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You're on an Airplane: A Self-Mythologizing Memoir

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It's hard not to love Parker Posey. A singularly gifted actress with a wickedly funny personality that belies her movie star status, her cross-generational fame stems from starring roles in such unforgettable movies as Dazed and Confused, Party Girl, and You've Got Mail, and her recurring roles in Christopher Guest's mockumentaries, including his most recent, Mascots, on N It's hard not to love Parker Posey. A singularly gifted actress with a wickedly funny personality that belies her movie star status, her cross-generational fame stems from starring roles in such unforgettable movies as Dazed and Confused, Party Girl, and You've Got Mail, and her recurring roles in Christopher Guest's mockumentaries, including his most recent, Mascots, on Netflix. With remarkable candor and a refreshing perspective on life in the spotlight, Posey opens up about the art of acting, life on the set, and the realities of its accompanying fame. She explores her relationships with brilliant directors like Christopher Guest and Woody Allen, as well as the nerves and expectations that come with the territory. A funny and authentic childhood prepared Posey for a life of creating and entertaining, which not only extends to acting but to the craft of pottery, sewing, collage, yoga and cooking, all of which readers will find in this highly entertaining book. In You're On an Airplane, Posey delves into her personal style--unique, famously inspiring, and never indebted to trends--as well as her approach to everyday life on and off set. Laugh-out-loud advice from her legendary Greenwich Village therapist Mildred Newman appears alongside poignant portrayals of painful relationships and the love she has for her dog, Gracie. For fans of Nora Ephron's spot-on commentary, Jenny Lawson's absurdly comical foibles, Amy Sedaris's unexpectedly hilarious quips, and Carrie Brownstein's cool-girl appeal, You're On an Airplane proves Posey has a voice that will enchant fans and old and new alike.


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It's hard not to love Parker Posey. A singularly gifted actress with a wickedly funny personality that belies her movie star status, her cross-generational fame stems from starring roles in such unforgettable movies as Dazed and Confused, Party Girl, and You've Got Mail, and her recurring roles in Christopher Guest's mockumentaries, including his most recent, Mascots, on N It's hard not to love Parker Posey. A singularly gifted actress with a wickedly funny personality that belies her movie star status, her cross-generational fame stems from starring roles in such unforgettable movies as Dazed and Confused, Party Girl, and You've Got Mail, and her recurring roles in Christopher Guest's mockumentaries, including his most recent, Mascots, on Netflix. With remarkable candor and a refreshing perspective on life in the spotlight, Posey opens up about the art of acting, life on the set, and the realities of its accompanying fame. She explores her relationships with brilliant directors like Christopher Guest and Woody Allen, as well as the nerves and expectations that come with the territory. A funny and authentic childhood prepared Posey for a life of creating and entertaining, which not only extends to acting but to the craft of pottery, sewing, collage, yoga and cooking, all of which readers will find in this highly entertaining book. In You're On an Airplane, Posey delves into her personal style--unique, famously inspiring, and never indebted to trends--as well as her approach to everyday life on and off set. Laugh-out-loud advice from her legendary Greenwich Village therapist Mildred Newman appears alongside poignant portrayals of painful relationships and the love she has for her dog, Gracie. For fans of Nora Ephron's spot-on commentary, Jenny Lawson's absurdly comical foibles, Amy Sedaris's unexpectedly hilarious quips, and Carrie Brownstein's cool-girl appeal, You're On an Airplane proves Posey has a voice that will enchant fans and old and new alike.

30 review for You're on an Airplane: A Self-Mythologizing Memoir

  1. 5 out of 5

    Krista

    My book is called You're on an Airplane. It's a memoir pronounced with the emphasis on “me”. Think of it like an actor who was cornered into writing. The opening premise of You're on an Airplane is that you're sitting beside Parker Posey on a flight, and with such close proximity and time to waste, she begins to tell you about her life and her career as an indy actor. The premise is embraced in the beginning – with Posey interrupting her storytelling to ask the flight attendant for a seltzer or a My book is called You're on an Airplane. It's a memoir pronounced with the emphasis on “me”. Think of it like an actor who was cornered into writing. The opening premise of You're on an Airplane is that you're sitting beside Parker Posey on a flight, and with such close proximity and time to waste, she begins to tell you about her life and her career as an indy actor. The premise is embraced in the beginning – with Posey interrupting her storytelling to ask the flight attendant for a seltzer or a warm cookie; to ask sporadic questions of yourself – but the concept eventually kind of fizzles out, with fewer and fewer references to the imaginary scenario as it goes along. (Which was fine so far as smooth storytelling goes, but it did make the conceit feel slightly pointless in the end.) A celebrity memoir is a strange animal – the author presumably wants to tell you about herself, but it's not like she owes you her soul – and while I learned plenty about Parker Posey's childhood, hobbies, and celebrity encounters, there's nothing deeply revelatory or shocking here (and again, she doesn't owe me that anyway.) Usual caveat: I read an ARC and quotes may not be in their final forms. I was on As the World Turns at the time, fresh from dropping out of college after three years on probation, mainly for a bad attitude because I didn't want to rehearse scenes in acting class, preferring instead to wing it. I had a lazy attitude for things I didn't feel were important, like circus class. I didn't have the guts to be a real clown and already knew how to juggle. I skipped class to clown around and kept my probation letters in the freezer, for some reason – an act of self-preservation, maybe. Posey reveals an interesting family tree; with big personalities going back a few generations and her own parents seeming like cool but odd ducks (I loved the newborn picture of Posey wearing false eyelashes: “You were so small I didn't know what to do with you”, explained her Mom). But there's really nothing about how Posey broke into acting – all of sudden she's on a popular soap opera while also filming Dazed and Confused. From there, Posey recalls film projects out of any chronological order, and while from her stories you understand that she approaches acting as a serious art form – filming scenes often leave her exhausted, hysterical, or in tears – there's nothing about her processes or personal philosophy of her craft. Auditioning feels like my real self has been punished and sent to my room, while my pretend self is forced to make nice when there is nothing I've done wrong. At an audition in my twenties I spazzed out so much that the casting director asked my agent if I was on drugs. I wasn't, but just had lots of energy and was excited to be there. Posey writes about her more famous costars over the years, but it's not gossipy (the few times she has something slightly negative to say about someone, she doesn't name the person). She found Wesley Snipes to be distant, Vince Vaughn to be sweetly supportive; Liza Minnelli and Catherine O'Hara to be funny and wise; Louis CK is a complicated auteur and Woody Allen is the “greatest living director”. On meeting Liev Schreiber: Liev came in fresh off his motorcycle, holding his helmet and exuding a strong actor's attitude. He acted like he'd just finished Yale School of Drama, which he had. This was before The New York Times said he was the greatest living theater actor of his generation, or something to that extent. He was the envy of so many of his contemporaries and treated the small part as a favor to Daisy, which it was. Liev is spectacular onstage. He later told me that he almost didn't do the part in Party Girl because I seemed like an idiot. In addition to interesting enough storytelling, the book itself contains pages of collage, recipes, and both a very long description of a sequence of yoga moves and a very long explanation of how to throw clay on a pottery wheel. With stories of meeting with a dog psychic to discuss her emotional service animal (and beloved pet, Gracie), investigating Ayurvedic medicine (as it relates to the nature of your own body in conflict with the nature of the settings it finds itself in), and meeting with an analyst who explains the mental stress of Posey exposing herself onscreen as an unconscious reenactment of having been put on display in an incubator as a premature infant, there's a real risk of Posey coming off as a bit flakey. But then I read a review in The Wall Street Journal which goes: In her book, the actress finds her own ways to provoke. At one point, she refers to her past lives in India. Asked about it, she said she enjoys toying with the image that people have of her. “It’s like I’m playing with being the person people expect,” Ms. Posey said, “performing that on paper.” If that's Posey's game, it's not obvious; but okay – she's the artist here. You don't get the sense that Posey is living the fabulous celebrity lifestyle of fame and fortune, and it's also hard to say from this memoir if what she has is worth the tradeoff of not being able to live a normal, anonymous life. There's a late scene at the co-op pottery studio she's a member of – a place that expects its members to share the chores or pay a $15/month fee – and another woman tells her that by paying the fee, it makes it seem to the other members that Posey must think she's special. Posey explains that she is special; she's famous; she can't go to the grocery store without being recognised by someone. And this scene seems like the crux of the book: It's hard to feel sorry, exactly, for a middle aged actress who still has the cachet to only work on projects that personally appeal to her, but what cost does she pay for this career? On the one hand, why would she want to spend her limited down time mopping a pottery studio? But on the other hand, it makes her seem totally out of touch – this is not a “normal” life, and that must be hard. People say such weird things to you when you're famous – like a cardboard cutout version of yourself wearing a mirrored mask. Ultimately, we don't learn anything deeply personal about Posey in this memoir (not that she owes the reader that) and this isn't your typical “How I broke into show business” (a la Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Mindy Kalin) celebrity origin story. You're on an Airplane contains the story of a life, but it does feel crafted and curated; but what else would you expect an artist to create? This may be of more interest to someone who watches more indy movies than I do, but I wasn't unhappy to have joined Posey on this flight.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Molly Ferguson

    Oh, Parker Posey. How I loved you. This was so badly written, it seemed like she wrote random interesting sentences or paragraphs on napkins, flung them in the air, and had someone else type them into a book. There was ZERO order to the memoir - not by chronology, theme, nothing. I was 250 pages in before she starting talking about the Christopher Guest movies. Worst of all, I like her less after reading this because in a lot of her anecdotes, she comes off as kind of a jerk - reminding people i Oh, Parker Posey. How I loved you. This was so badly written, it seemed like she wrote random interesting sentences or paragraphs on napkins, flung them in the air, and had someone else type them into a book. There was ZERO order to the memoir - not by chronology, theme, nothing. I was 250 pages in before she starting talking about the Christopher Guest movies. Worst of all, I like her less after reading this because in a lot of her anecdotes, she comes off as kind of a jerk - reminding people in her pottery club "But I'm famous," or asking waitstaff why french toast isn't available at their fancy brunch, or giving a flight attendant a hard time about her dog. The only reason I kept reading were the pictures throughout - now those were delightful.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ryan

    There are few actors where I would watch a tv show or film just because they’re in it. Parker Posey is one of those actors. She’s not the most famous people out there, though she had a streak of indie films in the 90s. But Parker has been in some really great films (“Best in Show,” “Josie & The Pussycats.”) Recently, she played Dr. Smith in “Lost in Space,” an interesting take on a classic tv character. Her part in “Columbus” with John Cho was subtle and nuanced in a quiet film about relatio There are few actors where I would watch a tv show or film just because they’re in it. Parker Posey is one of those actors. She’s not the most famous people out there, though she had a streak of indie films in the 90s. But Parker has been in some really great films (“Best in Show,” “Josie & The Pussycats.”) Recently, she played Dr. Smith in “Lost in Space,” an interesting take on a classic tv character. Her part in “Columbus” with John Cho was subtle and nuanced in a quiet film about relationships in the middle of Indiana. This isn’t a typical memoir. The premise is that you’re on a plane with Parker Posey listening to her talk. I recommend the audiobook for the full experience, complete with the sound effects of the plane engine, seat belt sign “ding,” and the serving of drinks. This memoir also has recipes, which I love. This book contains stories told topically, not chronologically, but touches on her big moments and explores her life outside of film. I think anyone could enjoy this book, but it’s a must read for fans. Follow her on Instagram for many photos and videos of her adorable dog, Gracie. • Audiobook • Nonfiction - Memoir • ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ • Purchased on Audible.▪️

  4. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Griffin

    You know that old saying, “Never meet your heroes.”? ‘Nuf said.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Fabulous Book Fiend

    I listened to this book on audio and it was read by the author and that's why I love reading a memoir in audio form. The added bonus to listening to this one on audio was that Parker Posey has written this as if she is chatting to the reader on an aeroplane and so we have added audio features such as the sound of the trolley, the sound of her dog and her speaking to us as if we are her seat mate-it was great fun! One of the other things I love about reading memoirs of actors is the love they have I listened to this book on audio and it was read by the author and that's why I love reading a memoir in audio form. The added bonus to listening to this one on audio was that Parker Posey has written this as if she is chatting to the reader on an aeroplane and so we have added audio features such as the sound of the trolley, the sound of her dog and her speaking to us as if we are her seat mate-it was great fun! One of the other things I love about reading memoirs of actors is the love they have for the film industry and other actors in their field. Parker has some great stories about spending time with actors and directors and also has some great stories about her love of films and actresses from the past. It is great to find out the kind of films that she enjoyed both making and watching. While she does go into the different films she has made and the TV shows she has starred in, she also talks a lot about her personal life, her childhood and her decision to adopt a dog and become vegan. She also includes things like breathing exercises she does, yoga poses and recipes and talks you through them so you could realistically make the recipe or follow the breathing, I thought this was a real added gem! Some of the ideas and beliefs she shares are fairly 'unconventional' and that's also what makes this book stand out from other memoirs I have read recently and I liked how open and honest she was about her opinions and ideas on how things should be and what's wrong with the way they are. She also explains why she chose the cover image which really was appreciated. I think even if you haven't seen this actress in a lot of things, this memoir stands up on its own as something to read and enjoy and I really recommend the audiobook!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Courtenay

    I think her quirkiness shines through even more by listening to the audiobook. Don't think I would have enjoyed it as much without her personality coming through the speakers.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Hank Stuever

    3.5 stars would be more like it. Enjoyably larky, with an especially artful and funny opening. But at a certain point, the lack of organization gets the better of her; like many celeb memoirs, the back half of the book suffers. I liked her stories about growing up in Louisiana (who knew?) and her fondness for her parents and elders. There’s plenty here about her childhood, but apparently she was never a teenager. She goes from 10 to 24. (To me, she’ll always be the mean girl from the class of ‘7 3.5 stars would be more like it. Enjoyably larky, with an especially artful and funny opening. But at a certain point, the lack of organization gets the better of her; like many celeb memoirs, the back half of the book suffers. I liked her stories about growing up in Louisiana (who knew?) and her fondness for her parents and elders. There’s plenty here about her childhood, but apparently she was never a teenager. She goes from 10 to 24. (To me, she’ll always be the mean girl from the class of ‘77 in “Dazed and Confused.”) Anyhow, some good LOLs here. I was less enamored when she goes off on spiritual/mystical tangents.

  8. 4 out of 5

    John Spiller

    Have you ever been to a family reunion where you spend extended time with the aunt who has a reputation as being eccentric or a bit of a "free spirit"? While she comes off as a bit dotty, you realize that underneath she's lot a smarter than she lets on. Well, Parker Posey is that aunt. "You're on an Airplane" begins with the conceit that Parker Posey has just sat next to you on an airplane and begins unspooling a circumloctory account of her family, her childhood, her acting career, yoga, potter Have you ever been to a family reunion where you spend extended time with the aunt who has a reputation as being eccentric or a bit of a "free spirit"? While she comes off as a bit dotty, you realize that underneath she's lot a smarter than she lets on. Well, Parker Posey is that aunt. "You're on an Airplane" begins with the conceit that Parker Posey has just sat next to you on an airplane and begins unspooling a circumloctory account of her family, her childhood, her acting career, yoga, pottery, and "live pie," among other things. I found her stories about her family and her childhood delightful. I would have preferred more stories about her acting career in lieu of chapters on yoga poses and making pottery. Some have criticized this book as not being sufficiently biographical; we don't learn enough about what makes Parker Posey tick. Well, look at the book title. If you are looking for a conventional biographical memoir, you will be disappointed. If you enjoyed Illena Douglas's "I Blame Dennis Hopper," then you will likely enjoy "You're on an Airplane".

  9. 4 out of 5

    LeAnn Locher

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! This memoir reveals that Parker Posey is just as unique, eccentric, brilliant and weird as the characters she plays. The fact that the premise is you’re sitting next to her (and her dog Gracie) on a plane as she’s rambling on throughout the whole flight is made even better in the audiobook when she makes sure you hear Gracie snoring. I loved that the order made little sense, but the whole weaving together of stories totally works. The memoir also reveals Parker’s Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! This memoir reveals that Parker Posey is just as unique, eccentric, brilliant and weird as the characters she plays. The fact that the premise is you’re sitting next to her (and her dog Gracie) on a plane as she’s rambling on throughout the whole flight is made even better in the audiobook when she makes sure you hear Gracie snoring. I loved that the order made little sense, but the whole weaving together of stories totally works. The memoir also reveals Parker’s ongoing therapy and struggles. I loved her work before I read this but now I want to see all of her films.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ryan Kenney

    Parker Posey is the backbone of the film industry. Whether she knows it or not, she singlehandedly holds Hollywood together. Weaving seamlessly in between leading indie films and bouncy supporting roles in big budget flicks. In her memoir, Posey tells her life story to you, personally. It’s not a tell all, burn bridges bitch fest or even a weepy sad tale of a hard knock life into a great success story. Instead, Parker Posey gives us some delightful inside stories about the silliness of the indus Parker Posey is the backbone of the film industry. Whether she knows it or not, she singlehandedly holds Hollywood together. Weaving seamlessly in between leading indie films and bouncy supporting roles in big budget flicks. In her memoir, Posey tells her life story to you, personally. It’s not a tell all, burn bridges bitch fest or even a weepy sad tale of a hard knock life into a great success story. Instead, Parker Posey gives us some delightful inside stories about the silliness of the industry while also delightfully confused about how she has lasted so long in “the business.”

  11. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Fitch

    Definitely holds to the title of what it would be like to sit next to Parker on an airplane. Book skips around and is written in a conversational tone but doesn’t give much depth or insight into her life or career but has collages, recipes, and I did get a tutorial in pottery!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Donny Avery

    Have you ever listened to an audiobook and then to listen to it again, right away? That’s how I feel about this book 🧡🧡🧡. I feel Parker and I are kindred spirits.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Alison

    I love Parker Posey but just couldn't get into this book, despite my initial enthusiasm when it was released. I appreciate that she tried a novel approach: the entire book is written as if she's your seatmate on a flight. It feels like something that might work as an improv sketch, but as a book I found it clumsy. Guess I'll have to wait for a biography of her rather than her me-moir. As it stands, I abandoned this one after a mere two chapters.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Christine Barry

    **I received an ARC copy of this book through a Goodreads Giveaway in exchange for an honest review** I struggled to find words to say how I felt about this book, much like I struggled to finish this book. I was intrigued, then confused, then bored, then lost by the end. At the start of the book, you the reader are Posey’s seat mate on an airplane, having a conversation about life, but this premise is quickly lost by the time you get halfway through. It made the whole structure seem pointless. On **I received an ARC copy of this book through a Goodreads Giveaway in exchange for an honest review** I struggled to find words to say how I felt about this book, much like I struggled to finish this book. I was intrigued, then confused, then bored, then lost by the end. At the start of the book, you the reader are Posey’s seat mate on an airplane, having a conversation about life, but this premise is quickly lost by the time you get halfway through. It made the whole structure seem pointless. One minute we’re getting a random story like from a conversation, but then we’re getting her whole childhood like in a biography. I was just put off I guess by the lack of structure or timeline. For me, there was no build up to anything. Because all of her stories and encounters were out of order, I had a hard time following her progress as a person. Sometimes she would describe things in great detail, but others were so lofty I’m still not sure I understood. I still fail to see the need to include the three pages of “how to make pottery” or “how to breathe”. Some of her stories were interesting, but at the end of it there was no connection, I didn’t feel anything for her or this character she chose to portray in this memoir. Not a bad read, but I doubt I’ll re-read this.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kris Hill

    A memoir doesn't need to be entirely accurate to be truthful. I can't decide if this memoir rings true or not, it's titled "self-mythologizing" which leads me to believe that it's probably not as truthful as it could be, but I can't believe anyone would pretend to be this person if given the opportunity to let the world believe that they were anyone else. Parker Posey comes across as pretentious, condescending, and kind of boring in this memoir. If that is the type of person she has to be to prov A memoir doesn't need to be entirely accurate to be truthful. I can't decide if this memoir rings true or not, it's titled "self-mythologizing" which leads me to believe that it's probably not as truthful as it could be, but I can't believe anyone would pretend to be this person if given the opportunity to let the world believe that they were anyone else. Parker Posey comes across as pretentious, condescending, and kind of boring in this memoir. If that is the type of person she has to be to provide us with the work she has in her acting career, I think it is worth it, but I wouldn't recommend reading this if you want to stay an unreserved fan of hers.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kelly Jones

    A fun read in which we get to see a bit of what life looks like through the eyes of P. Posey. The random fun collage art throughout is what took my rating up to a 5. That, and learning that there was a period in P.P.'s life where she'd holler out to strangers "are you a vegan?"

  17. 4 out of 5

    Sam Crews

    She is a gem. Original style, fantastic storytelling, and just plain heartwarming. I loved it.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Tara

    Too much sucking up to Woody Allen and Louis CK, not enough about Josie and the Pussycats.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kristianne

    I got to interview Parker Posey about her new book for Shelf Awareness: http://www.shelf-awareness.com/reader...

  20. 5 out of 5

    Erin Tuzuner

    As dry, strange, and comforting as you would expect sitting next to a version of Parker Posey on a flight. The audio is a sheer and utter delight - from recipes to dog psychics to good advice to a gnarled family tree - she's a fucking cool person cresting 50 from a world and films that aren't really around anymore.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)

    I've found Parker Posey's film roles to be weird and random (and usually brilliant), so I've always imagined her to be a weird and random individual. Turns out I was right. You're on an Airplane is Posey's memoir, written as if she finds herself bored on a long flight and decides to spend her time telling stories about her life to the person seated next to her on the airplane. The stories she chooses to share are told in no particular order, spanning childhood and near present day throughout the bo I've found Parker Posey's film roles to be weird and random (and usually brilliant), so I've always imagined her to be a weird and random individual. Turns out I was right. You're on an Airplane is Posey's memoir, written as if she finds herself bored on a long flight and decides to spend her time telling stories about her life to the person seated next to her on the airplane. The stories she chooses to share are told in no particular order, spanning childhood and near present day throughout the book.  (I mention this first because it may be a bookish peeve for some readers who need chronological order or at least a theme.) She tells us some stories of her childhood, with obvious love and adoration for her parents and her twin brother.  These stories were my favorite because I could tell that the love and support of her family made her bold and confident in her abilities as an entertainer. Posey never discusses how exactly she broke into show business or offers much insight into the industry itself; we go in with the understanding that she had a passion for acting that she followed doggedly.  She shares brief stories of some of her most notable films and the actors/directors she's worked with.  A favorite of mine was her reaction to meeting Matthew McConaughey on the set of Dazed and Confused:  she called her agent to say he was going to be a huge star and they should represent him immediately, which the agent ignored (and Posey still pointedly reminds them about to this day). She goes in to some detail on working with Woody Allen, whom she considers to be "the greatest living director", and the anxiety over preparing for her role in his film.   She seemed most open about her role on the Louis CK show Louie, discussing her obvious admiration of him and his work. I love that she didn't use her memoir as a way to drop bombshell information or gossip.  She doesn't speak negatively of anyone or give personal details about relationships as so many celebrities choose to do. There are some curious tales of pet psychics and visits to a New Age type therapist that had me wondering if they were jokes thrown in to amp up her eccentricities. Posey includes two incredibly detailed descriptions (each several pages long) of yoga poses and creating pottery.  She obviously enjoys both yoga and pottery but I couldn't help but skip these sections because I wanted to read about her life, not get an in-depth lesson on her hobbies. By the end of this odd memoir, I realized Posey has crafted a pretty interesting monologue (showcasing once again what a great actress she is), choosing to share some of her life with readers while making fun of and playing up the impression the public has of her based on her film roles.   I don't believe this book will work for everyone because the humor can be so subtle or just plain weird.  I would've appreciated more about her life, especially her teen years which she seemed to skip over entirely, and more insight into her personal thoughts on the roles she's chosen. I think this would've been even more enjoyable if I'd listened to the audiobook (which is narrated by Posey herself) because I felt by the end of the book that she'd created this as an actor's monologue. Flaky celebrity memoir or the personal monologue of an intelligent comedic actress?  Readers seem divided.   I feel slightly disappointed that there wasn't more insight into her early years, but I still had fun on this flight with the eccentric Ms. Posey. For more full reviews, visit www.rootsandreads.wordpress.com

  22. 5 out of 5

    Nick

    Confession: This is my very first audiobook. I can get ridiculous with my purist mentality. If someone creates content with the primary intention that it will be read, I feel like I need to experience it how they intended to honor their work. As a reader, not a listener. Give me the words on the page, not on a screen and not over the air. But when it comes to this particular genre of celebrity memoir/essays, I always felt slightly underwhelmed by what I was reading. After Tina, Amy, Mindy, Aziz, Confession: This is my very first audiobook. I can get ridiculous with my purist mentality. If someone creates content with the primary intention that it will be read, I feel like I need to experience it how they intended to honor their work. As a reader, not a listener. Give me the words on the page, not on a screen and not over the air. But when it comes to this particular genre of celebrity memoir/essays, I always felt slightly underwhelmed by what I was reading. After Tina, Amy, Mindy, Aziz, Lena, Ellen, etc., a friend (shout out to the one and only BJ McLez) suggested I try out the audio versions. Many of these people write content to perform or are first and foremost performers. That’s where they excel and it could enhance the experience of taking in their stories. FINE! YOU’RE RIGHT. Parker Posey’s voice is singular and I didn’t have to think twice about having her be the one to introduce me to this new world. The book is loosely framed as if you’re sitting next to Parker on the airplane, so I feel that having her telling the stories to me in that friendly stranger tone added something to the experience. The way she talks...this is like a meditation. Feels good to listen. (A friend reading the book right now did let me know the artwork is pure insanity, so I’m going to make sure I can flip through a print version at some point.) My favorite thing about this book is that I was surprised how perfectly Parker hit on the “what the fuck is going on” melancholy of the past chunk o’ years when it comes to social media, content consumption and horrible news/politics. She reaches this through the lens of her journey as an indie darling in an increasingly money-obsessed entertainment industry. It’s fucking hard out there, man. Hearing a true-to-yourself soul like Parker navigating it all helps. I can also listen to Parker forcing herself into vampire culture anytime. Hilarious. Another thing that stands out is how she owns the celebrity element that dramatically changes her everyday life compared to others. “I am different.” It seems like other celebrity authors can take a sheepish, “aw shucks” approach to this to seem more relatable or to avoid coming off like they feel greater than thou or larger than life. Her book was refreshing. Only a few lulls for me in the audio. The yoga chapter didn’t translate for me and the audio version made it a little more difficult to follow the family stories - wait, are we talking about your grandma’s husband or your great grandma’s or your dad or... I’ll leave you with a nice summary I read by Laura Adamczyk over on The A.V. Club: “...the scene-stealer recounts her life, both personal and professional, in a freewheeling style that can feel dizzying. She starts with one story, walks away from it or dives into an aside, before picking up the narrative thread and putting a button on the whole thing. It’s enjoyable in the way getting drunk can be: You don’t feel entirely tethered, but you’re having a good time.”

  23. 4 out of 5

    Shawn Hill

    So the conceit here is that you've encountered Parker on an airplane, which she has to take to get places just like everyone else, and she's in a chatty mood whether you like it or not. Of course if you are a devoted Parker fan like me (ever since Party Girl if not before), you will love these little vignette-sized insights into her creative and personal life. Not really so much of the personal except for family biography, it's more the life of a working actress kind of memoir. She doesn't gossi So the conceit here is that you've encountered Parker on an airplane, which she has to take to get places just like everyone else, and she's in a chatty mood whether you like it or not. Of course if you are a devoted Parker fan like me (ever since Party Girl if not before), you will love these little vignette-sized insights into her creative and personal life. Not really so much of the personal except for family biography, it's more the life of a working actress kind of memoir. She doesn't gossip about her boyfriends, and she only says nice things about other actors (Emma Stone is charming and pretty, Joaquin Phoenix seems to share a special rapport, the Dazed and Confused cast will always be her buddies). But you still get insights into her creative process and her struggles before the camera, as in negotiating a collaboration with the enigmatic Woody Allen on two films. She also talks about working with Louie (she did an amazing couple of episodes with him, and he gave her character a real poignant and dramatic arc). Her experiences were all before (or during, with regards to Allen) recent controversies, but she's just sharing how she found these creative directors, from her perspective. She applies this as well to Lord Christopher Haden-Guest, who apparently was her doorway into improv, a place where of course she excels given her creative penchant for pottery, collage, home improvement, and many other avenues of artistic expression she explores in the book. Perhaps the greatest thing about it is that it's full of accidental aphorisms, little slightly acid ironies that maybe aren't quite Oscar Wilde level but close and quirky. Chastised about not doing her chores at the pottery collective (she instead opted to pay a monthly fee), a woman is certain that she doesn't want to be seen as special by others. "But I am special" Parker quietly asserts. "I'm famous."

  24. 5 out of 5

    Aaron

    Much like a worthy independent movie of the 90s, Parker Posey's book wanders through eccentric adventures, characters and there's lots of colorful dialogue. This being a perfect format structured as a conversation between Posey (your friendly co-passenger on a plane) and you, the audience. There's groovy content like recipes (Chex-mix variations, pies, and a cocktail involving jawbreakers) , yoga instruction ( a lengthy chapter which may bore some, but the instructor is Parker Posey!) and the bo Much like a worthy independent movie of the 90s, Parker Posey's book wanders through eccentric adventures, characters and there's lots of colorful dialogue. This being a perfect format structured as a conversation between Posey (your friendly co-passenger on a plane) and you, the audience. There's groovy content like recipes (Chex-mix variations, pies, and a cocktail involving jawbreakers) , yoga instruction ( a lengthy chapter which may bore some, but the instructor is Parker Posey!) and the book positively glows with super-evocative nostalgia for 1970s childhoods. There are numerous examples of that decade's unique darkness and careless fun, everything from bad parenting, Star's Eyes, and "Little House on the Prarie". Posey's crafts and creative embellishments adorn pages in between chapters, but before you can judge the playful production as a scrapbook comes the best part: to those interested in film-making, Posey delivers the goods. Not just juicy anecdotes--though there's loads of them--but her insights about the changes in movies, the Dark Ages of the "oughts" (or "ought nots") , the absurdity of genre cinema being taken seriously, the genius of Christopher Guest's constructed improvisation, and Posey's own anxiety attacks having to impress imbecile producers of vampire films--let alone tolerate actors like Wesley Snipes. It's all here. The book may disappoint those nauseated by hipsters (Posey goes too easy on the pierced and tattooed masses who pollute NYC and Vancouver and every other city gifted with actual culture). Plus, any "normie" who stumbles into a theater screening one of her best movies (no, not the Woody Allen ones) will never "get" her style. Or the movie. Or the book. But the production is unique and a perfect expression of an actress too talented to be ignored.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Libra

    Parky Posey is quite the character. She has slipped in and out of many. I knew her from Dazed and Confused. Then I realized that she was in a few other films that I watched. She tells you, the reader, all about it as you and her share an aisle on a flight into New York. Of course, she is the one doing all the talking, but she will stop mid-thought to ask what you think. Then carry on. Posey very briefly talks about her current character in Lost In Space, yoga, cooking, and "throwing" clay. Everyt Parky Posey is quite the character. She has slipped in and out of many. I knew her from Dazed and Confused. Then I realized that she was in a few other films that I watched. She tells you, the reader, all about it as you and her share an aisle on a flight into New York. Of course, she is the one doing all the talking, but she will stop mid-thought to ask what you think. Then carry on. Posey very briefly talks about her current character in Lost In Space, yoga, cooking, and "throwing" clay. Everything else is her journey through acting and moving and the relationships she has with family and friends along the way. Posey highlights her adoration of three Hollywood personalities in particular that I do not vibe with at all--CK Louis, Woody Allen, and Jimmy Fallon. I think part of the Hollywood trend is to praise and worship those who gave you a job when you didn't have one at the time. It's like these people saved you from going broke or from going crazy from boredom. So you let their unbecoming behavior/actions slide as a token of gratitude (and possible future gigs). It's possible it could genuine too, but these guys? Really? Thankfully she has another character to play now. Hopefully she does not have to jump through as many Hollywood hoops to keep going.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Sue Fernandez

    Look. I'm quirky, I say things off the top of my head, and I like Parker Posey. But, I'd preordered this, and I just had such a hard time getting through it. And, I rarely give below a 4 rating (because if I can get through it, and there aren't glaring issues, I know the author worked hard...) I just could not with this one. I'm going to try again, because truth: I couldn't finish the last third. I like her, I want to like this. That said, I read every review written thus far, thinking maybe I w Look. I'm quirky, I say things off the top of my head, and I like Parker Posey. But, I'd preordered this, and I just had such a hard time getting through it. And, I rarely give below a 4 rating (because if I can get through it, and there aren't glaring issues, I know the author worked hard...) I just could not with this one. I'm going to try again, because truth: I couldn't finish the last third. I like her, I want to like this. That said, I read every review written thus far, thinking maybe I was way off the mark. I've noticed a couple reviewers felt her personality came through in the audio version. So if I had to give some advice, I'd say this didn't seem to translate well into the written word, but the audio might be much better.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Campbell

    Sounds just like her. (Is there an audiobook?) As befits the book conceptually, the digressions on family are better heard than read; as the book went on I ended up skimming most of that stuff. The impression I'm left with is that Ms. Posey knows who she is but rarely gets to be herself in her job, which she loves and laments in turn. Acting seems a lonely life. The segments on Woody Allen and Louie CK, especially, demonstrate a shrewder mind than the parts she's played. It's refreshing to encount Sounds just like her. (Is there an audiobook?) As befits the book conceptually, the digressions on family are better heard than read; as the book went on I ended up skimming most of that stuff. The impression I'm left with is that Ms. Posey knows who she is but rarely gets to be herself in her job, which she loves and laments in turn. Acting seems a lonely life. The segments on Woody Allen and Louie CK, especially, demonstrate a shrewder mind than the parts she's played. It's refreshing to encounter an actor who's even more interesting than her roles.

  28. 5 out of 5

    A.C. Collins

    Zipped through this one while relaxing on the beach, and it was the perfect read for the occasion. It's written like a monologue with responses dropped here and there to an anonymous listener, suggestively the reader. It's witty, as we'd expect from Parker Posey, but also insightful. It reads a little like one long bit, but all good bits have universal truths that resonate. She writes a lot about different movie projects she's done and directors she's worked with, which is fun to read. Definitel Zipped through this one while relaxing on the beach, and it was the perfect read for the occasion. It's written like a monologue with responses dropped here and there to an anonymous listener, suggestively the reader. It's witty, as we'd expect from Parker Posey, but also insightful. It reads a little like one long bit, but all good bits have universal truths that resonate. She writes a lot about different movie projects she's done and directors she's worked with, which is fun to read. Definitely recommend.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Richard

    I adored this book. The premise is that you're sitting next to Parker Posey on an airplane as she tells you about her life - her childhood, her career, various moments in her life. The anecdotes aren't strictly chronological, but there is a kind of scatterbrained logic that feels like it pulls a reader through her quirky musings. I fell in love with her voice as a writer - her prose is inviting and uncomplicated. And the book truly gives a sense of her deliciously oddball personality. Highly rec I adored this book. The premise is that you're sitting next to Parker Posey on an airplane as she tells you about her life - her childhood, her career, various moments in her life. The anecdotes aren't strictly chronological, but there is a kind of scatterbrained logic that feels like it pulls a reader through her quirky musings. I fell in love with her voice as a writer - her prose is inviting and uncomplicated. And the book truly gives a sense of her deliciously oddball personality. Highly recommended!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Simon Sweetman

    You know how, so often, you're a little let down to find out that the actor/musician/creative type is fronting somewhat, is not quite how you thought they would be or how they've presented themselves in - and through - their work? Not here. Parker Posey on the page is the same as the very one you've seen on the stage. She's always been playing versions of herself even with what sometimes seems like an aversion to herself. A great read - fun, light, but with some strong stories and refreshing poi You know how, so often, you're a little let down to find out that the actor/musician/creative type is fronting somewhat, is not quite how you thought they would be or how they've presented themselves in - and through - their work? Not here. Parker Posey on the page is the same as the very one you've seen on the stage. She's always been playing versions of herself even with what sometimes seems like an aversion to herself. A great read - fun, light, but with some strong stories and refreshing points of view. Recommended.

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