Mommie Dearest
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Mommie Dearest

3.55 of 5 stars 3.55  ·  rating details  ·  5,172 ratings  ·  231 reviews
With the 20th Anniversary Edition of Mommie Dearest, Christina Crawford becomes one of the only authors in publishing history to re-issue a number one best-seller. "The new edition is published as I intended it. More than 100 pages - mostly that delve into my adult relationship with Mother - that were left out of the original version are back in," said Ms. Crawford. "I've...more
Paperback, 327 pages
Published November 1st 1981 by Berkley Books (first published January 1st 1978)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Mommie Dearest, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Mommie Dearest

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details

I bought this for .50 cents at a thrift store. It's dirty and dog-eared physically and metaphysically and metaphorically and all others.

Christina Crawford is as cuntastic as they come. This is a sloppy 5th grade essay on Mommie's bad moods that miraculously made me sympathize more with Joan "The Craw Craw" than anything else (I too have a fondness for bleaching powders). It's not written for therapy, it's nowhere near "A Child Called It," and the selling point is all of the nasty little tidbits...more
Ok reading the reviews had me so upset. Not because people didnt like the book. Thats a matter of preference. But because the nerve of some people to choose sides as if they know either parties. That concerns me. People are abused everyday and they have so much support, but the second someone is abused by someone rich, famous, and beautiful; everyone wants to debate it and take the side of the popular. I dont know if Christina is telling the whole truth about her childhoold. But even if she fabr...more
What a ride! This book is completely insane. Which doesn't mean I don't believe Christina. I do. I have friends whose parents are drunks and I have friends whose parents are just plain nuts. This kind of crap really does happen. The emotional manipulation especially -- the child constantly reaching, constantly feeling that if she does one more thing or something a little better that longed-for love and acceptance from mom will finally come, and the shattering that occurs when one realizes it nev...more
Nov 06, 2008 Colleen rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who love crybaby stories
Recommended to Colleen by: No one
Written by a grown woman, the first of Joan Crawford's adopted children, the book reads like one big whine-a** 13yr old journal entry. Christina Crawford complains about how her mean mommie had loads of cash and didn't spoil her and her equally bratty brother, Chistopher, even more rotten than they already were. Funny how out of four adopted children growing up in the same house, two were bitter and two have happy memories of their childhood. I read this with an objective eye, what I saw was con...more
Kimberly Rahi

First let me start off by saying that I do not under any circumstances condone child abuse. With that being said,there are several contradictory statements in Christina Crawford's story.

For those unfamiliar with this book. It is a tell all from Joan Crawford's eldest adopted child, Christina. Christina speaks in depth about her mother's strict discipline which included: harsh chores, seclusion, and "being nearly beaten to death." Does anyone remember the cult classic movie "Mommie Dearest?" "NO...more
I grew up in the 80's and was irrationally obsessed with the movie Mommie Dearest; to this day, if I see it on TV, I have to stop what I'm doing and watch. Why the obsession about a pretty tragic story of a little girl who was abused? I have no idea, but I know I'm not alone.

As an adult, who loves bios of old Hollywood, I don't know why it took me a while to actually read the book, but I just did and I enjoyed (? - not sure if that's the right word) it. It delved deeper into Joan Crawford and Ch...more
This book taught me to never, ever, use wire hangers! o.O

I believe Christina's story. She was emotionally and physically abused by Joan Crawford. No doubt in my mind. The only reason Joan's twin daughters didn't talk was because they had "hush" money.

SurvivorSurvivor No Safe Place: The Legacy of Family Violence
Joan Crawford like many stars of her day had a carefully crafted image. I don't doubt much of this book, especially while reading "Not The Girl Nextdoor". What amazed me the most about this book was that Christina still came across as loving her mother very much even after enduring horrific abuse. Most children who are abused still love their parents which is something that puzzles me. I can understand the anger and outrage Joan's public felt after this unflattering portrayl was released, Joan l...more
Jun 24, 2009 Ronda rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: adults
I grew up watching the Joan Crawford movies, my parents were fans. When I saw this book out, I had to snap it up and read it.

It was a very good book even if the content was not only surprising but upsetting.

To know a child has been abused and not much was done to help her is sad.

To know someone is such a well respected woman and is doing the abusing and getting away with it, got away with it, was/is criminal.

I'm glad Christina wrote the book so all could see the truth about her mother. I hope it...more
Good movie, not so good book.

I don't doubt that even some of the more severe abuse took place, but that really isn't the issue. The real abuse is buried under chapters and chapters of boring whining. It's harder to take the real abuse seriously when the author is complaining about every single thing her mother ever said and did for the duration of her life.

At one point she says her mother is treating her brother "hatefully" because he isn't allowed to trample the flowers in the flower beds while...more
Rebecca  Porter
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.

Some great scenes in this book that show Joanie to be the crazy broad we all hope she actually was. However in a good chunk of the book Christina Darling bores us with her 'acting' career and life. However she did come up with more gems than Bette Davis's daughter.....Bette was mainly just scathing and difficult.

I saw the movie before I read the book so in my mind Faye Dunaway is Crazy ol' Joan. But if you only want to read the book or watch the movie, watch the movie. The movie compacts all the...more
Jim Giddens
Narrative nonfiction, biography of Joan Crawford, autobiography of Christina Crawford, exposé of the dysfunctional family life of a famous person. This book also accounts the death of Joan Crawford as well as the three memorial services held for her family, her business associates, and her movie and television associates.

"From her throne in the eye of the hurricane, brandishing her wand of obsession, rules the queen of chaos herself: Mommie Dearest." Christina Crawford tells of the dysfunctional...more
Why did I reread this stinker? Because I wanted to read Christina Crawford's book Survivor, but this was all they had at the library. I could not be more sympathetic toward the author (or anyone with a schizophrenogenic parent or who experienced abuse of any kind as a child). However, this book is bad. I'm kind of thinking never mind about reading Survivor.
I had a friend who adored the movie so I decided to read the book. I'm a big fan of old Hollywood but I do not like Joan Crawford. I don't think she was pretty, talented, or even that good of a person so I thought I'd like this book. However it was nothing but TRASH.
This girl is just complaining about ridiculous things. For example:

- Fans would send her oodles of presents for Christmas and Joan would let her keep one and donate the others. She complains about that. Joan was trying not to have h...more
I'd watched the movie several times and honestly, I laughed at most of the over the top scenes. The whole issue of child abuse was lost on me in the movie. When Joan Crawford lays into Christina over the wire hangers I tried to figure how an 8 year old got a hold of wire hangers. It wasn't like she could run to the store and buy them.

the book clarifies that -- they came from the cleaners that way. Other scenes that came across as humorous and turned the movie Mommie Dearest into a cult classic m...more
This book was awesome...definitely a HUGE insight to Ms Joan Crawford..I'd been searching for an affordable copy of this book for 3 years through my local trade in friend happened to find it before me & was kind enough to let me read it first.
The movie, follows pretty closely to book...with exceptions to the extra children that were left out of movie.
I think Ms Joan Crawford was an interesting and savvy business woman but she also had a lot of personal demons that she carrie...more
Jun 01, 2014 Vanessa marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition

Obviously, a lot has been said about this book and consequently many have weighed in and chosen sides. It's difficult to judge the veracity of Christina's heartbreaking story since so many others have disputed it. In fact, I have read other Crawford biographies whose authors directly attack Christina for defaming her ultra glamorous, Oscar-winning mother.

It seems all that can be said for certain is that mother and daughter had, at the very least, a troubled relationship and one can readily belie...more
I had somehow never gotten around to reading a book that I knew was an "icon" in the genre it seemed to create (the grown-child-tell-all-about-abuse-from-mom-or-dad book). Some scattered moments of great narrative (e.g., opening chapter at the funeral home, description of "night raids," etc.) mixed in with less inspired writing -- but always a compelling tale. Even if it is true (but yet unproven) that Christina Crawford embellished the story (as she is accused), this recounting of parental abus...more
Barbara Cochrane
Very good book, if I remember correctly. It has been many years since I read this book.
I do remember being glued to it and having a bit of trouble reconciling this cruel person to the glamorous movie star I had seen on screen. I wondered why she ever adopted children if she was going to be so cruel.

The younger Ms. Crawford had a lot of anger when she wrote this book and considering she waited until her mother was dead to write it, I question some of the sensational events in the book. What lend...more
I read this when I was a kid during the summer at my father's house. It made... an impression. One time my step-mother took me along on a nosey day of looking at mansions for sale and we got to go inside the house where most of this book takes place.
Well that was a ride. The writing is not the best, clearly a work of a memoir by someone without a great deal of skill in storytelling. That being said the story in and of itself is provocative, showing a very different and darker side to the Hollywood days of the old grand dames of acting. The veracity of the tale to me is not in question as it clearly shows that as a child and young adult this woman survived and incredibly mentally abusive and taxing family life. It was compelling and interest...more
Trashy + poorly written, and I couldn't put it down. And you thought your childhood was rough....
Read many years ago. Hated wire hangers ever since.
I saw the movie, starring Faye Dunaway as Joan Crawford, a couple years ago for the first time. I loved the movie, and I loved Dunaway's portrayal. I watched the movie and was horrified that someone who was so well known and world-renowned as an actress could have been so abusive, so violent towards her children. I looked up stories revolving around Christina's claims, which I believed wholeheartedly up until I started to read more about it. I found that there is quite a lot of people who have d...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I have always been a fan of Mommie Dearest the original movie. The movie was very intense and something you’d never forget. So anyhow, that brings me to this review. I can’t really remember where I was but I was somewhere browsing through the books and I came across this book. It didn't have a cover on it but it was in great condition. I had already seen the movie so I knew I had to get this book. The excitement was great when I found this book! Being able to read into the life of Christina Craw...more
Oct 14, 2011 Alexander rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of celebrity tell-alls, shocking novels, family dynamics books, and "The Valley of the Dolls"
Ok, so where do I begin? First, this book is not just some gossip-queen purely-for-entertainment trash novel a la Valley of the Dolls (which happens to be a favorite of mine also). Sure, the book is full of stories of mental, verbal, and physical abuse, raging alcoholism, bipolar obsessive compulsion, and even allegations of lesbianism. But one of the best facets of the book is that it is also somewhat of a psychological novel. Christina goes through great pains not only describing the events an...more
This book is written by Christina Crawford the daughter of Joan Crawford. I am not really sure what brought me to want to read this book, guess I needed to read a biography since I hadn't in awhile. Probably, not the best biography/auto biography book to go back to the genre on. I am going to go back and read a happish chick lit book now and will come back to biographies again soon.

Christian wrote this book and I think it is from just the perceptive of what she thought and saw with little backgr...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
The book or the film? 1 12 Nov 27, 2012 02:29PM  
  • Elvis and Me
  • Call Me Anna: The Autobiography of Patty Duke
  • Natasha: The Biography of Natalie Wood
  • Loretta Lynn: Coal Miner's Daughter
  • By Myself
  • What Falls Away: A Memoir
  • The Movies, Mr. Griffith, And Me
  • Marlene Dietrich by Her Daughter
  • Garbo
  • I, Tina
  • Ava: My Story
  • It's Always Something
  • The Million Dollar Mermaid
  • Bombshell: The Life and Death of Jean Harlow
  • Little Girl Lost
  • Love, Lucy
  • My Story
  • Child Star
Christina Crawford is the adopted daughter of movie star Joan Crawford. She is best known for her contorversial book "Mommie Dearest", about her abusive childhood in Hollywood.
More about Christina Crawford...
Black Widow Survivor No Safe Place Daughters of the Inquisition: Medieval Madness: Origins and Aftermaths

Share This Book