A Little Bit Wicked – Kristin Chenoweth and Joni Rodgers [TSS]

Title: A Little Bit Wicked: Life, Love, and Faith in Stages
Author: Kristin Chenoweth and Joni Rodgers
ISBN: 9781416580553
Pages: 240
Release Date: April 14, 2009
Publisher: Touchstone
Genre: Memoir, Non-Fiction
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

From the dust jacket:

You might know her as a Tony Award-winning Broadway star, who originated the role of Galinda the Good Witch in the smash musical Wicked and won a Tony for 1999’s You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown. Or you may recognize her from her starring roles on TV — The West Wing, Pushing Daisies, Sesame Street…oh, and her Huge Hit Sitcom Kristin on NBC. (Huge hit. L.A. breast-implant huge. Ask either of the people who watched it.) Or maybe you saw her sexy spread in FHM magazine? Or her appearance on Pat Robertson’s The 700 Club? Kristin is a wonderful collection of contradictions — but everyone who’s ever met her remembers her as the little girl with the big voice. At four foot eleven, Kristin Chenoweth is an immense talent in a petite but powerful package.

In this lively, laugh-out-loud book, Kristin shares her journey from Oklahoma beauty queen to Broadway leading lady, reflecting on how faith and family have kept her grounded in the dysfunctional rodeo of show biz. The daughter of an engineer and a nurse, Kristin was singing in front of thousands at Baptist conventions by age twelve and winning beauty pageants by age twenty-two. (Well, actually she was second runner-up almost every freaking time. But, hey, she’s not bitter.) On her way to a career as a professional opera singer, she stopped in New York to visit a friend and went on a whim to an audition. Through a combination of talent, hard work, and (she’s quick to add) the grace of God, Kristin took Broadway by storm. But of course, into every storm, the occasional drizzle of disaster must fall.

Filled with wit, wisdom, and backstage insight, A Little Bit Wicked is long on love and short on sleep; it’s essential reading for Kristin’s legions of fans and an uplifting story for anyone seeking motivation to follow his or her dreams — over the rainbow and beyond.

I didn’t realize what a huge Kristin Chenoweth fan I am until I heard that she had a memoir coming out. I loved her on The West Wing, knew that she had an on-again, off-again relationship with one of my favorite TV writers, Aaron Sorkin, and knew that he based the character of Harriet Hayes from his short-lived but much talked about show Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip on Kristin. I would have given my right arm to see her in the role of Galinda/Glinda during the first run of Wicked on Broadway. I also absolutely loved her on the creatively adorable TV series Pushing Daisies (which sadly only ran for 2 seasons) and have her CD of Christmas songs, A Lovely Way To Spend Christmas. Additionally, she’s from Oklahoma, my home state. After that rundown, how did I not realize how much I love this woman before now??

This memoir is exactly what I imagine Kristin Chenoweth to be like; underneath the dust jacket, the book cover was bubble gum pink. The book is zany and fun; while it has its serious moments, Kristin’s wonderfully warm and kooky personality shines through every step of the way. She comes across as very honest – while she does talk about the highs of her life, she also discusses some of the lows. My favorite part of the book was Kristin’s amazing sense of humor.

This isn’t a tell-all book, full of juicy gossip and celebrity secrets (though she does discuss all her major experiences in show business). Instead, it’s a series of glimpses at Kristin’s life, a look of some of the important events that have gotten her to where she is today. I loved this aspect of A Little Bit Wicked; it wasn’t trashy or dirty or low. It was just very entertaining.

I also enjoyed Kristin’s discussion of her faith. Often I am turned off by religious talk because it seems preachy; I usually don’t like reading about it in books. But for some reason, I didn’t mind it in A Little Bit Wicked. Kristin’s genuineness made it clear that she wasn’t trying to proselytize. She also has a real sense of humor about her faith that I appreciate. The fact is I liked reading about Kristin’s faith because she spoke about it with such joy, but also was so open-minded.

A Little Bit Wicked isn’t a front-to-back solid memoir. Instead it’s told in fits and spurts, almost like having a conversation with Kristin. It makes the book really easy to read and helps to hold the reader’s attention for the entirety of the memoir. I just wish that Kristin would do an audiobook version of A Little Bit Wicked – it’d be amazing!

A Little Bit Wicked was an amazing read that I enjoyed very much. The question is whether someone who doesn’t really know much about Kristin Chenoweth would like this book. I think it would still make a great read, especially if you like celebrity memoirs or are curious about Kristin. I obviously love this book and highly recommend it to anyone who wants to know more about her!

A huge thank you to the publisher for sending me this book to review!

Comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    The audiobook is up on iTunes 🙂 Search for Kristin Chenoweth, should come up.

  2. Anonymous says:

    The audiobook is up on iTunes 🙂 Search for Kristin Chenoweth, should come up.

  3. Oh! This one is for sure going on my tbr list!!

  4. Oh! This one is for sure going on my tbr list!!

  5. I have been dying to get my hands on this one! It sounds wonderful, as I expected it to be, because well, she’s Kristen Chenoweth. Great review and thanks for telling us all about it.

  6. I have been dying to get my hands on this one! It sounds wonderful, as I expected it to be, because well, she’s Kristen Chenoweth. Great review and thanks for telling us all about it.

  7. This sounds like a fun book, even though I don’t think I’ve ever seen Kristin Chenoweth in anything. I don’t watch much TV.

  8. This sounds like a fun book, even though I don’t think I’ve ever seen Kristin Chenoweth in anything. I don’t watch much TV.

  9. I remember when you were reading this! It looks terrific and how can’t you love her?

  10. I remember when you were reading this! It looks terrific and how can’t you love her?

  11. I love Kristin Chenoweth. She seems like a genuinely happy person. Thanks for the review. I saw it at the Festival of Books but wasn’t sure if I wanted to purchase my own copy or just get it from the library.

  12. I love Kristin Chenoweth. She seems like a genuinely happy person. Thanks for the review. I saw it at the Festival of Books but wasn’t sure if I wanted to purchase my own copy or just get it from the library.

  13. I love her too! I’ve only seen her really on Pushing Daisies and on a couple of movies but I just love her personality. I’ve been wanting to read this because of that. Thanks for the review!

  14. I love her too! I’ve only seen her really on Pushing Daisies and on a couple of movies but I just love her personality. I’ve been wanting to read this because of that. Thanks for the review!

  15. I too loved her in Pushing Dasies and enjoy listening to her on my Wicked CD!

  16. I too loved her in Pushing Dasies and enjoy listening to her on my Wicked CD!

  17. Anonymous says:

    would it be appropriate for my 13 year old to read?

  18. Anonymous says:

    would it be appropriate for my 13 year old to read?

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