Where Am I Now? True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame
by Mara Wilson
Penguin Books, 2016. 272 pgs. Biography
You might not know Mara Wilson’s name, but you’d probably recognize her face. She spent her early years as one of the most popular child stars of the 1990s, with credits including Matilda, Mrs. Doubtfire, and Miracle on 34th Street. For years, she was everywhere, and then suddenly she disappeared from Hollywood. As the title suggests, Where Am I Now? describes Wilson’s difficult transition away from stardom and into adulthood. It also includes wonderful behind-the-scenes information about her time on movie sets and her relationships with costars.
If you enjoy celebrity memoirs, Where Am I Now? is worth the read. Wilson is a clever writer (as evidenced by her Twitter account), and, in general, her life has been an interesting one. She included a few high school stories that I found uninteresting and a little off-putting because they seemed like typical, petty teenage experiences. She writes beautifully, however, about her mother’s death during the production of Matilda, her own experiences with OCD and anxiety, and the pain she felt when Hollywood rejected her in adolescence based on appearance. Overall, this funny, candid, and poignant book is an enjoyable read that can be finished in just a few hours.