Peggy Lipton’s overnight success as Julie Barnes on television’s hit The Mod Squad made her an instant fashion icon and the “it” girl everyone-from Elvis to Paul McCartney-wanted to date. She was the original and ultimate California girl of the early seventies, complete with stick-straight hair, a laid-back style, and a red convertible. But Lipton was much more: smart and determined to not be just another leggy blonde, she struggled for a way to stay connected to her childhood roots, though her coming of age had not been an easy one. And when she fell in love with Quincy Jones, that wasn’t easy, either: their biracial marriage made headlines and changed her life.
Lipton’s passionate and complicated seventeen-year marriage to Jones plunged her into motherhood and also into periods of confusion and difficulty. Her struggle to keep moving forward in the world while maintaining a rich inner life informed many of her decisions as an adult. When Lipton’s marriage to Jones ended, she returned to television, appearing in David Lynch’s Twin Peaks as well as in The Vagina Monologues and other stage productions. But her most recent triumph has been her overcoming a surprising diagnosis of colon cancer in 2003.
Breathing Out is full of fresh stories of life with the pop culture icons of our times, but is also a much more thoughtful book about life in the limelight, work, motherhood, and marriage. It’s a refreshing and real look at the life of an actress who became, in many senses, a woman of her times.