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The book that made me change my mind about Julie Andrews

Updated on June 29, 2015

I could never quite like Julie Andrews.

Of course, it was the roles she played in her early movies; the I-am-wonderful-and-know-best Mary Poppins and the butter-wouldn't melt-in-my-mouth Maria in The Sound of Music. The way she enunciated every word so very carefully irritates me and furthermore, I really didn't like her haircut. She was very much off my radar.

Then one day, himself came home from grocery shopping and had seen a bargain book bin - six books for $10. That's not something he could resist. I understand. I would have been totally tempted by that too. The books were slightly damaged, hence the sale price but he still couldn't walk by. The trouble was that there weren't six books that were of interest but a bargain is a bargain after all. Thus, I became the proud owner of the book you see here.

The other bargain books, the ones I was really interested in, were read in no time. I needed new reading material. Was I really going to read about Ms. Sugar and Spice? Well, I did. I loved it. Really.

The autobiography features her early life and I have to say, the lady is funny.

I laughed out loud at some sections of the book. She's also warm and loving when she describes her (rather eccentric) family and her friends. I mean, how can you dislike a woman who describes how she and her brother were evacuated into the county as children during the war and describes how the two of them shared a boiled egg for breakfast every morning, each having the yolk one day and the white the next?

'Why' she says 'no-one thought to make scrambled eggs,I'll never know'.

Of course, that was just one tiny thing that appealed to my admittedly strange British sense of humour but the book is written in such a warm and honest way that even if you have the same feelings about Julie Andrews that I did, you'll enjoy this book. Throughout, there are photographs of her family, friends and early life in the theatre that makes her narrative even more believable and lively.

It really ought to be made into a film - but not starring Julie Andrew, please.

Tip: When you read the book, take a look at the photograph of Julie Andrews in her Eliza Doolittle costume painting. It was painted by Annigoni in early 1959. Now look at the lettering you can see in the background on the right hand side of the wall.That is the spookiest thing.

A highly recommended book

I think that one of the factors I loved about this autobiography is that Julie Andrews came across as being totally and completely sincere.

Nothing was whitewashed. The stories of her childhood seemed to be completely uncensored as did everything she described.

Although I'd heard her sing so many times,I had no idea about her training and how arduous it was.

It's funny how I was so reluctant to read this book and yet how much I thoroughly enjoyed it. That was an interesting lesson to learn.

This is a great selection of videos and also shows Julie Andrews as an older lady. Don't miss the interview with her and Christopher Plummer. The interviewer puts them on the spot and asks them the names of the seven Von Trapp children. Can they remember? Can you?

But first, here she is discussing the book.

I guess that no article about Julie Andrews would be complete without a clip from The Sound Of Music. I really didn't like her in this film at all.

I know that it is loved by millions allover the world but the film never appealed to me much either. Although sneakily,I have to admit that it's fun to see the video clip. I think the book is softening me up.

Until I read the book,I had no idea that Julie Andrews had been what today would be called a child star. Here's the visual proof.

© 2013 Jackie Jackson


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    • MelRootsNWrites profile image

      Melody Lassalle 3 years ago from California

      I've always had a lukewarm opinion of Julie Andrews. I loved her in Mary Poppins, but consider the Sound of Music one of the worst movies I ever had to endure. But your review has made me think this may be an interesting read and reminds me that the famous aren't always just what we see in the media. Well done on your review!

    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @SBPI Inc: I certainly have, Jonathan. She's a marvellous lady.Did you have time to watch the videos? She is still so attractive and gracious and seeing her perform as a child is fascinating.

    • SBPI Inc profile image

      SBPI Inc 4 years ago

      I too have always very much loved Julie Andrews and always thought that she was a free and wonderful spirit and quite a unique person. I also had always wanted and hoped to meet her, in fact I tried several times but could never connect. My loss.Great lens and am glad that you have come aboard.Jonathan

    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @KateFeredayEshete: She really is - exceptional is the word. I'm so glad that I read the book. Otherwise I would have never known what a wonderful person she is.

    • KateFeredayEshete profile image

      Kate Fereday Eshete 4 years ago from Ethiopia

      Unlike you, I have always loved Julie Andrews! I didn't know she had written a memoir so was interested to read your review. Thanks - I'm left feeling the need to know more about this exceptional lady.