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Home: A Memoir of My Early Years

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  10,882 ratings  ·  1,389 reviews
Since her first appearance on screen in Mary Poppins, Julie Andrews has played a series of memorable roles that have endeared her to generations. But she has never told the story of her life before fame. Until now.

In Home: A Memoir of My Early Years, Julie takes her readers on a warm, moving, and often humorous journey from a difficult upbringing in war-torn Britain to the

Hardcover, 339 pages
Published April 1st 2008 by Hachette Books (first published January 1st 2008)
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Average rating 3.96  · 
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 ·  10,882 ratings  ·  1,389 reviews

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Mar 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
I'm not sure what I expected from this memoir. Ok, actually, I do. I expected to hear about how Miss Andrews emerged from a well-to-do family well-mannered and with expensive training to become the success that she has been. Why did I think this? Because when I was young, Julie Andrews was one of the two people who epitomized "class" in my mind. And I suppose quite naturally, I thought that came from a very good upbringing and high social status.

I've been proven wrong. I was surprised to find
Mike (the Paladin)
Mar 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
In 1967 I was 15 years old and I fell in love with Julie Andrews. However, due to the facts that there was an almost 17 year age difference and Ms. Andrews was unaware of the situation my love remained unrequited. Eventually I did recover from my broken heart and had to admit to myself that I was quite likely not the first 15 year old to fall in love with someone from (what was then called) the "Silver Screen" (though to be honest in the years since I suspect it has become more common for 15 ...more
Ashley Daviau
Feb 12, 2017 rated it did not like it
I had high hopes for this book going into it but sadly it didn't live up to my expectations. From start to finish it completely failed to capture my interest and quite honestly, it's a bloody miracle that I managed to finish it. I found it extremely dry and dull and I was battling the urge to call it quits the whole way through!
Oct 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
* I audiobook-ed this one and it's actually narrated by the wonderful Julie Andrews herself which made this entire experience so much better *

This is a title I picked up entirely on a whim of seeing it advertised on the Audible site. I have always loved Julie Andrews and she has always inspired and enchanted audiences far and wide. However, most people (myself included) know little about her upbringing and her early life before fame and this read is a retelling in her own words of exactly what
Dec 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
Four stars: because I'm a life-long fan of Julie Andrews I "really liked" reading through the details of her early life.

Andrews' tawdry upbringing (or rather, her being raised by an oft-tawdry couple, her "Mum" and step-dad Ted Andrews) is given just enough description to paint a picture but it stops short of drowning the reader in goo. And one cannot help but think that perhaps Andrews developed that slightly reserved, wholesome, and modest persona -- clearly manifest here -- because of this
Callie Rose Tyler

This book covers a relatively short period of Julie Andrews' life, basically her childhood through her late/mid twenties with a pretty lengthily look at her ancestry (I think she starts with her maternal great-grandmother!) That means no dancing on the rooftops of London...

No frolicking through the hills of Austria...

There was a nice bit towards the end where she talks about meeting Walt Disney and him offering her the part of Mary Poppins. She talks about spending the day at the races with
Tracy Miller
May 21, 2008 rated it it was ok
I got this book from the library because I thought it would be fun to learn more about Julie Andrews. I wondered how she got started, etc. And her persona is so graceful, calm and assured - I wanted to see behind it a bit.

The problem don't really. There was just no emotion in it and I just don't feel like a got a lot of insight into her. She did share quite a bit about her difficult childhood. But she shared it with exactly the same tone and pacing and matter-of-factness that she used
May 31, 2008 rated it liked it
An avid admirer of the best voice on Broadway (and in movie musicals), I couldn't wait to crack open this book after being on the wait list for weeks. However, after reading this pleasant memoir, I closed the book with many more questions about what makes Julie Andrews tick than I had before I finished the first chapter. The strength in this easy read are the few times that Andrews delivers wonderful "Broadway in the making" tales of working opposite such greats as Rex Harrison and Richard ...more
Allison Parker
Nov 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult, memoir, audiobook
If you think listening to Julie Andrews describe the gardens, cozy interiors, and dusty smelling theaters of her youth sounds like a grand old time, have I got the audiobook for you.

If you DO NOT think listening to Julie Andrews describe the gardens, cozy interiors, and dusty smelling theaters of her youth sounds like a grand old time, maybe give it a chance anyway.

Julie Andrews' memoir of her childhood, adolescence, and early career in Broadway is warmly and fondly remembered and told. The
Jan 22, 2009 rated it really liked it
A spoonful of Julie helps the medicine go down! An entertaining and interesting read.
I really knew nothing about Julie Andrews before reading this book. I'd seen her musicals and a few of her movies and that was about it.
In this memoir Andrews tells the story of her early life going from a young vaudeville star in England to a Broadway celebrity.
For the most part, I thought it was an interesting book. While the book was written with the grace and dignity that Andrews has come to be known for I found it interesting to learn that she might not be as squeaky clean as the image she
Lovely, so very interesting! I had no idea she had such a rough life--she's so calm and classy that you'd never guess she ever went through anything tough, or at least never went through it with anything but aplomb. It was kind of shocking to realize she was once a little girl who cried over boys and agonized over her appearance and how her peers thought of her. I mean, intellectually I know that everyone was a child once, but it didn't really sink in until I was actually reading it. I only had ...more
Feb 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir
I would give this book a 4.5. I have always been a fan of Julie Andrews. This memoir is from her birth to mid twenties. She covers her sometimes difficult childhood and her career as a singer on radio and stage from age 12. Her work on stage starring in plays. I especially liked it when she talked about being in My Fair Lady. she ends the book with her on a plane off to film the movie Mary Poppins. I liked that I got to learn more about this talented lady. I just wish she could have added some ...more
Jul 07, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
She may not be able to write but she's endearing. I found this in a bargain bin and feel it was worth it, and it's especially interesting if you happen to be familiar with the musicals -- this early-years memoir focuses on her lonely, difficult childhood, an eye-opener for me, and the two plays My Fair Lady and Camelot, which I could still star in right now if I'd (ahem) had the talent and we were to knock off 30-40 yrs. For those who care as I do, the memoir's valuable because she discusses the ...more
3.5 stars
(*** not dure what percentage we stopped lutenist at because the audio book version on GoodReads only shows it has having 13 pages.)

This was a great book. It was so nice to hear about Julie Andrews' childhood from her own lips instead of it being written by someone else who did a lot of the research. It was enlightening to hear her take on what she remembers of her experiences with World War II because she was still pretty young at the time.
Mar 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the interesting and incredibly detailed view of Julie Andrews' early years prior to her fame. With her pristine image, I never would have guessed at the kind of upbringing she had and the challenges she faced. She was very open with sharing her feelings, thoughts and fears, which made her relatable despite her immense fame. However, the book ended very abruptly with no real "conclusion" and left me wanting more.
Jul 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoirs
Interesting account of Julie Andrews' early years. Often we think of celebrities as having everything handed to them. When we find out their lives weren't always the easiest it humanizes them and makes them more accessible to us.
Jan 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book, I believe more so because I listened to Julie Andrews reading it herself. Such a fascinating background from a wonderful actress/singer!
Oct 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

Even though I cannot honestly say that this was a consistently engaging and fun memoir, I still found it well-written and informative. I would recommend it to Julie Andrews fans who want to know more about her childhood years and theater career.
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
This lady is one class act! She is the consummate professional. I ran across the talking book at the library. When I saw that it was read by the author I had to give it a try. I do so love her voice. This is one that really works for audio, because she's telling her own story and because she's an excellent "reader," with all her experience in the field. If you listen to the audio version, be sure to slip disk one into your computer and look at the great photos.

My two favorite parts of this
Tabitha Vohn
Dec 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: being-nosy
Julie Andrews is one of the few celebrities that I'd shed happy tears if I ever met them. The Sound of Music (especially) and Mary Poppins are firmly cemented, nostalgic elements of my childhood, and I've also enjoyed Andrews in the other films I've seen her in. I own two of her Christmas albums and ringing in the holidays with her beautiful voice is always a pleasure.

All that being said, it was lovely to read about her upbringing and rise to stardom. The account of her family life is
Home: A Memoir of My Early Years

I Picked Up This Book Because: Saw it in the library and was curious.

The Story:

This depicts Julie’s life up until she heads to LA to film Mary Poppins. I must say I was disappointed not to get the details of her time on set of Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music as these were the two titles I was most familiar but I learned so much about her life prior that honestly there was no room for much more.

Julie was born with show business in her bones. I am not
Linda Klager
Apr 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a very well written book. I cannot imagine being a child and being exposed to World War II in England. It must have been very difficult to have heard the bombs exploding and having to rush to safety - Oh, My!

Julie loved her Dad. I loved the relationship that she had with him. Julie loved "home". What a good title for this book because she was always looking forward to going home when she was away from her roots.

Julie met so many people in her lifetime. This book is only about her early
Adam Shields
Feb 16, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short review: This was a near perfect audiobook. The narration by Julie Andrews could not have been better. The restrained but useful additions of some of her music as transition was very good (something I don't normally like.)

But overall it was just a very charming story of a humble and gracious woman. It only goes through the birth of her first child (just before filming of Mary Poppins) so there is a lot of story left to fill in.

I am really surprised how much I enjoyed this book.

Fully review
Jul 24, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography
Well, who knew? I always liked Julie Andrews, always assumed she was from prominence. Her voice, unbelievable! Here she describes her tumultous childhood and a love/hate relationship with her mother and an abusive step father. To me she's always exuded grace and good breeding. Come to find out, the stage was her teacher! What a rocky start and from the school of hard knocks at that! Good reading!
Jan 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
I was surprised at how much I liked this book. I mean, I like Julie Andrews as much as the next person but who knew she was so interesting? I love hearing how great people become great. She is such a real person and so accessible. Good writing, too. Recommended for people who like memoirs and/or theater.
This covered a LOT of Julie Andrews' early life. From growing up with performing parents to becoming a star herself. A lot of it bored me though. I'm not a crazy Julie Andrews fan. I don't even know why I purchased it? It was fine. Where's the "Middle Years" book? lol.
Apr 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
To many people, Julie Andrews is a voice of class and distinction. So it’s fun to learn that she was the product of her mom’s first, bad and short marriage. She also moved around a lot, shuttled about by World War II and her mother’s second and third marriages, including the affair in between. Andrews made her bedroom in a storage room below a street, and she fended off a slightly creepy alcoholic who became her stepfather. She lost touch with siblings. Artists often come from ugly, painful ...more
Oct 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Back to review this one after reading and reviewing book #2. Pretty revealing tale of a difficult childhood that included surviving WWII London, going to work at a young age and dealing with a dysfunctional family. A surprising start for the elegant Ms Andrews. She also tells tales about her start on Broadway. Good storytelling that doesn’t get bogged down in too much minutiae.
Ghost of the Library
I dont think I've read, at least in more recent years, a book of memoirs by a author more quintessentially British that the talented Julie Andrews.
What she shares with the reader here, should one wish to give this a try, is a family history of sorts, from childhood to the moment where she leaves for Hollywood and Mary Poppins.
What strikes me most however isn't the amusing (and sometimes delightfully ladylike) way in which she shares her memories, but the restraint, the control, the manners and
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Dame Julie Elizabeth Andrews Edwards, DBE is an award-winning English actress, singer, author and cultural icon. She is the recipient of Golden Globe, Emmy, Grammy, BAFTA, People's Choice Award, Theatre World Award, Screen Actors Guild and Academy Award honours. Andrews rose to prominence after starring in Broadway musicals such as My Fair Lady and Camelot, as well as musical films like Mary ...more
“Once in a while I experience an emotion onstage that is so gut-wrenching, so heart-stopping, that I could weep with gratitude and joy. The feeling catches and magnifies so rapidly that it threatens to engulf me.” 37 likes
“A rose lay open in full bloom
and, looking from my garden room,
I watched the sun-baked flower fill with rain.
It seemed so fragile,
resting there,
and such a silence filled the air,
the beauty of the moment caused me pain.
"What more?" I thought. "There must be more."
As if in answer then, I saw
one weighty drop that caused my rose to fall.
It trembled, then cascaded down
to earth just staining gentle brown
and, since then, I've felt different.
That's all.”
More quotes…