Handbook for An Unpredictable Life
How I Survived Sister Renata and My Crazy Mother, and Still Came Out Smiling (with Great Hair)Book - 2014
Oscar-nominated actress Rosie Perez’s never-before-told story of surviving a harrowing childhood and of how she found success—both in and out of the Hollywood limelight.
Rosie Perez first caught our attention with her fierce dance in the title sequence ofDo the Right Thing and has since defined herself as a funny and talented actress who broke boundaries for Latinas in the film industry. What most people would be surprised to learn is that the woman with the big, effervescent personality has a secret straight out of a Dickens novel. At the age of three, Rosie’s life was turned upside down when her mentally ill mother tore her away from the only family she knew and placed her in a Catholic children’s home in New York’s Westchester County. Thus began her crazily discombobulated childhood of being shuttled between “the Home,” where she and other kids suffered all manners of cruelty from nuns, and various relatives’ apartments in Brooklyn.
Many in her circumstances would have been defined by these harrowing experiences, but with the intense determination that became her trademark, Rosie overcame the odds and made an incredible life for herself. She brings her journey vividly to life on each page of this memoir—from the vibrant streets of Brooklyn to her turbulent years in the Catholic home, and finally to film and TV sets and the LA and New York City hip-hop scenes of the 1980s and ‘90s.
More than a page-turning read, Handbook for an Unpredictable Life is a story of survival. By turns heartbreaking and funny, it is ultimately the inspirational story of a woman who has found a hard-won place of strength and peace.
Baker & Taylor
The actress shares the story of her disadvantaged childhood and her successes in and out of the Hollywood limelight, tracing her relationship with the schizophrenic mother who relinquished her to a Catholic orphanage and the fierce sense of independence that inspired her career.
Writing in a conversational style accessible to all readers, actress and dancer Rosie Perez (Do the Right Thing, White Men Can't Jump) adds plenty of humor to offset this narrative of her difficult childhood with a mentally ill mother and her traumatic experiences in a children's home. She highlights the strength she gained from the family members who tried to protect her and shares her struggles with depression and PTSD. "Trying to get past your past sucks," says Perez, "but you will find yourself along the way, and I hope your hair looks fabulous while doing it!" The book is illustrated with b&w photos from the author's personal collection. Annotation ©2014 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (protoview.com)
An Oscar-nominated actress shares the previously untold story about her disadvantaged childhood and her successes in and out of the Hollywood limelight, tracing her relationship with the schizophrenic mother who relinquished her to a Catholic orphanage, the abuse she suffered in a series of homes and the fierce sense of independence that inspired her career.
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"And there was an order she brought instantly to the house that felt safe and light. Some of the girls didn't like her. Maybe it was because she was so sure of herself that they mistook that as arrogance. I think it was because she demanded the best from us constantly, in regards to our character and ability, without fear or intimidation--that's powerful." -Rosie of House Mother
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