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A Paper Life | [Tatum O'Neal]

A Paper Life

At age 10, Tatum O'Neal became the youngest Oscar winner in history for her performance in the film classic Paper Moon. As the sidekick to her father, Ryan O'Neal, she became a fixture at the most glamorous Hollywood parties and counted celebrities among her childhood friends.
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Publisher's Summary

At age 10, Tatum O'Neal became the youngest Oscar winner in history for her performance in the film classic Paper Moon. As the sidekick to her father, Ryan O'Neal, she became a fixture at the most glamorous Hollywood parties and counted celebrities among her childhood friends.

But behind the glittering facade of Tatum's life lay heartbreak: abandonment, abuse, and neglect. Her alcoholic mother drifted in and out of her life. Her father grew increasingly punishing and distant, especially after moving in with his longtime love, Farrah Fawcett. By her late teens, Tatum had begun a perilous slide into self-destruction.

Then Tatum met the man who would become her husband: the explosive tennis great John McEnroe. They had three children in quick succession, followed by one of the messiest high-profile divorces on record. With the collapse of her marriage and no real family to turn to, Tatum succumbed to the demons of her past that would nearly kill her. Now she has emerged clean and sober, rediscovering herself as an actress, mother, and wonderfully vibrant woman in what she considers the prime of her life.

©2004 Tatum O'Neal; (P)2004 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"In this honest, disturbing memoir, O'Neal...reveals the behind-the-scenes story of her lonely, chaotic life." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (97 )
5 star
 (30)
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 (32)
3 star
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Overall
3.8 (47 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
3.3 (48 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (8)
Performance
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  •  
    Deb South San Francisco, CA, United States 01-18-11
    Deb South San Francisco, CA, United States 01-18-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    4
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    "started out strong, but ended weakly"

    a little over half way through it turned into a typical "everyone is wrong" and "poor me." although i stayed with it, i found my interest waning and found myself yelling at specific comments made by Tatum. i am looking forward to reading McEnroe's book now to find out his side of the story.

    the most interesting part of the book revolves around Paper Moon, and how she got there.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Prunella P. Victoria, British Columbia, Canada 05-25-13
    Prunella P. Victoria, British Columbia, Canada 05-25-13 Member Since 2011
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Revealing, in many ways."
    Would you try another book from Tatum O'Neal and/or Tatum O'Neal?

    Yes, I would. I was attracted to her honesty, or at least what I perceive to be her honesty, her willingness to be real. I did not find her tone blaming, just truthful.


    What did you like best about this story?

    She paints a very clear picture of the genetics of addiction.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Her narration was very strange, as other readers have commented, but I got used to it. This in itself was revealing, I thought. It reveals the fact that these are not all Tatum's words; the book was cowritten. But it also reveals that Ms. O'Neal is not out to score points. I heard the little girl in her voice and it was earnest and endearing. I couldn't imagine anyone else narrating this book.


    What else would you have wanted to know about Tatum O'Neal’s life?

    What happened next? But I suppose I have to read the next book!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Whitehouse, TX, United States 05-14-13
    Amazon Customer Whitehouse, TX, United States 05-14-13 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    60
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    28
    21
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    7
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    Performance
    Story
    "Poor Tatum"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    It was a good listen. This girl's life was hard from the time she was three. You feel for her, trying to escape her "genetic" short comings. The abuse is shocking.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Tatum. Mostly from her child aged movies.


    What three words best describe Tatum O'Neal’s voice?

    Smokey sass


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dawn TAMPA, FL, United States 09-02-12
    dawn TAMPA, FL, United States 09-02-12 Member Since 2012

    D

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    8
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Surprisingly poor performance. .."
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Sadly,I think if the book was read by someone elso other than Tatum it would have held my interest. I feel her performance was choppyand disjointed.


    Any additional comments?

    There was a alot of bashing of her father and John McEnroe, but her story is sad and her own. The story itself was interesting, but the performance made it difficult to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Renate 03-24-12
    Renate 03-24-12

    ren-200

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    7
    5
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    Story
    "Interesting insight into Tatum O'Neal"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes this was the first audiobook I have ever bought. It was a great start. I was impressed that it was spoken by Tatum O'Neal herself. Sad story but great her story has been told.
    I couldn't stop listening.


    Have you listened to any of Tatum O'Neal’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No but I will definitely be buying her other book.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Yes I felt sad for the O'Neal family that they were so dysfunctional.


    Any additional comments?

    I really enjoyed this book and will definitely be buying her other. Good luck to Tatum O'Neal

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    kathieSpat 02-29-12
    kathieSpat 02-29-12 Member Since 2008
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Love the book....BUT"
    Would you listen to A Paper Life again? Why?

    No, although I loved the book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Her story. That against all the odds she is still going strong and trying to love life and live clean. I admire her.


    How could the performance have been better?

    If it had been narrated by someone else.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Her perseverance throughout her life amazed me.


    Any additional comments?

    The book should not have been narrated by Tatum. It was very distracting the way she narrated. You could also tell she was reading it like a script. It would have been so much more enjoyable if narrated by someone else. I love Tatum and believe her story but she should stick to acting. Narrating a book and acting on screen are I believe two very different talents.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    sarah east balmain, Australia 01-10-12
    sarah east balmain, Australia 01-10-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
    ratings
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    16
    12
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    0
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    "Sad story, terrible narration."
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Seemed like she hadn't rehearsed before doing the narration. She sounds like a student forced to stand up in class and read a text she's never seen before. Was she unable to hear how bad this sounds or does she not care? Why didn't someone say something to her during the recording process? I just can't imagine any engineer allowing this kind of thing if the narrator was a non-famous person and not the author.

    It sounds like she keeps reading along, getting to the end of a line on the page, and thinking the sentence has ended, she's taking her breaths in the wrong places...it's shockingly bad for a professional actor to turn in something like this.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Tatum O'Neal’s performances?

    Not for the right reasons.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gina Wyckoff, NJ, United States 11-04-11
    Gina Wyckoff, NJ, United States 11-04-11
    ratings
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    1
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    "Tatum"

    This was my first audible and wasn't sure if I would enjoy the concept but thought I would try this book first. What I enjoyed most about it was actually hearing Tatum's voice as she told her thoughts and feelings of events in her life. I felt them as she said them and visualized it more than if someone else read it out loud or if I read the book myself..

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gibbons south bend, IN, United States 09-14-11
    gibbons south bend, IN, United States 09-14-11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
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    Story
    "Excellent "Read""

    For anyone who is old enough to have seen Paper Moon and has followed the O'Neil family throughout the decades, it is fascinating to hear the history through the eyes of Tatem as a child and a fascinating look into what goes on behind closed doors. I got through the book in two days. Excellent company for a long flight.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Monica 10-26-09
    Monica 10-26-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    100
    5
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    "I enjoyed it"

    I read the book when it first came out but the audio is better as Tatum's own voice brings it to life.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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