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My Extraordinary Ordinary Life | [Sissy Spacek]

My Extraordinary Ordinary Life

In her delightful and moving memoir, Sissy Spacek writes about her idyllic, barefoot childhood in a small East Texas town, with the clarity and wisdom that comes from never losing sight of her roots. Descended from industrious Czech immigrants and threadbare southern gentility, she grew up a tomboy, tagging along with two older brothers and absorbing grace and grit from her remarkable parents, who taught her that she could do anything.
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Publisher's Summary

In her delightful and moving memoir, Sissy Spacek writes about her idyllic, barefoot childhood in a small East Texas town, with the clarity and wisdom that comes from never losing sight of her roots. Descended from industrious Czech immigrants and threadbare southern gentility, she grew up a tomboy, tagging along with two older brothers and absorbing grace and grit from her remarkable parents, who taught her that she could do anything. She also learned fearlessness in the wake of a family tragedy, the grief propelling her "like rocket fuel"; to follow her dreams of becoming a performer.

With a keen sense of humor and a big-hearted voice, she describes how she arrived in New York City one star-struck summer as a 17-year-old carrying a suitcase and two guitars; and how she built a career that has spanned four decades with films such as Carrie, Coal Miner's Daughter, 3 Women, and The Help. She details working with some of the great directors of our time, including Terrence Malick, Robert Altman, David Lynch, and Brian De Palma - who thought of her as a no-talent set decorator until he cast her as the lead in Carrie. She also reveals why, at the height of her fame, she and her family moved away from Los Angeles to a farm in rural Virginia.

Whether she's describing the terrors and joys of raising two talented, independent daughters, taking listeners behind the scenes on Oscar night, or meditating on the thrill of watching a pair of otters frolicking in her pond, Sissy Spacek's memoir is poignant and laugh-out-loud funny, plainspoken and utterly honest. My Extraordinary Ordinary Life is about what matters most: the exquisite worth of ordinary things, the simple pleasures of home and family, and the honest job of being right with the world. "If I get hit by a truck tomorrow," she writes, "I want to know I've returned my neighbor's cake pan."

©2012 Sissy Spacek (P)2012 Hyperion (packaging elements only)

What the Critics Say

"My Extraordinary Ordinary Life is the book version of Sissy: warm, heartfelt, and very real. Perhaps most remarkable is that Sissy's life-from the ordinary experiences of growing up in and raising a close-knit family to the extraordinary thrills of starring in some of the most iconic roles in Hollywood-unfolds as gracefully on the page as it does on the big screen and, as all of her readers will soon learn, in everyday life." (Kathryn Stockett, New York Times best-selling author of The Help)
"My Extraordinary Ordinary Life describes a remarkable woman's journey from a baton-twirling East Texas gal to an Academy-Award winning star. Sissy Spacek tells her story with warmth and grace, never straying far from the small-town roots that shaped her." (Jeannette Walls, best-selling author of The Glass Castle and Half Broke Horses)
"[A] warm narrative...Like a folk song, Spacek's storytelling is tender and unhurried." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (167 )
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4.3 (153 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Jim PLYMOUTH, WI, United States 12-03-12
    Jim PLYMOUTH, WI, United States 12-03-12
    ratings
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    "Not what I thought ..."
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Have the recording be in better quality.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    No reaction.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Sissy Spacek?

    Yes


    Was My Extraordinary Ordinary Life worth the listening time?

    Not really.


    Any additional comments?

    Almost Half the book was about her childhood in Texas, wasn't expecting that to be so much of the book. Was hoping for more about her movies career and less about her musical career.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 11-30-12
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    "Sissy Spacek writes and narrates best biography"
    Where does My Extraordinary Ordinary Life rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The best so far. Wish she would write and narrate more!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Sissy had a wonderful childhood in small town America growing up in the 50's and 60's. She captures thoughts and feelings that are good to be recorded and remembered.


    What about Sissy Spacek’s performance did you like?

    love her voice...sounds just like I expected....best one to tell her own story.


    Any additional comments?

    Thank you to the author for a great listen!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Geri-Ann Venice, CA, USA 02-22-13
    Geri-Ann Venice, CA, USA 02-22-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Spacek succeeded too well."

    Sissy Spacek is a major movie star who wanted to show how ordinary she is. (See the title.) After reading the book, I am impressed with how she has managed to maintain a fairly normal life -- long-term marriage, children, living a life outside of Hollywood. The problem is that I found the details of her ordinary life rather dull. She is a competent writer, but not a great one, so the ordinary details of her life are just not that interesting. Much of the book is about her family background, her childhood, her pets and her relatives and neighbors. The stories, the way they are told, would be of zero interest if they weren't about a movie star. I did enjoy hearing about the making of her movies -- the unordinary part of her life -- but that constituted no more than half the book, and probably a lot less. I also was not impressed with her performance as a reader. I know this may be an unfair criticism ... after all, she's the author talking about her own life! But she has a slow southern drawl; I kept wanting to tell her to speed it up. To sum it up, I liked Sissy Spacek, it was interesting hearing about her experiences making movies, but she succeeded too well in showing how "ordinary" her life is.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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