending…. Somehow I just know, he is totally happy and healthy in Heaven.. but we will truly miss his spirit on earth… Oh Mat-Man… I just know Jesus is giggling..

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Nett

Loved the man, love the book!

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Leola C.

Absolutely loved hearing his story and found myself laughing and crying

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ThisStateReads

Well written and read by such a prominent TV sitcom actor. Cried as I listened, but loved how it showed the struggles of fame and addiction.

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Linda P.

I was compelled to know his story, but it was not very well written, with a lot of repeats and story flashbacks that were hard to follow. Also, the many trips from sobriety back to addiction made it hard to keep track of where he was in the story.

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Lynda D.

Great book

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Anonymous

I hope it was beneficial for him and others addicts wanting to get sober. For me I heard too much self pity and blame and not taking responsibility for his decisions. He complains about flying to see parents alone. He had 2 parents that loved him. Grow up in a violent home and see what that's like.

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Jessica S.

I wanted to love this, and had been wanting to read for awhile… thought it was time, especially after his passing, but it was harder to get through than I anticipated and was honestly, quite depressing. It also contained some repeating stories and some timelines were a bit confusing/overlapping which made certain parts a bit hard to follow.

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Stephanie G.

So sad. Just a tragic sad reminder that you never know what someone is masking.

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Theresa A.

I loved it from cover to cover. It Wars hard to listen to sometimes. His struggle was long and painful. Addiction is a lifelong disease and it took strength and courage to open up the way he did. I truly felt all his pain, his regrets and his awareness of his relapses. He was lucky enough to have parents who loved him unconditionally and friends who stepped in. I’ve already recommended it to several friends. Thank you, Matt, for sharing your journey.

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Mary A.

I am surprised at how something, that was at times so painful to listen to, could fill me with hope.

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Caroline D.

Interesting to hear how he struggled despite getting everything we seek in life. I think it was a little long and at times confusing. I wish he was clearer on his time line.

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Vincent S.

Awesome enjoyed every moment listening as I was driving up state two and a half hours up and 3 hours back felt liked I was in the car for an hour only

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Allison S.

This was an honest and raw. It shines a light on addiction. It must have been incredibly difficult to write. I hope it helps those who are struggling

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Shannon S.

Honest and humbling accounts of triumph mixed with the harrowing tribulations that come with addiction

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Sara W.

Growing up a 90’s kid, I’ve been watching Friends as long as I can remember, and Chandler was always my favorite character. Yes, Matthew Perry’s drug problems were in the news from time to time, but this firsthand account of exactly what he went through is more enlightening, heartbreaking, and hopeful than I could have ever imagined. I don’t have the gene, and stories like this are the closest I’ll get to understanding addiction. Stripping away all Hollywood glam and all pride, Matthew Perry splays out his naked soul for us all to better understand and, in my case, more thoroughly love. I cannot believe he is gone. After all that he went through. After all he overcame. May his memoir be a tale of hope for “all the sufferers out there, you know who you are.”

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Brenda C.

Matty you will be missed and heart feels so much pain knowing how hard that all must have been .proyecyonb your self with such a burden to carry . I related to the beast I know it well not from myself from living with an alcoholic and watching it eat him every day until there nothing left but to see someone else go through this same thing is complete torture . You see when the beast is done with a alcoholic or addict it ends in death I just happen to be standing there when he did it and came face to face with that beast.rest in peace Matty no more fighting no more sickness no more hiding . This disease takes the best of the best and yes it is a disease.I have seen many struggle and never win even the best won’t win .it’s is such a shame he couldn’t turn this around it seemed he really wanted to but the disease had such a hold on him. Everyone hears rehab all rehabs are not with a cut out to be summer better than others most of them don’t keep their patience among enough and they relapse I know this because I lived with somebody for a very long time that I had to go through this he’s in heaven now in a better place. So is Matthew Perry such a great actor such a great comedian

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Anonymous

It was super interesting.

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Julie F.

I joined Audiobooks specifically to listen to listen to this book following MP's untimely death. I love Matthew Perry. He IS his character Chandler Bing. But listening to this book was not something I would recommend. He comes off as so whiney, and so self-centered, and always the victim. And he skipped around so much. It could have been better, perhaps, with a good editor, but I didn't enjoy it at all. What a waste of money.

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Tiffany T.

This book was needed for a long-time friends fan. When Matthew Perry passed away at the end of October, I knew I needed to listen to him tell his life story. With previous life experience (albeit much less) alike Matthews it was a real treasure to find someone who understood things and who faught it his entire life, showing that you can survive but its rarely fun and games even with money and everything you could ever want. It just shows that the disease is unbeatable in some genes. And to see that he was given drugs at such a young age and survived so long was inspirational. The first few lines, that he should be dead, gave me goosebumps because now that he is, it is impossible to believe. He was the best part of everything he was in and will be dearly missed forever. I am also rewatching friends, and I can connect parts of the book to episodes of the show. It is sad but great.

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Judy W.

I hope more people read and listen to this book. His captures the unfathomable journey to sobriety. People without any addictions have no idea how tough it is. Perry tells it all… and it’s not pretty. He will be missed. RIP Matty.

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Anonymous

better I didn't listen, I disappointed

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Ernesto 213

Great details. excellent story telling. keanu comments eye opening. will recommend Rest In Peace Matty

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Ashley S.

Worth the listen for any Matthew Perry or friends fan and certainly for any of us impacted by addition of any kind. What a talent he was. What a force for good.

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Kiki

Well informed on his disease

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Mamaprice8

Absolutely amazing!!!

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Alex S.

well written. hearing matthew narrate his own story made it perfect. the inflection and tone allowed for the reader to feel as thought he were in the room sharing his story. well done.

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Tammie L.

I found myself sitting on his couch and we are the best of friends facing each other as he spoke I was hanging on to every word he spoke. He made me laugh and cry and I love the way he expressed himself from beginning to the end. When he was done telling me his story I was sad, I have enjoyed him sharing with me the other side of Matthew that I did not see each week sitting on my couch watching Friends for ten years. Good night sweet Matthew and thank you for being a friend!

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C W.

I am so saddened after reading Matthew Perry’s book. It has completely stained my view of Chandler and I hate that. I wanted to like this book. But i don’t. It was Matthew’s story and that’s fine. The plus side of listening to this book is that I have understanding now. It has given me compassion and understanding of an addict’s life but I didn’t enjoy how it was written. The timeline is very messy and all over the place. It was hard to follow along. Each chapter had a theme and then there were “interludes” which made it hard to follow his thought. It was not beautifully written. It seemed like a very juvenile tone.

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Andrea Jill J.

Absolutely loved this book. Matthew Perry will be missed.

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Anonymous

I found it inspiring, honest, real and, although incredibly sad, also hopeful. I read it after his passing and it made me emotional to realize how much he’d gone through and how much happier he was to be sharing his story honestly and helping people. Wishing you great peace and love on the other side, Matthew.

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Bluesman

Listening to him speak after he has finally passed away is very surreal, I’ve heard him speak on television and the big silver screen but this just sitting in a room with him telling us his life story is for all Intents and purposes is now his goodbye story, and a very one at that.

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Satyaki D.

A perfect listening experience.

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Kristie S.

Loved this book.

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Jae L.

Wow! I am shocked of the life he lived in the mist of all the fame. Excellent listen and emotional. Thank you for sharing your story with us. May your future bring the joy and peace you’ve desperately desired.

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Christina B.

Very open about a very personal and raw subject. Truthful and funny. Good listen you can tell he’s changed by recent experiences.

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Russ S.

Thank you for your courage in sharing your story. I found it helpful to hear about your struggles and the power of addiction. I listened to it twice.

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Anonymous

Not bad listen. I felt “I’m an addict” was very repetitive and over used. Interesting about the friends piece as they all knew and were supportive. The plane piece and descriptions used were great to paint the picture.

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Araceli G.

I just started to read it and so far good I recommend

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Kevin C.

I too struggle with demons...while listening too Matty tell of his demons ...I was moved too tears for the pain and struggles he has survived...Keep working the Steps

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Justin B.

A sad but inspiring listen. Opened by eyes to the disease of addiction. I hope 'matty' is able to stay clean and sober.

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Tina D.

He is a great narrator! His comical delivery and charm are based on self loathing and is very well timed. I listened to this almost non stop. I had to take breaks to shake my head but very quick read. On a personal note, I find him to be a spoiled brat. I still don’t know what his mother did so wrong??? The life he felt he deserved is one that he should have given himself, not submerge into addiction because it wasn’t aligned perfectly. Holly-weird as they say…. Sigh. Love listening though. I’m very happy he is well!

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Anonymous

Great book and insight into his troubled life

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Angela M.

Really really moving. The intricacies of his addictions and pain in his childhood and the deep wounds he carried helps the listeners understand addictions on a deeper level. I have so much compassion and sorrow and love for him and what he suffered with. It takes real bravery and vulnerability to share this, especially since he is so famous. Thank you Matthew, I hope you find your love and you continue to love a full life free from pull to escape. Xo, Angela

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Anonymous

Thank you Matthew Perry.

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Rosemary C.

Interesting poignant story told by a comedian about his very tortured life due to his drug/alcohol addiction. It’s practically impossible to believe that he survived all of his crashes but thank God he did. Such hope for so many out there who are fighting addiction! They are not bad people, they are addicted to the crutch. Easy to understand. Hope and pray you stay clean!!

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Marianne S.

Very open and honest. Proud of Matthew Perry for sharing his story.

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Anonymous

Very good, interesting, sad, and funny.

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Suzy C.

The story was very good and interesting. It’s helpful by giving insight into what it’s like to live, fighting such strong addiction. Matthew doesn’t hold back so at times you wonder why anyone would want to be his friend. It’s likely his humor. He uses self deprecating yet honest humor as he tells about his life. It was a very interesting book and it was done before I knew it.

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Anonymous

It was tough subject matter and i needed to take breaks, but I did appreciate his humor. He is an addict and therefore his behavior and mindset is that of an addict and can come off as entitled, when in fact he’s- an addict.

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Megan G.

entertaining the way he describes things. so crazy to see the sad and hard life he has lived.

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Pamela Brown

Totally awesome.

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Anonymous

My heart goes out to Matthew Perry. Addiction is no joke, the fact that he overcame it should be celebrated!

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Mary F.

If you are a Matthew Perry fan you will love this book. Glad that he finally got it together.

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Emily R.

One of the best books I’ve listened to in a long time. Matthew is a great storyteller and incorporates his humor and sarcasm during the most intense parts. His raw honesty and desire to help others who struggle with addiction is inspiring. It will be a definite listen-again book for me!

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Laura Z.

Great book

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Lori D.

I am amazed by your honesty and heartbroken of what your 30 years have brought you Matthew . My son is 25 and I’m devastated of what he is going through any guidance would be most grateful. Thank you Matthew for your beautiful journey! You are truly loved …Always, Lori Dean

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Nancy K.

I thought Matthew Perry's memoir was honest and brave, but most importunately much about love & compassion. I hope this memoir will continue to help him stay sober and live a healthy joyful life. It's never too late!

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Anonymous

What a brave, honest and great memoir. As a huge fan of Matty’s I love him more now than ever. He is brutally honest about his struggles and owns it. He is just a genuine guy.

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Anonymous

very good boom

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LGKAI

Great memoir! Loved it!

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Jeanne M.

I will never watch friends the same again!

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