Scrappy Little Nobody

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rating: 
Author: Anna Kendrick
Genres: Memoir, Non-Fiction, Humour
Read: Nov. 2017

Wow, this was much better than anticipated!

I’m not really an Anna Kendrick fan, with the exception of Pitch Perfect, but Scrappy Little Nobody was surprisingly well written and actually really interesting. Kendrick spends a few chapters on her childhood to let us know she really does come from a normal family and then she jumps into how she got into acting and what it was like adjusting to fame and Hollywood.

I found her beginnings really interesting; I had no idea she started off on Broadway at the age of 12, but I guess that helps to explain why she’s been featured in so many singing roles. She talked about her first experience on a film set when she did Camp at 14 and how surreal it was when the film featured at Sundance. She was disappointed when she told her class she was going to Sundance and they didn’t seem to care, until she later discovered they just didn’t realize she meant THE Sundance because they couldn’t picture tiny little Anna occupying the same festival as mega stars like Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.

She moved to LA straight out of high school and landed the role of Jessica on Twilight. I got a kick out of listening to her talk about Twilight and how awesome it was to get a minor role like Jessica because you got to be in the film and hang out with the stars for a few weeks each film, without any of the crazy fan notoriety, because really, who cares about Jessica anyways. But the money from Twilight kept her afloat financially for two years because even after landing a role in arguably one of the largest teen franchises (AFTER HP YOU GUYS), she still lived with two guys in a crappy apartment.

The first time I remember knowing who Kendrick was with Up in the Air. I didn’t really care for it; I remember trying to read the book and then abandoning it, not liking the movie, and promptly forgetting about it. But this was really her first major role and she was nominated for an Oscar for it! I found it fascinating though because she still never really made any money until after this movie because it was never anticipated to do so well. So even when she attended the Oscars for the first time as a nominee, she was still pretty much broke and had to be forced by her stylist to buy a $1000 pair of Louboutin shoes because evidently these things matter. I enjoyed her commentary on how ridiculous it is that when you’re starting out that you have to spend money you don’t have on purchases like this, but once you legit become famous and can afford it, designers give you their stuff for free.

Kendrick had a lot of meaningful insight into Hollywood and I like that she never takes herself too seriously. I felt this was a very honest memoir and I really did feel that she wasn’t so different to me. Even though she obviously is, she now feels like a real, down-to-earth person versus just another famous person living in a fantasy world with no clue how the rest of us live.

Bonfire

 

Rating: 
Author: Krysten Ritter
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Read: Nov. 2017

 

You guys, this was my 100th book of 2017!!! Feeling so accomplished!!

I LOVE Krysten Ritter. I’m obsessed with her role as Jessica Jones and think the show/Krysten is just the most badass superhero ever! And her instagram account makes me love her even more. She likes to knit and read mystery novels and hang out with her dog Mikey. So I was pretty excited when I saw she was writing a novel (a legit novel too, not just another celebrity autobiography)!

Bonfire didn’t like blow me out of the water or anything, but I thought it was a pretty solid debut. The writing was pretty average, but I thought the story was interesting. Bonfire is about lawyer Abby Williams who left her hometown of Barrens at 18 after some pretty strange events took place and has been running from it ever since.

She returns to Barrens as an environmental lawyer to investigate claims that Optimal, a chemical plant that provides most of the jobs in the community, has been poisoning the water supply and that people have been starting to get sick. She hated Barrens as a teenager and is plagued by memories of her friend Kaycee, who made up a story in their senior year about being sick to exploit Optimal and then disappeared. But now that other people are starting to get sick, Abby wonders if maybe Kaycee was actually telling the truth and can’t ditch the feeling that there’s something she’s missing.

I really liked the whole environmental law angle of the book and that this wasn’t just a who-dunnit murder mystery. The plot was a bit messy in some places though. Even after finishing the book, parts of the story were unclear to me and I found the ending pretty abrupt. I pictured Abby as Jessica Jones several times and I think Ritter was trying to write a gritty kind of lawyer-gone-detective character that I couldn’t quite get into. There were a few subplots that I didn’t really see the point of and some loose ends in the plot that I didn’t like.

Overall I did like this and I’m totally impressed with Ritter for writing it. There’s nothing particularly special about it, but I would definitely read another book if she ever decides to write one!