A Book Written by a Celebrity - Take Two.
Scrappy Little Nobody
By Anna Kendrick
In my first "A Book Written by a Celebrity" post I thought I would be okay and get this post out the next week. Big fail on my part, but I did have a family emergency come up, so I do at least have a small excuse.
I also commented in that post how I was super excited about reading Carrie Fisher's The Princess Diarist as well as this week's post, Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick, and while it did take me a little longer to read, I must say that was on no part Anna's fault (Yes, we're on first name basis, or at least after reading her book I feel this way, and I hope she agrees!) Anna did not disappoint in this funny, scrappy and heartwarming (tell your mother, Anna! I found parts of it heartwarming!) memoir of her trials of making it to stardom but still living like a broke high-school dropout.
Born and raised in Portland, Maine, Anna Kendrick made her Broadway debut at the age of twelve in her Tony-nominated performance for the musical High Society. Since her Academy Award-nominated role as Natalie Keener in Up in the Air, she has made numerous theatrical appearances, including starring roles in Into the Woods, the Twilight saga, and the Pitch Perfect film franchise. In 2013, she achieved musical success with the triple-platinum hit song "Cups (When I'm Gone)," featured in Pitch Perfect. She lives in Los Angeles. (Touchstone)
Even before she made a name for herself on the silver screen starring in films like Pitch Perfect, Up in the Air, Twilight, and Into the Woods, Anna Kendrick was unusually small, weird, and "10 percent defiant."
A the ripe age of thirteen, she had already resolved to "keep the crazy inside my head where it belonged. Forever. But here's the thing about crazy: It. Wants. Out." In Scrappy Little Nobody, she invites readers inside her brain, sharing extraordinary and charmingly ordinary stories with candor and winningly wry observations.
With her razor-sharp wit, Anna recounts the absurdities she's experienced on her way to and from the heart of pop culture as only she can - from her unusual path to the performing arts (Vanilla Ice and baggy neon pants may have played a role), to her double life as a middle-school student who also starred on Broadway, to her initial "dating experiments" (including liking boys who didn't like her back), to reviewing a binder full of butt doubles, to her struggle to live like an adult woman instead of a perpetual "man-child."
Enter Anna's world and follow her rise from "scrappy little nobody" to someone who dazzles on the stage, the screen, and now the page - with an electric, singular voice, at once familiar and surprising, sharp and sweet, funny and serious (well, not that serious). (Touchstone)
The Review & Wrap-Up:
Not only am I on first name basis with Anna, but we're also BFFs. True story.
... Or at least I wish! I have had a very strong attraction to Anna Kendrick since I first saw her in Twilight. Jack and I both loved her as "Jess" and thought she played the part of perfectly. When she talked about her time working on Twilight and says that she didn't have the fandom like most of her other cast-mates, I just couldn't wrap my head around it. She was by far my favorite character and actor in the movies. I have read the Twilight books and am a huge Harry Potter fan, both the books and the movies, so I had a connection with Rob Pattinson already. But she states she didn't have the paparazzi all over her like the others did. Had I known at the time, I would have stalked her to make her feel better about the situation.
... I believe I may have an unhealthy lover for her....
So, with my love for her out in the open, let me now tell you how much I loved her book!
Scrappy Little Nobody is funny, scrappy, heartwarming and insightful. I think that most people before reading it would question whether or not she, being so young, would have enough to fill a 200+ page book with. (She's 32, by the way, not 12 like she believes most people thinks she is.) And the answer to this question is yes, she does.
Scrappy Little Nobody is about her strange life of growing up as a Broadway up-and-comer; her struggles of going to LA by herself, and trying to make it as an actress without the help of a local support system (yes, her family supported her, but they were all the way back in Maine); and all the other quirky, crazy antics that make her who she is.
Most people will find something to relate to her with while reading this memoir. Some - myself - maybe more than others. But the situations and stories she tells are, for the most part, completely normal, everyday-people stories with a little dash of Anna's crazy added in.
Scrappy Little Nobody made my love for Anna bloom even more, if that is even possible. I'm sure that if we were to ever meet - and we didn't live an entire country away from each other - we really could be best friends. I realize how creepy this sounds, but I'm sure if Anna ever reads this post, she'll totally get it. If not, then maybe it's really not meant to be. But I do have to say this:
Anna, As courtesy, if I ever come across you walking down the street, I'm going to act like the biggest fangirl of JTT ever (yes, I totally picked up on that drawing on the "Boys" page), and scream like nobody's business until you notice me and take a photo with me. I will promptly follow our photo session by asking you to be my BFF. Also, if you're ever in central-West Virginia, please hit me up! :)
Go pick up a copy of Scrappy Little Nobody and get ready to make Anna you're new BFF, too. She's totally going to make you laugh and want to hang out with her all the time!
From one bookaholic to another, I hope I’ve helped you find your next fix.
Love this book? Check out another book I've reviewed by another celebrity I wish I were friends with: Lauren Graham's Talking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls, and Everything in Between.
In this collection of personal essays, the beloved star of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood reveals stories about life, love, and working as a woman in Hollywood—along with behind-the-scenes dispatches from the set of the new Gilmore Girls, where she plays the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore once again.
In Talking as Fast as I Can, Lauren Graham hits pause for a moment and looks back on her life, sharing laugh-out-loud stories about growing up, starting out as an actress, and, years later, sitting in her trailer on the Parenthood set and asking herself, “Did you, um, make it?” She opens up about the challenges of being single in Hollywood (“Strangers were worried about me; that’s how long I was single!”), the time she was asked to audition her butt for a role, and her experience being a judge on Project Runway (“It’s like I had a fashion-induced blackout”).
In “What It Was Like, Part One,” Graham sits down for an epic Gilmore Girls marathon and reflects on being cast as the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore. The essay “What It Was Like, Part Two” reveals how it felt to pick up the role again nine years later, and what doing so has meant to her.
Some more things you will learn about Lauren: She once tried to go vegan just to bond with Ellen DeGeneres, she’s aware that meeting guys at awards shows has its pitfalls (“If you’re meeting someone for the first time after three hours of hair, makeup, and styling, you’ve already set the bar too high”), and she’s a card-carrying REI shopper (“My bungee cords now earn points!”).
Including photos and excerpts from the diary Graham kept during the filming of the recent Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, this book is like a cozy night in, catching up with your best friend, laughing and swapping stories, and—of course—talking as fast as you can. (Goodreads)
Pair it with: Stoli and Soda with a lime, because the lime makes it fancy, right?!
Stoli Vodka: 2 parts
Club Soda: 4 parts
Fresh Lime: Garnish
Start a conversation: What celebrity do you feel you connect with? Would you act like a screaming tween upon meeting them or try to act cool like they're no big deal?
Have a book you’d like to suggest or one you’d like me to review? Please feel free to leave your comments down below.