My Mother Was Nuts

My Mother Was Nuts

A Memoir

Book - 2012
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Most people know Penny Marshall as the director of Big and A League of Their Own . What they don't know is her trailblazing career was a happy accident. In this funny and intimate memoir, Penny takes us from the stage of The Jackie Gleason Show in 1955 to Hollywood's star-studded sets, offering up some hilarious detours along the way.

My Mother Was Nuts is an intimate backstage pass to Penny's personal life, her breakout role on The Odd Couple , her exploits with Cindy Williams and John Belushi, and her travels across Europe with Art Garfunkel on the back of a motorcycle. We see Penny get married. And divorced. And married again (the second time to Rob Reiner). We meet a young Carrie Fisher, whose close friendship with Penny has spanned decades. And we see Penny at work with Tom Hanks, Mark Wahlberg, Whoopi Goldberg, Robert De Niro, and Whitney Houston.

Throughout it all, from her childhood spent tap dancing in the Bronx, to her rise as the star of Laverne & Shirley , Penny lived by simple rules: "try hard, help your friends, don't get too crazy, and have fun." With humor and heart, My Mother Was Nuts reveals there's no one else quite like Penny Marshall.

Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, c2012.
ISBN: 9780547892627
Characteristics: xvi, 326 p. :,ill., ports. ;,24 cm.


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Mar 07, 2019

** spoiler alert ** When I heard that Penny Marshall had died, I was shocked and a little sad. Even though she wasn't one of my favorite actresses , she directed two of my all time favorite movies, Big and A League of Their Own. And when I saw that she had written an autobiography, I was curious.
Unlike most autobiographies this one compelled me from the beginning when she talked about her childhood and her family. This isn't a spoiler but her mother really was nuts. However not in the way you'd expect.
The book continued to be interesting until about the time that Laverne and Shirley ended and then it became annoying. I lost count of how many times she said " I don't know. " and even more annoying was the way she referred to other celebrities by nicknames like Bobby DiNero, Artie Garfunkel and Danny Ackroyd but these were her memories so I won't fault her for that! However I cannot forgive her almost obsessive use of the "F" word which I'm sorry to say this now that she's gone but that combined with the drug use, really lowered my opinion of her.
The sections on her movies were a little disappointing but I did learn some things about a couple of my favorite movies.
All in all an interesting read but perhaps I would have enjoyed it more had I been a bigger fan. And sadly, I'm not.

drofdeb Jan 02, 2014

loved every awesome biography...a must read for every 1970's sitcom fan. Penny Marshall is a true talent and one funny crazy lady with LOTS of friends. Wish there was a bit more of the Laverne and Shirley days but oh well....!!!

Nov 18, 2013

I really enjoyed this book! Inspired me to start writing my own autobigraphy-eventually!

Aug 10, 2013

If you've ever listened to Penny Marshall speak, it will come as no surprise to you that that is exactly how she writes. For me, her voice came right off those pages as if she were sitting right next to me. For the most part, I laughed. There were some sad, crazy times in her life as well, but then, who among us hasn't gone through crap. I recommend this book.

Nov 23, 2012

Just OK. This book is pretty light which seems to echo Marshall's personality. She's likable but not very deep or insightful. She appears to hobnob with everyone who is anyone in Hollywood, who knew? The last half of the book drags as she spends excruciating detail on the films she directed which let's face it, are formulaic Hollywood crap.

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