Read Where Am I Now?: True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame by Mara Wilson Online


“Growing up, I wanted to be Mara Wilson. Where Am I Now? is a delight.” —Ilana Glazer, cocreator and star of Broad City“Genuine and authentic, funny and heartbreaking.” —Jenny Lawson, author of Let's Pretend This Never Happened and Furiously HappyNamed a best book of the month by GoodReads and Entertainment WeeklyA former child actor best known for her starring roles in Ma“Growing up, I wanted to be Mara Wilson. Where Am I Now? is a delight.” —Ilana Glazer, cocreator and star of Broad City“Genuine and authentic, funny and heartbreaking.” —Jenny Lawson, author of Let's Pretend This Never Happened and Furiously HappyNamed a best book of the month by GoodReads and Entertainment WeeklyA former child actor best known for her starring roles in Matilda and Mrs. Doubtfire, Mara Wilson has always felt a little young and out of place: as the only kid on a film set full of adults, the first daughter in a house full of boys, a Valley girl in New York and a neurotic in California, and a grown-up the world still remembers as a little girl. Tackling everything from what she learned about sex on the set of Melrose Place, to discovering in adolescence that she was no longer “cute” enough for Hollywood, these essays chart her journey from accidental fame to relative (but happy) obscurity. They also illuminate universal struggles, like navigating love and loss, and figuring out who you are and where you belong. Candid, insightful, moving, and hilarious, Where Am I Now? introduces Mara Wilson as a brilliant new chronicler of the experience that is growing up female.From the Trade Paperback edition....

Title : Where Am I Now?: True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780698407015
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 272 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Where Am I Now?: True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame Reviews

  • Wil Wheaton
    2018-11-27 03:26

    Mara Wilson is a delightful storyteller. I felt like she wrote this book just for me, and I cried a lot while I was reading it. But you don't need to be an adrift adult who was a famous kid (like me) to fall in love with her stories and the people in them. Mara is almost 20 years younger than me, but the stories she told about growing up weird, sensitive, and filled with anxiety could have come from my own childhood -- and that doesn't even take into account the whole famous child actor thing.I literally just finished Where Am I Now?, and I have a lot of feelings that I need to process. I suspect I'll be processing them for awhile, because that's what a good book, written by a talented author, will do to a person.

  • Patrick
    2018-11-21 23:40

    I probably picked this book up for different reasons that most people.I'm not particularly a fan of Mara Wilson. Or, to be more accurate, I should say I don't think I'm a typical fan of hers. I never saw Matilda, or a lot of the other movies she acted in back in the day.But I met her at Nerdcon. And I liked her. Then I followed her on Twitter, and she was funny and smart. So when her book came out, I thought, why not give it a try....?And it's good. It's an interesting window into the life of a child star. And into the mind of the person living through it. It's honest and truthful without being painfully confessional, either. (That's something I'm kinda sensitive to, I cringe easy.)I didn't have a lot of emotional investment in Mara Wilson walking into this (as opposed to a lot of people who watched Matilda or Mrs Doubtfire when they were kids.) And her life isn't really very similar to mine. So it seems like this book shouldn't be for me. That I shouldn't have an entry point into it. Or that I shouldn't enjoy it.But the truth is, we like seeing into other people's lives. It's one of the great joys of novels. Of stories in general. It's one of the truths that my Kingkiller books are built around. It's interesting reading the intimate details of another person's life. Especially if that person has lived an interesting life, and if they're willing to speak show you behind the scenes into how they were really thinking at the time. And Mara Wilson does that marvelously well. I really loved the book. And that says a lot, as I don't think I was in any way the target audience for it.Also, it's worth noting that I listened to this as an audio book, read by the author. I think that adds a lot to the experience.Good stuff. Well worth your time.

  • Chelsea Humphrey
    2018-11-19 03:39

    My love of all things Mara Wilson goes back to my childhood in the 90’s. From Mrs. Doubtfire to Matilda and everything in between, you could call me a moderate to severe fan. Growing up, I loved reading (SHOCKER, I know), and watching Matilda‘s leading little lady blossom from the safe haven of her books was a real inspiration to myself. As the years passed and Mara slowly left the spotlight, I often wondered where she went. It wasn’t abnormal; we see loads of child actors who leave the business for one reason or another before they hit adulthood, but I truly thought she was one who would continue on and make a lifetime career out of acting. Thankfully she wrote this book and answered all my nosy questions and then some!This was a whole modge-podge of content that flowed nicely and was organized rather well. At times, there were heaps of dry humor that had me snorting out loud and at others, a quiet intensity that was serious with all the touchy feels you can imagine. It’s really hard to review this book without giving away any of the individual essays, but suffice it to say I enjoyed every single one. I loved the little tid bits from behind the scenes that only the crew was privy to; it made me feel like an insider. I also loved how vulnerable she was with working through her self esteem issues that were beat down by ruthless individuals in Hollywood. Each story, along with the entire length of the book, was just right. Some memoirs seem to contain boring fluff just to get a higher page count; this one was concise and to the point. I spread this read over a few days; I’d just pick it up and read a few stories here and there and it was the perfect book to space out other reads with. I’d highly recommend to all those looking for a memoir with a bit of bite; her story overall is very intriguing and beneficial, even to the non-movie star average joe. The fact that she has never been to jail or rehab blows my mind away! Read it for yourself and see what you think. If you love it, I’ll celebrate with you! If you hate it, let me know so that I can tell you how wrong you are but still love you anyway!*Many thanks to Penguin Books for providing my copy and granting all this fan girl’s Mara Wilson wishes to come true!

  • Nat
    2018-11-26 22:22

    “If you can affect someone when they’re young, you are in their heart forever.”While looking for more memoirs to read and love, I stumbled upon Where Am I Now? and was greatly surprised by how addicting Wilson's writing of her life was. I had no idea what to expect. But I loved it. This memoir goes quite deep into a lot of subjects that always intrigue and leave me wanting for more. I'm mainly talking about Wilson questioning her faith, the waning of her career, feminism, sisterly love, OCD, anxiety, depression, mental health care, grief… a plethora of topics that were all given their respective page time.“Mostly, my stories are about being young and a little out of place. It’s how I’ve felt most of my life: I was born the first girl after three boys, the only Jewish kid in my class, the only girl I knew whose mother had died, the only neurotic in Southern California (or so it seemed), and the only child on film sets full of adults. I was always in someone else’s world, and I always knew it. This, I’ve learned, is a far more common feeling than I once imagined.”Where Am I Now? was both personally relevant and entertaining. Mara Wilson's “neurotic sense of humor” that was right up my alley. I ended up laughing out loud uproariously more than I was anticipating-- something I always welcome with open arms.Just to give you an excerpt, here's one instance (out of many) that Wilson took me by surprise with her humor:“You want to do comedy?” My college boyfriend Sam was incredulous. At some point early in our relationship, it had been established that I was the flighty, funny one, and he was the sensible one, so it was his duty to curb my grandiosity. We were a living screwball comedy.“Why not?” I said, a little insulted. “I think I could. You think I’m funny.” One of the first times I’d gotten Sam’s attention was when our Writing the Essay teacher had asked us to “make the sentence ‘The woman walked down the street’ interesting,” and instead of bogging it down in purple prose, like many of my classmates, I had written, “The woman walked down the street naked.”I picked this book up at exactly the right time for me. It was an important, heartfelt, funny, and enlightening read that had me enraptured till the end. Oh, also the motto in their household has stayed with me, “The only stars are in the sky.”It was a great way to start the year of 2017.“Trying to get some rest while filming the Bruce Bogtrotter cake scene. It took so long to film that instead of putting a start and end time on the call sheet, they just put an infinity symbol.”“Danny, Joel, Jon, me, and baby Anna on the steps of my Mrs. Doubtfire trailer.”“With Anna in 2015. My little sister is now six inches taller than I am.”(The essay about her sister was one of my favorites.)“Hanging with some llamas on a crew member’s farm with Laurie. This is about the only positive male attention I got in middle school.”“One of my first ever film scenes, but I never felt nervous. We already felt like family.”(The essay on Robin Williams and his death had me on the edge of tears.)4/5 stars*Note: I'm an Amazon Affiliate. If you're interested in buying Where Am I Now?, just click on the image below to go through my link. I'll make a small commission!*This review and more can be found on my blog.

  • Laura
    2018-11-24 23:20

    A few months after I found the video of Robin and me, it was taken down, apparently due to copyright infringement. I had to laugh. Most people have embarrassing videos of themselves as children. Few have theirs copyrighted by Twentieth Century Fox. Mara Wilson: the really cute little girl from Mrs. Doubtfire, star of Matilda, and of the Miracle on 34th Street remake. This book was almost called K for Kid because of her role on the hit 90s TV show Melrose Place where she was the only kid on a very adult set. Wherever it is you know Mara Wilson from, you probably know she hasn't been in the public eye in quite some time. What you don't know is: where is she now?Mara has had a blog for close to five years where she shares essays on a variety of topics. She follows that same essay format for her memoir writing an incredibly relatable book with those big Hollywood movies as a child being that one big difference. We explore Mara inside and out with her raw honesty on everything from anxiety, sexuality, OCD, the death of her mother as a young girl, her struggle with the "cute" word, mean girls, puberty, her breakup with Hollywood, insecurities, sibling relationships, finding ones path in life, and everything in between.When a person is gone, all that’s left is a narrative. At some point, that narrative becomes myth. If there’s one thing I regret, it’s letting our mother’s death overshadow her life.I felt Mara on such a deep level when she spoke of her mother going through cancer and her passing. Then I felt it again when she went into the discovery of her extreme anxiety and OCD and how she learned to cope with it. She wants to help people the same wayKissing Doorknobs helped her when she knew she was different and that her mind worked differently often thinking something was wrong with her because of all the worrying, the patterns, the anxiety. She wants people to take mental health care as seriously as they take care of their physical health (as they should). And she wants to help get the information out there for those who need it because you never know when it's the information someone needs to completely change their life around - the way it did for Mara. I couldn't help thinking how much I want to lend this to my little sister who I know will find it comforting with the things they have in common. Not to mention the chapter about her relationship with her younger sister.It was rarely the hellhounds who said anything mean to me; they expressed no real malice toward me other than the occasional eye-roll. They were at the top and had nothing to gain by pushing me around. The ones who scared me, who still scare me, are the girls who see all other girls as competition, who see themselves as the persecuted ones, the ones the pretty and popular girls hate. When you believe you’re persecuted, you will believe anything you do is justified.Such an enlightening view on mean girls. Mara digs into her female friendships from middle school to high school when they auditioned for show choir (the really big one Powerhouse that actually inspired Ryan Murphy to create Glee) and ultimately didn't all make the same choir, so it tore them apart. She managed to fit in with a group of friends for a year until they pulled the mean girl move on Mara as well. If you've ever been bullied or tried to fit in, you'll cringe at how relatable it is.And as we all wanted and I'm sure you're dying to know, there is a sweet letter to the character Matilda that goes into Mara's experience with the character from the moment she read the book, through casting and filming, and even including tidbits from the reunion for the blu-ray release. Some of my favorite things included moments with director Danny DeVito and with the real-life actors from the movie. The character meant the world to both Mara and her mother who passed away during postproduction, so a love letter is a perfect way to explore her experience with the character.She also has a chapter devoted to Robin Williams, a portrait of the man he was as she knew him, and how his death affected her. This reiterates her feelings on mental health being of utmost importance.To be this truthful and honest is to be powerful. Mara Wilson should be proud.

  • Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd)
    2018-11-27 22:31

    Someday I will probably write a long and dramatic review of this book and how much I loved it. For now, I think I’ll just cradle my copy to my chest and cry a tiny bit more.

  • Nenia ✨ Queen of Literary Trash, Protector of Out-of-Print Gems, Khaleesi of Bodice Rippers, Mother of Smut, the Unrepentant, Breaker of Convention ✨ Campbell
    2018-11-30 23:36

    Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest"Pitch perfect" is a phrase that gets thrown around a lot these days, but it is an apt description for WHERE AM I NOW? Matilda is one of my two all-time favorite movies (the other one is Princess Bride, in case you were wondering), and like many others, I often wondered what happened to the talented young actress who went from being in everything to being in nothing. Then I found out she had a Twitter, where I began quietly stalking her posts, and I found to my delight that not only was she talented, she was also funny - and smart. From her Twitter, I found out that she had an upcoming book of essays and well, you know the rest from there. I came, I saw, I lurked - and then I got the book.Celebrity memoirs tend to fall into two categories - they're either (a) gossipy and ghost-written, relying on your guilty pleasure of watching famous people spill the tea to get you through the bad writing (and it does work - very well; I, myself, am not immune) or (b) very polite, very nice thank-you letters to everyone who made them famous, with a few agent-vetted anecdotes to make them seem a bit more approachable, but not too approachable (these are boring, but it's almost impossible to be mad at them, because they're so nice and so polite). Sometimes, though, there's a third category - authentic, relatable, quotable; an existentialist bible that you want to keep on your nightstand and highlight forever.Mara Wilson manages to cover a wide array of topics, detailing her journey into fame and her journey out of it. She talks about her work on Matilda, and how much she loved her role, and lived her role; she talks about her hang-ups about sex; she talks about being a character actor for "adorable quirky child", and the anxiety she felt when she became too old and too plain to land adolescent leading roles (in fact she lost three to Kristen Stewart, which bums me out a little, because Mara would have been amazing in Speak); she talks about her experience with OCD and anxiety, and about being bullied in high school; she talks about first love; she talks about Robin Williams, and how his death affected her; and she talks about what it's like to finally find your people, and feel like you belong.I don't really have words to talk about how this book touched me, and how powerfully I related to some of the chapters. The way Mara talks about the book KISSING DOORKNOBS, and feeling like she was reading about herself - that's kind of how I felt about reading WHERE AM I NOW? (Minus the fame, and various other parts.) This was such an honest, eloquent memoir, and finishing it was like saying goodbye to a friend you haven't seen in a while. It was bittersweet: it was perfect.4.5 stars!

  • Erin ☕ *Proud Book Hoarder*
    2018-11-26 21:38

    I've always been interested in child stars who grow up and out of Hollywood, usually because they have issues finding further work when they get older. I've met Alex Vincent, the little boy Andy from Child's Play, several times over the years at a Florida convention. He has the same issue - he was not able to find work when he grew out of the cute phase, and ultimately moved on to other pursuits. Most of us have seen articles online titled, "Where are they now?"Mara Wilson's memoir tells compelling stories, but the real reason for the five star rating is the poignant, raw honesty. She spends a great deal of time talking about not wanting to be seen as merely cute but as a person playing a real role, not just a car·i·ca·ture ala Shirley Temple. She speaks of being offered roles too young for her when she hit preteen because that was how Hollywood showed her typecast, not feeling that she had that special older beauty to land teenager roles, and of course the dilemma of playing roles for children when you're growing breasts and starting to change over from that awkward middle school stage. This created some self esteem problems throughout life.Beyond this, she discusses general real life issues that all children and people face, but throwing in the sideline of being a childhood star in Hollywood. Dating jerky guys breaking up with you in creative ways, her mother's death, her sister's bond, and her OCD. A huge portion of this book is about her OCD because it shaped her life so fully. I know what being obsessive compulsive means, but after this memoir I take to heart how deep the struggles are when it's severe. The memoir was fascinating and touching. There's some stories of the movies of course, especially a chapter devoted to Matilda. Danny Devito and his wife come across truly sweet in this story. Her comments on Miracle on 34th St. and disappointments on how directors viewed children was eye-opening. One of the final chapters discusses Mrs. Doubtfire and Robin Williams, a chapter devoted to the joy of the man and all the hearts he touched. I realized when reading about him that I have now read three celebrity autobiographies that praise the actor: Christopher Reeve's "Still Me", where he was roommates with Robin in college and they stayed close friends; Fran Drescher's short story about him being apologetic over his excessive sweating during a lovemaking scene; and now this book, where the author said in life he was shy and had trouble meeting peoples eyes when he talked to them.Besides being informative, these stories dish out nuggets of wisdom - mean girls who try to tear others down, dealing with a mother's death, behind the scenes Hollywood drama, awkward dates, trying to find yourself in therapy, and ultimately learning how to grow through severe Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.Mara Wilson's writing style is colorful and easy - I read this one quickly. It was hard to put down and, even when dealing with the heavy stuff, a joy to read. Probably the most honest memoir I've had the pleasure of reading.I received this from Penguin publishing in exchange for an honest review.

  • Iluzija O. Istini
    2018-12-03 19:30

    I didn't really like this book but it was easy to read, didn't leave me in a bad mood, so it earned that extra star.Explaining why I didn't like it will not be as easy as reading it. The thing is that there is no BAD aspect of the book. It was just all over the place. It covered a lot of sides to her life, which made it lose any impact that story could have if standing alone. Writing a book makes a writer make choices, coosing what to leave out is often more difficult than writing a long book. In the end this book feels like she sat down and started writing EVERYTHING she thought was an interesting anegdote from her life. It WOULD be interesting reading about her point of view when filming, her anxietys and girlhood and schooling and private life and family if she picked ONE of those things to write about and gave it an edge, made it memorable. Mostly this feels like reading a normal person's life's short history (I prefer to talk to people about those) that we are supposed to care about just because she was famous once. Sorry, but no.Also, she is funny! The "astma medication" and "faking it" incidents proove it. I am sad to say that this book is not and I do not understand why.I hope to, one day, read some of her fiction, because underneath those two stars, there is potential there. Somewhere.

  • TL
    2018-12-05 19:23

    I feel like anything I could say has already been said by a few of my favorite people here(Patrick Rothfuss , Nenia Campbell so I'll just say this:I really enjoyed reading Mara's stories/essays of growing up and her experiences in her life since she moved on from acting. It felt like I was catching up with an old friend I hadn't seen for awhile. Her "tribute" to Robin Williams was probably my favorite, so moving and beautiful.Hers is the type of storytelling where she just sets out to entertain you and not "in your face." Not many have that natural "knack" for weaving a story together and connecting with an audience but Mara is one of those.That came out better in my head but hopefully you get the idea :).Despite our lives not being the same, she was easy to relate to in a way, and I found it very hard to put this book down at times and go on with my daily routines. (Work wouldn't have understood *pouts* haha).Would recommend, I hope she writes another one soon and maybe one day I'll get to see her perform live... maybe even meet her (girlcandream)

  • Book Riot Community
    2018-11-11 23:16

    As someone growing up, I tend to put my idols on pedestals. Mara Wilson won my heart as Matilda, and as herself on the Nostalgia Critic website where she plays a version of herself that has risen from another dimension to seek revenge. Mara Wilson writes about her life, how she got into acting, why she left the business, and how she entered a new profession: writing. She writes with honest self-effacement and reflection, about her girlhood and teenage years. She wrote Harry Potter fanfiction, and is now writing for Night Vale.— Priya Sridharfrom The Best Books We Read In November 2016:

  • Shelly
    2018-11-20 01:21

    The book pretty much Mara telling stories about her life.Each chapter is a different story from her OCD discovery other mental health problems.Her mothers death and movie too movie.But then it went onto how hard her life is cause she didn't get the parts she wanted, who bullied her and who she slept with. Her chapter on Robin Williams was very compelling but I found the rest of the book a bit of a rant and moan about life.Also felt like she was just on a name drop all the time, trying to draw you in with who she knew and who she worked with.I respected her going into this book and was annoyed with her by the time I was done.

  • Jackie
    2018-11-27 20:42

    I'm a huge fan of celeb memoirs, and I often listen to audiobooks. I am so glad that I READ this one instead. Mara Wilson, if you don't know, is not only the girl who starred in Mrs. Doubtfire and Matilda, but she is also a phenomenally talented writer. Even if you don't remember her movies from your childhood this is still a book to pick up. There's something in it you will identify with. Mara is unflinchingly honest in sharing herself, her struggles and her life. Hilarious, heart-wrenching, this is a new favourite for me in the celeb memoir category.

  • Kales
    2018-12-06 21:34

    This book hit close to home in the best and worst ways. I discovered a deep connection to Mara and related to her story better than any autobiography I have ever read. While she is only four(ish) years older than me, and she was a film child star, a lot of our story is the same. She also experienced the loss of her mother at a young age which was devastating to read about, and I had not but how we see the world and speak to others was spookily similar. I must have cried three/four times during this book and it was insightful and cathartic and honest and I want to meet Mara one day and just say, I loved you book. Thank you for all the stories. I hope she should appreciate it. Her letter to Matilda, her homage to Robin Williams, her friendship with Danny Devito, but even her stories of growing up and adulting and failure were pointed and meaningful. I highly enjoyed this book. Conclusion: To Buy

  • Darth J
    2018-11-15 02:34

    Bookworms, the actress who played Matilda wrote a book!!!!!The Description:Mara Wilson has always felt a little young and a little out of place: as the only child on a film set full of adults, the first daughter in a house full of boys, the sole clinically depressed member of the cheerleading squad, a valley girl in New York and a neurotic in California, and one of the few former child actors who has never been in jail or rehab. Tackling everything from how she first learned about sex on the set of Melrose Place, to losing her mother at a young age, to getting her first kiss (or was it kisses?) on a celebrity canoe trip, to not being “cute” enough to make it in Hollywood, these essays tell the story of one young woman’s journey from accidental fame to relative (but happy) obscurity. But they also illuminate a universal struggle: learning to accept yourself, and figuring out who you are and where you belong. Exquisitely crafted, revelatory, and full of the crack comic timing that has made Mara Wilson a sought-after live storyteller and Twitter star, Where Am I Now? introduces a witty, perceptive, and refreshingly candid new literary voice.It sounds like she's about to dish on everything and you'll bet it will be delicious.If her writing is anything like her twitter, this book is sure to be full of gems like these:

  • Lois R. Gross
    2018-11-24 23:15

    My favorite Mara Wilson moment when she was promoting the made-for-TV movie of "Miracle of 34th St." The theme of the movie, a remake of a Natalie Wood vehicle, was belief in miracles and Santa Claus in particular. The interviewer asked Mara if she believed in Santa, at which point she started giggling, then lisped out, "No, we're Jewish."The world know Mara primarily from three films she made in childhood: Mrs. Doubtfire; Miracle on 34th St. and the beloved (by me, at least) Matilda. She was adorable and feisty and the ultimate child actor.Behind the scenes, however, things weren't going as well. Her mother died during the filming of Matilda from breast cancer. Mara was lucky to have loving surrogates on set in the form of Danny DiVito and Rhea Pearlman who "adopted" her during the roughest times of her mother's illness. Still, however, when the film ended, her pseudo family broke up and she and her father and siblings were left to adjust to a world without her mother on their own.All of this happened as Mara reached an age -- too young for teen roles and too old and developed for child roles -- when Hollywood really no longer had a place for her. Mara tried to fit into the world of normal pre-teens but her long absences from school while she was making movies cast her in the role of outsiders. She did not have a solid group of peers and she was sheltered and slightly immature as she entered high school.Along the way, she discovered that a family tendency to emotional disorders had presented themselves. In addition to depression and anxiety, she had a very pronounced case of OCD, and has gone public with her diagnosis to help others with the problem.As she reached high school, she sought solace in the theater program and in competitive choir programs. Her school's choir was the prototype for the TV show, Glee. In choir, she worked her way up from low ranking choir to the top women's show choir. However, she found that the choir was infested with "mean girls" and her mental problems became worse in response to the social problems.Her understanding parents saw her distress (her father had, by this time, remarried), and sent her to a boarding school that specialized in the arts. In this atmosphere, Mara was able to complete high school and go off to NYU's famous Tisch School of the Arts in the Playwright's Horizon Studio.At NYU, Mara found her "people" and also decided that her calling was less as a performer than as a writer. In addition to on-line blogging and writing and presenting personal stories in the NY area, she continued to write prays and found her way into several showcases in the city.I related to this book mostly because I am the mom of a theater kid who preceded Mara at Playwright's Horizon by about a decade. We also went through the joys and horrors of competitive choirs and drama programs in high school, and everything Mara relates is very, very true.This is the story of a child star who didn't do drugs, didn't get famous for porn on the internet (one photo shopped picture on her head on a nude body drove her to tears), and didn't commit suicide. Instead, she grew up, just slightly out of the public eye, always known as, "Weren't you the kid in Matilda?" Her introduction to sex was a bit jarring for those of us who remember her in childhood, but children do grow up and her path to maturity has not been smooth or easy. She is entitled to her truths.Of course, the chapter on Robin Williams' suicide was particularly moving as she represents him as a painfully shy man who genuinely cared about other people, especially his young co-stars. One might say that she was extremely fortunate to be surrounded by acting adults who were not divas or self-centered egotists. Instead, the stories she tells from her movie sets reinforces the values her parents instilled in her and the kindness that was extended to her at her most vulnerable times.This is a quick read. It made me love the little girl on the screen just a little more and wish the adult that she has become a happier road through her coming years.

  • Gina
    2018-12-07 21:33

    I hate to be so hard on this book because I think it's great that Mara has grown up to find her voice and be confident in her writing. But I was expecting something a little more witty and nuanced (like Mara's Twitter feed) and instead there were chapters about first kisses and getting her first period and high school show choir that I just could not get through. The stuff about show business and how it affected her self image growing up is interesting, but there were just too many recalled AIM chats with middle school boys and not enough reflection or depth. Sorry Mara.

  • Joce (squibblesreads)
    2018-12-10 21:40

    3.5 stars

  • Vanessa
    2018-12-04 03:41

    4.5 stars.This is possibly the best audiobook I have ever listened to, and that is really something because I'm typically not enamoured by audiobooks. Mara Wilson was something of a childhood hero to me, with her portrayal of the Roald Dahl character Matilda - the film and book were childhood staples and still favourites to this day, and I found a kindred spirit and an inspiration in that character. I have also seen every single one of Mara Wilson's films (well, apart from the Thomas the Tank Engine one...), and I loved her as an actress. So of course I had to pick up her memoir, and especially the audiobook as she narrates it herself.Wilson is a fantastic narrator - her voice is both dry, wry, emotional, and perfectly nuanced at all the right moments. I would expect it to be, seeing as it's her own source material she's working with, but her reading came across not only as a captivating performance, but also incredibly natural. I loved listening to her speak. And the book itself I adored. The order of the chapters/sections of this book are not chronological from her childhood through to her adult life - she chops and changes, jumping backwards and forwards in time - so if you don't like it when books do that, this might be an issue for you. However, I was pretty much captivated throughout.Wilson narrates a series of topics, including how she got into acting in the first place, her relationship with her family (particularly her mother and sister), her struggle with mental illness (including OCD and depression), her changing spirituality, and where she is today. Although there were certain parts that captivated me more than others, I found that coming back to the audiobook after taking a few days' break, I was immediately sucked in again. I finished this in two sittings, which is relatively unheard of for me with audiobooks. And there was one particular part of this memoir, the chapter that is based around a letter to the character of Matilda, that had me welling up with the emotion, the nostalgia, and all of the other feelings it produced.If you're a fan of Mara Wilson, of Matilda, of anything she's ever done, pick this up. I guarantee that everyone will get something out of it. It's a fabulous listen.

  • Ashley Brooks
    2018-11-24 22:14

    Interesting but didn't really leave me with any strong feelings. Mara is clearly a good storyteller and the audio book was a great way to experience this. I found the skipping around in time to be a bit disorienting at times.

  • Sunil
    2018-11-29 00:19

    "MARA YOUR BOOK IS REALLY GOOD," I Tweeted to Mara Wilson a couple chapters into Where Am I Now?: True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame. Having finished the book, I stand by that assertion, capslock and all.Where Am I Now? is a memoir in the form of a personal essay collection, and it works incredibly well, playing to Wilson's strengths as a storyteller always looking for the narrative in things. Rather than take us through a chronological journey featuring anecdotes about life as a child star, those awkward teenage years, and the transition into adult writer and performer, she organizes her life—and her self—into thematic journeys featuring the evolution of her views on sex and sexuality, her relationship with her own physical appearance, her OCD, and so on. Each essay has a razor-sharp focus, never straying from its main purpose, even for the sake of a joke. There's not a dud in here.Wilson effectively time travels into her younger selves, giving us their limited, naive perspectives with few apologies (for instance, a reference to "hypothetical bisexuality" at an age when, in fact, such a thing was hypothetical). This allows each individual narrative to proceed fairly linearly, without constant intrusion by Adult Mara and Her Reflecting on Every Little Thing. It shows an admirable amount of restraint and a respect for her own craft; even when I would expect some sort of aside or footnote like in other memoirs, I had to acknowledge that her way flowed so much better. And so we go through portions of Mara Wilson's life via these various thematic threads, and there's a lovely recursion that reminds me of Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic, especially in how so many stories focus on her mother (with one essay slyly devoted to both her mother's death and her little sister, for whom she became a sort of surrogate mother [look at that thematic coherence!]).While I would have liked to see one or two more non-traditional essays like "Elementary Existentialism" (told as a series of scenes at different ages) and "A Letter" (told as a letter to the fictional character Matilda), Wilson's general essay format is comfortably engrossing, with a strong voice anchored by dry humor and honest emotion. And it's that honesty that makes these essays so powerful; I related to so much of what she was saying, and it was a relief to read about someone else, confirming I wasn't alone. I felt like I was connecting with her through the pages, and I think that is the purpose of her stories, to connect with people, to reach others. But I think they are also a way to connect with herself: it's as if each essay is Wilson resolving a part of her own personality, piece by piece, discovering who she was and who she is now.So yeah. You get your behind-the-scenes stories about Mrs. Doubtfire and Matilda. You get your touching Robin Williams tribute. You get your embarrassing childhood photos. But, my God, you get so much more. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll think deep thoughts about feminism and show choir. Where Am I Now? is a wonderful read, each essay so satisfying you won't know whether to sit and savor how good it was...or eagerly go to the next one.

  • Michael
    2018-11-22 20:41

    Mara Wilson has always been a talented child actor. Starring in popular films such as Ms Doubtfire and Matilda, Wilson was able to capture the childhood innocence and warmth as a child. It is no surprise that both movies are my favorites,I have the entire script memorized. I can tell you what is going to happen prior to it occurring, acting out the scenes as they display and laughing when I recite the movie lines. I recall many times when I wondered what happened to Mara? Needless to say, I was very happy to find out that she wrote a book about her life! Now my thoughts towards the book, which I enjoyed tremendously due to the content and pictures!The book was broken down in short and concise chapters about her life. Certain chapters had me laughing so hard such as: discovering what sex was at a young age, fascination with astronomy, and other humorous topics. Reading about how her mother influenced her in such a drastic way was touching, it is no surprising that this book was dedicated to her. Back to the book, I thought this was eye-oepning, the fact that she faced so much rejection and harsh criticism at a young age was shocking! There were many highlights in this book but her letter to the late Robin Williams almost had me in tears! Attached to him as a father, she will able to pour her heart out about where she was, how she felt and how she feels now with such emotion and sincerity.Mara, thank you for this book, whether you return to acting or not;I am glad that you told your story.Highly recommended, one of the best memoirs I read this year!

  • Kirsty
    2018-11-12 22:29

    Mara Wilson's Where Am I Now? was one of my most anticipated Christmas reads. Wilson is just wonderful; I found myself wanting to be best friends with her when I saw her in both Matilda and Miracle on 34th Street as a small child, and was a little sad when I noticed years later that she seemed to have faded from the limelight.Wilson is a witty and original writer, and comes across just as I thought she would. Her narrative voice is engaging, and this renders the book rather difficult to put down from the very beginning. Wilson is candid about her childhood struggles with continued acting and her mother's death from cancer; she is intelligent, warm, and eye-opening in many respects. Her letter to Matilda is insightful and almost tear-inducing. Where Am I Now? is a poignant and meaningful memoir, and I for one cannot wait to see what she turns her hand to next.

  • Alexa
    2018-11-13 00:23

    Full review:

  • Carlyn
    2018-12-04 01:37

    The first half was OK, the second half had me constantly eye-rolling at the privileged nature of Mara's POV. It had a really morose overtone overall, which was appropriate at some points of course, but overdone at others.Most of the interesting and valuable (at least to me) bits were glossed over.It's really hard for me to clarify succinctly what exactly I didn't enjoy about this book, it was all bits and pieces that added up to an overall mild dislike. I almost instantly forgot 90% of the content which is never good.

  • Ellie
    2018-11-18 19:39

    Where Am I Now is Mara Wilson's (star of Matilda) memoir. She talks about what it was like to be a child actor/star and what it was like to be unable to make that transition from child star to adult one. She also shares her personal struggles: her mother's death from breast cancer when she was 8, her mental health issues (OCD and anxiety), her becoming an adult and creating a new career as storyteller and comedienne. Wilson writes well and movingly. Her tribute to Robin Williams (who she met when working on Mrs. Doubtfire) is beautiful and very touching. Her accounts of herself in high school and "show choir" (the basis for the show Glee) are both poignant and, sometimes, hilarious.Sometimes it is a thin line between pain and humor. It's a line Wilson navigates well. Where Am I Now? is a deft performance of the pain, love, and humor of Wilson (perhaps all of ours) life. I strongly recommend it, not just for fans of celebrity bios but to everyone who feels life is both humiliating and hilarious.

  • Ashley
    2018-12-10 03:41

    Mara Wilson's debut memoir is a collection of well-written personal essays and I really enjoyed listening to it, but I didn't love love love it. Some of the essays were incredibly moving and interesting to me, but others had that problem that I have with a lot of memoirs and collections of personal essays where it seems like it was included to fill space. I just find myself reacting like, okay I guess that was pretty good, but why did it need to be written? Hasn't that been written about before?But seriously, like 75% of the stories in here were great, and I'm very excited to see what kinds of things she does in the future. The best essays in here were the ones that only she could have written. The chapters where she comes to term with being a child star (and being the little girl who played Matilda specifically), or the chapter where she talks about her struggles with OCD were the highlights for me, but there's also stuff in here about how she quit Hollywood, the deaths of her mother and Robin Williams, and a chapter she calls "The Matilda Whore Complex" where she deals somewhat with her sexuality*. I really want to see that sexy play she wrote.*Right before this book was published, she came out as bisexual, and if she'd been out while writing this, I think parts of this book would have been written a little differently. Particularly the bit where she says she's straight.This is one of the better celebrity memoirs I've read, because Mara Wilson can actually write. She's a writer. In fact, this is almost not a celebrity memoir, if it didn't rely so heavily on, you know, her being a (former) celebrity. I'd also recommend the audio version. It's always better to hear these things in the author's own voice, especially if they're a performer.

  • Rissa
    2018-11-29 20:13

    She is a wonderful storyteller. And now i need to rewatch Matilda.

  • Nikki
    2018-11-25 20:28

    Of course I loved Matilda — both the book and the film. I was that kind of child. I probably strained my eyes squinting and trying to do Matilda’s ‘Whammy’ on various objects. (Mostly books I wanted to come closer…) So as an adult, perhaps it’s not surprising that I looked up Mara Wilson and ended up following her twitter, despite her complex relationship with Matilda (covered, for example, in one of the chapters in this book, which is a letter to Matilda).I did feel that while it was easy to read, it felt a bit scattered: it’s not chronological, so she discusses the death of her mother, then recounts events which happened before that, leaving me briefly confused. I feel like it lacked an overall structure somehow; without chronology, it needed something else unifying. But it was still compelling, especially reading about her fears and anxieties, the development of her OCD. (Our disorders’ acronyms might only share one letter, but GAD has a fair amount in common with OCD, and I definitely have tendencies of the latter too.) Her relationships with the people around her during filming and after were sweet too — her attachment to Danny DeVito, her reaction to Robin Williams’ death, and her mother’s close involvement with the early years of her career.I read it all in one go, appreciating the frank and honest person I met here. Mara Wilson is fairly clear about portions of her life where she was pretentious, unpleasant, unwontedly angsty, etc. Her tone both accepts it as normal and gently scolds her younger self for that behaviour. I feel like I would quite like to sit down and have a quiet drink and a bun in a bookshop coffee area with her.Originally posted here.

  • Samantha Ania
    2018-12-11 19:13

    8/27/16I loved this book. I read it in two sittings because it's just incredibly readable. Mara Wilson managed to wordify so many things that I have never been able to. At least not to my satisfaction. This book made me cry and it made me think about both myself and just about being a person. Thanks to Goodreads for the ARC and thanks to Mara Wilson, for being wonderful. 8/21/2016More detailed review to follow. Won an ARC thanks to a goodreads giveaway (my first win!). So grateful because it resonated with me on a big way.