I’m Glad My Mom Died

S. & S. Aug. 2022. 320p. ISBN 9781982185824. $27.99. MEMOIR
Former child actor McCurdy’s memoir of growing up in Hollywood is divided into two parts: “Before” her mother’s death and “After.” In “Before,” McCurdy’s overbearing mother works to achieve stardom for her young daughter. Wanting to please her mother, McCurdy endures endless auditions, eyelash tinting, daily weigh-ins, guilt trips, and personal showers from her mother well into her teens. Her mother makes Mommy Dearest look like Mother of the Year. Though McCurdy achieved success (Nickelodeon’s TV series iCarly and the spin-off Sam and Cat with Ariana Grande), it was not without a price. In “After,” she recounts coping with bulimia, addiction, and bad relationships. Once she achieved the fame her mother sought for her, she writes, “I realize that she’s happy and I’m not. Her happiness came at the cost of mine. I feel robbed and exploited.” But McCurdy eventually sought help and found herself. While this is a grim tale of a lost childhood, not unlike stories of other child actors, McCurdy is a good writer and her compelling story is not without dark humor.
VERDICT For those who enjoy candid celebrity memoirs and stories about overcoming the odds.
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