There have been many books about Olivia - most of them are from her Seventies period and the time of Grease, which means they are out of print now. The standard of writing and accuracy varies from the mundane to the truly awful. Don't believe anything you read in a book about Olivia unless you read it elsewhere - there are still people chasing after ONJ memorabilia which never existed but was listed in Gregory Branson-Trent's first book! Writing apart, many of the books are redeemed by having rare photographs. Some of these you can buy from Amazon is shown.
Title: Olivia, Author: Darren Mason, Publisher: Minerva Press, 1999, UK, ppbk 160 pp ISBN 0754108171
Six pages of nice monochrome pictures in this pleasing fan's eye view of Olivia's career - more factually accurate and indepth than most other books about her!
Recommended.Out of print
Title: Frenchy's Grease Scrapbook, Author: Didi Conn, Publisher: Hyperion, 1998, ppbk 180 pp ISBN 0786883456
Lots of Olivia pictures in this book written by the actress who plays Frenchy in the movie Grease. Some interesting background, and several rare photos, though sometimes the photo quality leaves a little to be desired.
Out of print
Title: A Pig Tale, Author: Olivia Newton-John, Brian Seth Hurst, Publisher: Simon Schuster, 1993, USA hbk 30 pp ISBN 0689824289
This one is by Olivia and not about Olivia, though it has a nice color photo on the back cover. A nicely illustrated children's tale with an environmental theme.
Out of print
Title: Olivia Newton-John, Author: Peter Ruff, Publisher: Quick Fox 1979, ppbk 96 pp USA.ISBN: 0825639344
This one is of the best of the bunch of Olivia biographies. It begins inaccurately, stating "Olivia was born on September 29, 1950..." (she was born on September 26th 1948) but after this shaky start we have a pleasing late-Seventies perspective on Olivia's career. Peter Ruff's book is a cornucopia of rare 60's and 70's black-and-white pictures to delight fans, and by the general standards of ONJ books his writing stands out as being competent and readable.
Title: The Olivia Newton-John Companion. Author: Edward Wincentsen, Publisher: Wynn Publishing. 2001, USA pbk 198 pages. ISBN 0-9710591-0-1
A self-published book with a collection of archive articles, fans' photos and fans' stories about meeting Olivia etc. The articles chosen concentrate mostly on Olivia's private life, although at least the author points out that press cuttings don't always reveal the true story. Color cover, plus 8 color pages of photos plus over 30 pages of black and white photos.
Olivia Newton-John: Sunshine Supergirl, Author, Linda Jacobs Publisher: Altman 1975, USA. ppbk ISBN 0884361845
Pleasant Seventies book pitched at a young-ish readership (with Olivia's story used as a role model and for inspiration). Some nice pictures.
Title: Magic: The Music of Olivia Newton-John. Author: Gregory Branson-Trent, Publisher: Trafford Publishing. 2007, Canada, pbk 280 pages. ISBN 978-1-4251-2393-2
A self-published book with many black and white photos (mostly taken from the internet and not great quality). The author discusses Olivia's career and her music and movie releases.Color cover. This is Gregory's second book about Olivia, "More Than Physical was published in 1994. More details
Title: Grease, Author: Ron D Christoforo, Publisher: Magnum, 1978, rep 1998, ppbk 220 pp
14 pages of reasonably sharp b/w Grease photos. The novel is so-so, basically it is the story of the film told from Sonny's point of view.
Title: Olivia Newton-John: Rock n' Pop Star, Author: Ann Morse Publisher: Creative Education Society 1976, USA ppbk ISBN 0871914751
A book written for teenagers with a lowdown of Olivia's career to date with hand drawings.
Title: 1999 Big Movie TV Songs, Publisher Warner Bros Publications, USA, ppbk, ISBN 076929118
Featuring the sheet music for Love Is A Gift (p83) which many people have been looking for!
Title: Countdown: the Wonder Years 1974-87, Author: Dave Warner, Publisher: ABC Books. Australia June 2006. ppk, ISBN: 07333 14015
A book looking back on the Australian TV series Countdown. Olivia appeared for a dance contest to promote Xanadu in 1980. The book includes a short report of this and two photos from this: one full-page in colour and one smaller black and white. Also released was an audio CD.
Title: Olivia, More than Physical Author: Gregory Branson-Trent, Publisher: Collector's Guide 1994, Canadian ppbk 152 pp ISBN 0969573669
A low-budget collection of facts, poorly scanned photographs and writing, this so-called 'collector's guide' has sent ONJ collectors on a wild-goose chase after collectibles that never existed. The author starts badly on page 7 where "Olivia's first taste of the music business was the 1970 film Tomoorow" where in fact her first Decca 45 predated that by four years. More details Out of print
Title: Hollywood Moms, Author: Joyce Ostin, Introduction by Carrie Fisher, Publisher: Abrams, 2001, USA hbk 112 pages ISBN 0-8109-4157-0
A coffee sized publication featuring candid portraits of 50 of entertainment's mothers and daughters. Includes a lovely full page black and white photo of Olivia and Chloe and one page of short prose.
Title: All Woman: Life After Breast Cancer, Author: Tania Farrell Yelland, Publisher Metro 2000. UK. ppk 204pp ISBN 1842410040 UK.
30 remarkable women from all walks of life tell how they faced up to the fear and uncertainty surrounding being diagnosed with breast cancer and how they have come through with a zest for life. There's a 5 page chapter from Olivia (based on three interviews she gave to the UK newspaper Daily Mail) including a full page colour photo.
Title: The Billboard Book of Number One Contemporary Hits, Author: Wesley Hyatt, Publisher: Billboard Books/Watson-Guptill, ppbk 428pp ISBN 0823076938
This book lists every Adult Contemporary (AC) chart topper from 1961 to March 1999. Olivia appears 10 times for number one AC hits beginning with If Not For You to her last to date Magic in 1980 (the book has a total of about 8 ONJ pages including two black and white photos). The write-ups to Olivia's AC hits include comments by producer John Farrar which make it particularly interesting.
Title: Living Simply With Cancer, Author: Ross Taylor, Publisher: Lifeforce 1998 ppbk. Australia 97pp ISBN 0646308750
An Australian booklet with a holistic approach to coping with a diagnosis of cancer. Olivia writes the foreword to the book (2 pages including small black and white photo).
Title: The Midnight Special, Author: B.R.Hunter, Publisher VH1/Pocket Books 1998, ppbk 158pp ISBN 0671014277
All about the Seventies American music TV special with photos, line-ups and details including some 70s appearances by Olivia.
Title: Olivia Newton-John, Back With A Heart Publisher Warner/Chappell Music 1998, Australia, ppbk 32pp
Australian music book with Piano/Vocal/chords music to the songs Close To Me, Spinning His Wheels, Under My Skin, Back With A Heart; I Honestly Love You. Details.
Title: Piano Solo - Olivia Newton-John, Publisher: Kawai 1997, Japan. ppbk 64pp ISBN 4760908609
Japanese Piano book, with a very nice (colour!) cover picture of Olivia, and the music for 13 songs. Details
Title: Grease, Author: Michael Newman, Publisher: Fotonovel 1978, ppbk ~100 pp
Fun comic-strip adaptation of the film using stills from the movie.
Title: Superstars of the 70s, Author: various, Publisher: Octopus (UK)1976, hbk ~90 pp
Four-page section on Olivia with nice large format colour pic, and reasonably detailed/accurate early UK period bio.
Title: Vanishing Eden: The Plight of the Tropical Rain Forest" By Edward G Atkins Barrons Educational Series; ISBN: 0812062469
Introduction by Olivia (2 pages). Read here
Title: The Gift Of Fear, Author: Gavin de Becker, Publisher: Dell Publishing 1997, hbk ISBN 0316235024
One chapter in which hard man and arch stalker-buster Gav doesn't actually mention Olivia but it's pretty obvious who he's talking about, with tales of midnight chopper surveillance and torrential rain. If you're looking for music and film info this book's not for you :-)
Title: A View From Nashville, Author Ralph Emery, Publisher William Morrow co, hbk 336pp
Ralph Emery talks about the ruckus Olivia caused in the country music scene in the early Seventies, her fight against breast cancer and her BWAH album. Based on Ralph's 1998 TV interview with her (about 6pp plus one half page black and white photo)
Title: We had joy, We had fun.., Author: Barry Scott, Publisher: Faber Faber 1994, ppbk 238 pp
Though Olivia features in just one chapter out of the 22 in this book (11 pages total), it is refreshing to find someone who writes cogently and accurately about Olivia!
Title: ONJ - Piano/Vocal/Chords, Music book, Publisher: ? 1975, ppbk 80 pp
Pleasant US Songbook with many nice color photos and some early '70s press extracts as well as the words and music for several of Olivia's early hits.
Title: Rock 'n Roll, Author: Bruce Welch, Publisher: Viking 1989, hbk 230 pp
Some bitter and twisted musings from an old Shadow who used to go out with Olivia - it's a cracking good read about a part of Olivia's life she still doesn't talk about, though one doubts the absolute veracity of some of Bruce's tales. He's still sore about something about that relationship, even though more than 25 years have passed since then...
Title: Rock Biggest Ten, Author: David Dachs 1979 ppbk
A 14 page chapter about Olivia with black and white photos. Read chapter here
Title: The Hulton Getty Picture Collection: 1970s, Publisher: Koenemann 1998, ppbk ISBN 3-8290-0524-5
Two pages of black and white photos - see here
Title: The Carpenters: The Untold Story, Author: Ray Coleman, Publisher: Boxtree, 1994, ISBN 0-7522-1628-7
Two photos from 1978 and Olivia mentioned a few times in the text
Title: Superwomen of Rock, Author: Susan Katz, Publisher: Tempo 1978, ppbk pp134
18 pages and three b/w photos. History of Olivia up to just before Grease, with some nice quotes from Olivia including the following gem "The world is turning to romance in every area." Olivia philosophizes. "There are more women in films, and violence is slowly disappearing. The success of Charlie's Angels proves that people like to look at pretty things.
Title: Rock Talk, Author: Barbara Rowes, Publisher: Scholastic Books 1977, ppbk pp120
10 page chapter about Olivia
plus two black and white photos. Nice write-up with quotes from Olivia
(taken from press articles). It concentrates on her love of animals and
her early life and career. The author includes Olivia's then breakfast
drink recipe: bran, 1 banana, 1 orange, 1 egg, milk and honey all
blended together. Mmm... we'll stick to the muesli!
Read the chapter
Title: Singing Sweetly, Author: George Zanderbergen Publisher: Crestwood House1976, USA hdbk ISBN 0913940496
A book with three chapters on Cher, Roberta Flack and Olivia with color and black and white photos. Chapter about Olivia 14 pages long, written with a young audience in mind.
Title: Dusty, Author: Lucy O'Brien, Publisher: Sidgwick Jackson 1999, ppbk ISBN 0283063475. UK
Biography of singer Dusty Springfield. Has a nice paragraph about Olivia in relation to the inspiration she gave Dusty when she discovered she had breast cancer. Also contains a small black and white photo circa 1978 of Dusty with Olivia and Rod Stewart
The End of a Certain World: The Life and Science of Max Born; Author: Nancy Thorndike Greenspan; Publisher: Basic Books, 2005; hbk, 374pp, ISBN: 0-7382-0693-8
Biography of Olivia's grandfather Max born. Olivia isn't featured in this book except for a few very brief mentions. It features letters that Olivia's mother Irene translated between Max Born and Einstein. The book is also available in German.
Thanks to Kay Bohlen
The Key: Celebrated People Unlock Their Secrets to Life; Author: Linda
Solomon; Publisher: Stewart Tabori and Chang; October 2007; hbk; 192pp;
The author interviews more than 50 famous people and gets a few line quote from each on various "keys" to life. Olivia gives her key to self-reliance.