Julie Andrews’ legions of fans were beyond delighted when in she penned her 2008 memoir “Home: A Memoir of My Early Years,” which was a poignant reflection on her early life, her marriage to costume and set designer, Tony Walton, the birth of her daughter, Emma, and the call from Hollywood that changed her life. The book, which quickly became a New York Times bestseller, provided fans a glimpse into her life and left them wanting her to tell them more. A follow-up was promised, and fans have anxiously awaited the release of the memoir which came in late 2019. This week CCPL Great Reads is pleased to feature the newly arrived collection copy of this anticipated memoir entitled “Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years” by Julie Andrews.
Julie Andrews introduces “Home Work” with a brief overview of “Home” which perfectly sets the stage for readers who have not had the opportunity to read her first memoir yet. She then picks up with her arrival in Hollywood and the new adventure that she, her husband, Tony, and daughter Emma, embarked upon with the helpful guidance of Walt Disney, who months earlier had visited with Julie and Tony after a performance of “Camelot,” the Broadway show in which she was starring in the role of Queen Guenevere. It was during this visit that he told them about a combination live-action/animated musical film that he was planning based on the “Mary Poppins” books by P.L. Travers and then asked if Julie would consider playing the title role. While she was overwhelmed by the offer, she was certain telling him that she was newly pregnant would negate the possibility of her taking the role. She was astonished when he replied, “That’s OK. We’ll wait.” It was, of course, the role of Mary Poppins followed closely by that of Maria von Trapp in “The Sound of Music” that resulted in Julie’s meteoric rise to stardom.
In “Home Work,” which is co-authored by Julie’s daughter Emma Walton Hamilton, Andrews candidly describes her years in the film industry—from the incredible highs to the challenging lows. She also shares her personal story—the thrill of becoming a mother, the struggles and end of her first marriage, falling in love with Blake Edwards, and the challenges of creating a blended family after their marriage.
“Home Work” is beautifully written with Julie Andrews’ characteristic charm, humor, and candor that affords readers a personal glimpse into the life of one of the most beloved entertainers of all time. Highly recommended.
“Home Work” is available at the Calloway County Public Library in a variety of formats, including print, eBook, and eAudio. CCPL is located at 710 Main Street and online at www.callowaycountylibrary.org.