Where Am I Now? - Mara Wilson | ARC Review

Pages: 259, ARC Paperback
Publication date: September 13, 2016

Publisher: Penguin Random House Canada
How I got the copy: Received a copy from the publisher
Rating: 3/5 Stars


For readers of Lena Dunham, Allie Brosh and Roxane Gay, this funny, poignant, daringly honest collection of personal essays introduces Mara Wilson—the former child actress best known for her starring roles in Matilda and Mrs. Doubtfire—as a brilliant new chronicler of the experience that is growing up young and female.

 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. 

This book is for anyone interested in knowing what happened to childhood star, Mara Wilson, and is interested in knowing about her time as a childhood star. Where Am I Now? includes information about her past, before acting, during her acting career, the struggle of being a childhood star and what she's been up too after "fame". 

I enjoyed this book. I enjoy reading memoirs in general, so I knew I would enjoy it. It covers so much about Mara Wilson. It dives deep in letting the reader know how her acting career was hard and in which ways she struggled, especially, when she was in her preteen years. It broke my heart reading how she struggled while on set of Matilda (I love this movie and to this day can watch it from start to finish) because her mother was very sick. Also, with how Mara struggled with her mother's death as a child and how she felt alone.

There's more to this book than just Mara's childhood acting career, readers will also read about her family, growing up, first loves, a bit of Danny DeVito, there's a whole chapter about Robert Williams and more!

As easy and enjoyable this book was to read, I found the way the book was laid out was a bit strange. Throughout the entire book the reader jumps from past to present day multiple times. I think I would have appreciated if this book was in chronological order. I found jumping back and forth throughout the entire book a bit confusing to me at times and I just wanted the story to be in order.

Then there was the name dropping. I didn't mind it, I enjoyed reading about who she was competing with for roles, who she knew, who she was friends with but when it came to the juicy information, her lips were sealed (literally). No fun at all, this is supposed to be a memoir and after so much name dropping, I feel as Mara didn't completely commit when she covered her love interests. After all the name dropping for about half the book, Mara stops when things get to real.

Anyways, I recommend this to all Mara Wilson fans. If you grew up watching her movies and if you're curious (I don't know why you wouldn't be, if you aren't) about her experience being a childhood star and where she is now to pick this up.


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