- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: It Books; First Edition edition (June 15, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0061962147
- ISBN-13: 978-0061962141
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 762 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #249,010 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Confessions of a Prairie Bitch: How I Survived Nellie Oleson and Learned to Love Being Hated Hardcover – June 15, 2010
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“Alison Arngrim is a talented actress and an author who has patched together a meaningful life and created a book whose pages…fly.” (Phyllis Diller)
“As a city bitch myself, I loved this book! It’s nice to see how the other half lives. Alison Arngrim’s memoir is a hilarious, moving, and dishy Hollywood tale.” (Margaret Cho)
“Alison Arngrim is a fine actress and a true comedienne. She has always been the kind of ‘Bitch’ who tells it like it is. So, readers beware, you are in for an eye-full of reality told with a remarkable sense of humor.” (Carol Channing)
“Whoa, Nellie! “Confessions of a Prairie Bitch” is a book that you will keep stored under a haystack in the barn, to dip into whenever you need a shot of something that will keep you down on the farm.” (Bruce Vilanch)
“Courage, moxie, chutzpah , cajones. Alison Arngrim has them all in spades. In “Confessions of a Prairie Bitch,” she bares her soul and manages to share her story with grace, dignity, and her inimitable humor. Simply put, I love this book and I love her. ” (Melissa Gilbert)
From the Back Cover
For seven years, Alison Arngrim played a wretched, scheming, selfish, lying, manipulative brat on one of TV history's most beloved series. Though millions of Little House on the Prairie viewers hated Nellie Oleson and her evil antics, Arngrim grew to love her character—and the freedom and confidence Nellie inspired in her.
In Confessions of a Prairie Bitch, Arngrim describes growing up in Hollywood with her eccentric parents: Thor Arngrim, a talent manager to Liberace and others, whose appetite for publicity was insatiable, and legendary voice actress Norma MacMillan, who played both Gumby and Casper the Friendly Ghost. She recalls her most cherished and often wickedly funny moments behind the scenes of Little House: Michael Landon's "unsaintly" habit of not wearing underwear; how she and Melissa Gilbert (who played her TV nemesis, Laura Ingalls) became best friends and accidentally got drunk on rum cakes at 7-Eleven; and the only time she and Katherine MacGregor (who played Nellie's mom) appeared in public in costume, provoking a posse of elementary schoolgirls to attack them.
Arngrim relays all this and more with biting wit, but she also bravely recounts her life's challenges: her struggle to survive a history of traumatic abuse, depression, and paralyzing shyness; the "secret" her father kept from her for twenty years; and the devastating loss of her "Little House husband" and best friend, Steve Tracy, to AIDS, which inspired her second career in social and political activism. Arngrim describes how Nellie Oleson taught her to be bold, daring, and determined, and how she is eternally grateful to have had the biggest little bitch on the prairie to show her the way.
Top customer reviews
I knew more about Melissa Gilbert so I was curious to hear what Allison had to say. Wow, I could not put this book down.
I was saddened to read about the abuse she endured as a young child- and was fascinated to read about her parents and about their fame as well. She has had an adventurous, yet tragic life while continuing to keep her sense of humor. Frankly, she sounds like an amazing women! Loved her tales of life on the set of Little House. I was surprised to know about Mary being such a snob but I guess it was her loss.
I especially enjoyed her re-telling the making of my favorite episode- when Laura pushes her down the hill in her wheel chair! Who can forget Nellie's rage at the end of that episode? When she tears up everything and then throws a toy horse- I truly thought she was the most evil person I had ever seen!
What a wonderful time for her and it's nice to see the cast continues to be close and has get-togethers. Any Little House fan will really enjoy this book! And the title is hilarious!
I also wanted to know if there was any truth, no matter how little, to the rumors I'd hear about MSA; how distant and snotty she was during the show and even later. Alison didn't seem to bash her, but she did mention how she didn't seem very responsive to her attempts at extending the olive branch. This surprises me as Mary was such a likable character, I assumed the actress was at least a little like this. Not saying I'm definite she's horrible now, but after hearing so much about it and reading this book, I am starting to think maybe MSA isn't very nice... at least, to the cast for whatever reason.
The book went into Alison's life, something I'd wondered about before. I hadn't known she was raped or anything, so it was surprising. I appreciate that she was even able to tell it because I'm not so sure I would have been able to. She seemed to be a little detached from it, but I assume that's because it was horrible and it's probably not something she's worked through completely (but then again, could you ever really put that behind you?).
All in all, it was a fantastic book: informative about the show, the cast, and herself. I'd recommend this book to any LHOTP fan. It will be going into my 'keep it' library of books because I know I'll enjoy going back every now and then and revisiting it. To me, it seemed like she did survive it and survived it well.