A Memoir of My Early Years

Large Print - 2008
Average Rating:
Rate this:
We all know Julie Andrews from The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins, but few people know the story of her road to fame. In this memoir, Julie Andrews&   takes us from her early years with an aspiring Vaudeville mom and a loving dad, to her parents divorce and mother 's remarriage to a difficult stepfather. Julie has kept diaries her whole life, so every anecdote in her memoir is very fresh and immediate.&   There are incredible scenes of the London Blitz during WWII; at age nine, she was the only kid on the street who was able to identify the sound of the German bombers, and it was her job to warn the whole neighborhood when they were coming. Julie 's mother was in musical theater with her stepdad, and Julie spent her entire youth traveling to&   venues all over the country. She performed for the Queen at age 12, and by the time she was a young teen, she was supporting her entire family because her stepdad was an alcoholic.&   A few of her roles were more glamorous during this time, but she was always the performer with holes in her socks because she never had any money. At age 19, Julie tried out for the role in The Boyfriend, which was opening on Broadway in New York. She got the part and flew here, was a smash in the play, and then starred in My Fair Lady with Rex Harrison. The book carries through her role in Camelot with Richard Burton, at age 20, after which her daughter was born. There are great anecdotes about the actors and actresses of her day; her voice is humorous, warm, and lively; and this is just an incredible memoir. There are tons of never-before-seen photos, too.
Publisher: Waterville, Me. : Thorndike Press, 2008
ISBN: 9781410405883
Branch Call Number: B ANDREWS
Characteristics: 572 pages (large print) ;,23 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Mar 05, 2020

I'm pretty sure this is one of the first memoirs I ever read as a teen, and it was a GREAT place to start. As is often the case with memoirs and biographies — in particular those of performers — I found the early childhood stuff a bit tiresome, though Andrews writes it with charm and compassion. Her childhood and teen years were incredibly difficult, both as a result of growing up during World War II and as a result of the adults in her life frequently making decisions about their lives (and thus hers) that didn’t exactly lead to a stable childhood. I wrote more specifically on Twitter about that, and just an FYI this book includes brief depictions of domestic abuse, including sexual abuse. Andrews is remarkably thoughtful and generous towards her parents, while not shying away from the ways she was hurt by their actions and attitudes.

I enjoyed this book most when she was writing about the ins and outs of her work, the ways she’s trained her voice and learned how to create a character and her delight in performance. I’m extra excited to see that play out in the sections in Home Work about Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music and rewatch both of those movies afterwards with that information in mind!!!

Feb 27, 2020

Who knew Julie Andrews had such a difficult start? She worked for each and every job she got, and even supported her family from a very young age. She did not have it all peaches and cream, but her family recognized her amazing voice at a very young age and capitalized on it. Did they use her? Yes, absolutely. Did she rise above it? Yes, absolutely. Her early years certainly molded her into the woman she became,

Jan 30, 2018

Andrews recounts both her personal and professional life up until her time in The Sound of Music.

Dec 02, 2017

Interesting memoir. Pretty much what you would expect from Julie Andrews - refined, polished, gracious. I was impressed with how very hard she worked to become the star that she did. Talented, without a doubt - but no overnight success by any means!! I also found surprising her sad, dysfunctional childhood. Particularly in an era when it was all supposed to be "Ozzie & Harriet". Telling the truth of her childhood could not have been easy for her!

May 06, 2016

Julie Andrews

Nov 01, 2012

I have read the book and I had liked
it this is based on a true story this is
the book for everyone to read

May 06, 2011

The sweetheart of Broadway and the cinema provides wonderful insight into the early life and career of this great lady. I look forward to the next book with great anticipation.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Related Authors


Subject Headings


Find it at my library

To Top