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Comment: The item shows wear from consistent use, but it remains in good condition and works perfectly. All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. May include "From the library of" labels.
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There Was a Little Girl: The Real Story of My Mother and Me Hardcover – November 18, 2014

4 out of 5 stars 610 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, November 2014: In her previous memoir, Down Came the Rain, Brooke Shields described her post-partum depression so frankly and powerfully, she probably helped a lot of women, even if she did annoy fellow actor Tom Cruise, who disputed Shields’ contention that anti-depressants are helpful. The only person she might have upset with her new memoir, however, is her late mother, Teri Shields, who, on almost every page, is outed as a serious alcoholic and “a tough broad who could fight.” (Ok, onetime boyfriend, Liam Neesen doesn’t come off so great, and ex-husband Andre Agassi isn’t going to be thrilled, either—but at least Brooke was nicer to the latter than he was to her in his memoir, Open.) Still, Shields-the-daughter also praises the complicated working-class beauty she both adored and abhorred—sections about Teri fighting for her minor daughter’s rights while on the New Orleans set of “Pretty Baby” live next to suggestions that Teri might have chosen the hotel the family stayed in because of its proximity to a favorite bar. As an adult, Brooke (who as a child called legendary fashion photographer Francesco Scavullo “uncle Frankie”) rotated between estrangement from and reconciliation with her mother; today, she thinks plenty about their relationship as she and writer/producer Chris Henchy raise their two daughters. In other words, what could have been a next-generation Mommy Dearest becomes something else: a (sometimes painfully) frank account of growing up in a seriously privileged but painfully dysfunctional family and how one might possibly break such a cycle. –Sara Nelson

Review

Praise for There Was a Little Girl

“Shields writes with considerable reflection; she's done the hard work of making sense of the contradictions in her mother, and now we get the benefit of her sharing what she's learned.” -- Kirkus Reviews

"[A] well-crafted and insightful read from beginning to end...a thoughtful poignant and provoking story about a girl and her mom...a remarkably clear-eyed examination." -- Associated Press

"This story of Brooke's career as a model and actress unfolds from the perspective of an adult child of an alcoholic. Her voice in this memoir is unguarded and raw and deals head-on with the damage alcohol causes in intimate relationships. For a celebrity of her stature to write so honestly and intelligently about emotion wounds is a refreshing change. The book will appeal not only to Shields fans, but also to readers who seek out memoirs about surviving dysfunctional families. Brooke Shields is still our sister, just more real and imperfect." -- BookPage

"A raw, honest tale of a mother and daughter that will appeal not only to celebrity watchers but mothers and daughters." -- Library Journal
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton; First Edition edition (November 18, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525954848
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525954842
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.4 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (610 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #84,529 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I never expected to feel such pity -- indeed, ANY sympathy -- for a beautiful celebrity with plenty of money, but all I can say is, where were the people who were supposed to be around protecting this little girl? No doubt there would have been a dreadful custody battle if Brooke Shields' wealthy dad had tried to get her away from her mom, for good, and also, the mother and child were so symbiotically entwined it would have been a horrible emotional trauma for both, but to what end? Yes, the child had a successful and controversial career as a cause celebre, her preternaturally pretty face plastered all over every magazine I picked up when I was in high school and she was scarcely of junior high school age, but for all the glamour and perks it won her (surely plenty of free makeup and clothes, exciting travel and unusual experiences for a kid, and plenty of positive attention from the people at the modeling studios and movie sets where she worked), Brooke still comes across as a sad, pitiful, even sometimes a lonely little girl, much too needy of her Mommy (who with determination saw to that!), struggling to make friends with the aloof little rich girls in the New York and New Jersey private schools who enviously kept their distance at first. This persona, this emotionally needy infant stunted by her mom's dominance was continued throughout college, and that's really sad-- imagine having to go home every weekend and have Mom come to campus every week because one is so scared and lonely at a campus barely an hour away from home, at the age of eighteen and nineteen. Not to mention having her Mom's emotional ghost hovering over every situation with a boyfriend, at an age where girls are finding their independence and exploring their first adult relationships.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this autobiography very much. I always wondered what the relationship between Brooke Shields and her mother was like. There were so many rumors about Teri being the ultimate stage mom and being unwilling to let Brooke make any decisions for herself. Not only are Teri's own background and life story revealed, but Brooke tells of her own less-than idyllic childhood. Teri's alcoholism affected the relationship as well as her self-esteem issues. Brooke ultimately forgave her mother after a period of estrangement and was by her mother's side when she died. Sad but some humorous moments.Many old photos as well as some of Brooke's family now.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I had been looking so forward to reading this. I can't quite put my finger on why, but the feel of this memoir is so different than the one prior. She appears honest enough in the situations she recalls, but still seems to be holding a lot back in regard to her relationship with her mom.
I didn't expect, nor want to read a scathing "tell all"~ Something is just void.

Maybe she is guarded to preserve her mother's memory?~Maybe she is guarded to avoid hurting someone else in her family?~Maybe even self preservation.
There is nothing obviously wrong with the book other than a minor typo or two. It's just not as authentic as when she poured out her soul when writing about her struggle with Post Partum Depression. Maybe she set the bar really high with that one.

If you grew up in the era of Brooke Shields and her Calvins, you'll most likely enjoy this book. Most of us heard rumors of the relationship between Brooke and her mother, so nothing is really a shocking surprise in this story. I guess her objective is for people to sympathize with her mother more?
Just guessing here.
I don't think anyone at this point anyone is thinking about her mother in a harsh view almost 40 years later. Is defending or explaining her mother necessary today. This book would have been major a couple decades ago, but the relevancy of it today is a little hard to understand. Perhaps, she didn't want to write it while her mother was still alive. Then again, there is nothing really controversial in it.

I don't this the author's intention was in any way to make herself seem more relatable, but it turned out that way. I've always liked her, but this does make her appear more down to earth.
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I just finished this book. I enjoyed it as I have alway thought a lot of Brooke. However, her relationship with her mother was sad. I could relate because my own mother was an alcoholic and I felt powerless to have any say in my own life when I was young. I left for college and never went back. I don't think I would have survived if I hadn't. It is too bad she couldn't cut the ties sooner. It is clear at the end of the book that she still has issues even after her mom's death. I hope she is getting some ongoing counseling. An alcoholic parent can destroy your life if you let them. Alcohol is #1 in their lives and other relationships are secondary. I loved my Mom but, I didn't like her much of the time. I considered her a negative role model and raised my own daughters differently. They are people to be proud of. It did take some counseling for me to come to grips with my relationship with my mom. It helped enormously! More power to you Brooke!
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