Home: A Memoir of My Early Years Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 314 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1401391157
ISBN-10: 140139115X
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Product Details

  • File Size: 917 KB
  • Print Length: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Hachette Books (April 1, 2008)
  • Publication Date: April 1, 2008
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0013TTKWQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #312,047 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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By Ed Uyeshima HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on April 1, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I am convinced that any baby boomer who does not admit to having had a bit of a crush on Julie Andrews is lying. I recall even as a toddler how I begged my parents to let me see Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music multiple times only to enjoy those movies again in sing-along versions forty years later. The crispness of her vocal delivery and the angularity of her wholesome appeal just seemed right before the counter-cultural revolution took over with the escalation of the Vietnam War. However, she does not get to that career pinnacle in her memoir, as her story stops just as she flew to Los Angeles in 1963 to film Mary Poppins. It's a major credit to Andrews that she makes intriguing those early years prior to her international success with such perceptive candor and gentle humor. Perhaps because of her long-standing success as a children's book author, she displays a great deal of dexterity as a writer.

Andrews' childhood memories are full of self-effacing observations about a most unenviable home life. Belying her image of elegant breeding, she was raised in poverty by an alcoholic mother and a lecherous stepfather during the dwindling days of vaudeville in England. Already a part of her parents' music hall act by age nine, Andrews found she had an acrobatic soprano voice that so astounded the press that she performed for the Queen and became a nightly sensation at the London Palladium.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Coming some 60 years after her first professional recording, this audiobook is sort of the pinnacle of Ms. Andrews' recording career. The life of Julie Andrews, as written by Julie Andrews, and read to you, as if she were personally telling you the story of her life, by Julie Andrews.

Ms. Andrews' life and career have both been well-documented by biographers, but everything takes on new meaning and becomes personal when told by Ms. Andrews herself. And, of course, there are anecdotes and details that only Ms. Andrews herself can share with her audience, so there is much for even the most devoted fan to learn from this book. Here, she tells the story of her life from her earliest childhood to her career as a child star, from her journey to Broadway and television through to being cast by Walt Disney in MARY POPPINS.

The audiobook on CD is 13 hours long, spread over 11 CDs. Each disc contains seven to ten tracks; some chapters are one track long, and others are two to three tracks long. The production is straightforward and what you would expect of an audiobook -- read clearly, recorded well. Of course, I'd be happy hearing Ms. Andrews read the dictionary to me, but there is something magical and mesmerizing about her voice here, describing her own life.

At the end of the audiobook, Ms. Andrews says, "Thank you for listening." This is the only detail she has wrong -- we, the audience, should be saying to her, "Thank you for telling." I only hope we don't have to wait too long for the next part of the Julie Andrews story...
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I came of age listening to the original cast recordings of MY FAIR LADY and CAMELOT, and my first glimpse of Julie Andrews was in snippets from the latter show on ED SULLIVAN. I fell in love with her crystalline soprano and crisp diction and have always followed her career. When I heard she was writing a memoir of her early years, I couldn't wait to read it. After the book arrived from Amazon, I devoured it in two sittings, staying up late to finish. In beautiful, unflinching prose she fills in the gaps I've wondered about over the years, giving insights into her evolution from a young English girl with a big voice to the coloratura toast of Broadway--a transition she made with grit and talent. Ms. Andrews depicts a childhood that forced her to leave school at 14 and support her family with her singing, but there's not a trace of self-pity. She also shares details about her vocal training with Lilian Stiles-Allen. If you're a Julie Andrews fan, you'll want to buy this book and immerse yourself in her memories. She's a "fair lady," all right, and still the queen of the golden age of musicals. Brava, Ms. Andrews, and many thanks! -- from Susan Dormady Eisenberg, contributing writer to Classical Singer Magazine & author of the novel, THE VOICE I JUST HEARD.
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Format: Hardcover
When it was announced that Home, Julie Andrews' much anticipated memoir would only cover until she began Mary Poppins, I was initially disappointed. But as I began delving into Home, I realized the detail she was able to afford her early years by doing so allowed a story to unravel that was absolutely absorbing; something that likely been comprised had Home chronicled her entire illustrious career. I was very ignorant of Julie's early career, thinking it essentially began with My Fair Lady on Broadway. What I didn't know was the dark lonely childhood lived in poverty during the war. Unlike Elizabeth Taylor, Julia (as she was originally named) did not have the luxury of seeking refuge elsewhere, and was forced to remain in a very bleak and dark London; many nights spent huddled in one of the city's Underground stations with her mother and her new stepfather who she despised. Weekends spent with her father in the countryside provided fleeting moments of happiness for the young girl.

As she grew a little older, her stepfather discovered that she had an extremely powerful singing voice, and she was quickly enrolled in lessons. In no time she was shoved onstage to entertain crowds alongside her parents in dusty old music halls across England. Julie, known as the "pigtail prodigy," became the centerpiece of the act, much to the frustration of her jealous stepfather, who was an alcoholic. In Home, Julie intimately remembers her early days spent touring around England during the dying days of vaudeville. As interest in the family act begins to dissipate, Julie appears in Christmas pantomimes and on the radio, and catches the eye of producers who are mounting the Broadway production of The Boy Friend, a recent musical hit there on the West End.
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