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A Life in Parts

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  11,196 ratings  ·  1,532 reviews
A poignant, intimate, funny, inspiring memoir—both a coming-of-age story and a meditation on creativity, devotion, and craft—from Bryan Cranston, beloved and acclaimed star of one of history’s most successful TV shows, Breaking Bad.

Bryan Cranston landed his first role at seven, when his father cast him in a United Way commercial. Acting was clearly the boy’s destiny, until
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Hardcover, 271 pages
Published October 11th 2016 by Scribner
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Jason Koivu I'm in the middle of listening to it and it's fantastic! I prefer to listen to memoirs if they're read by the author. No, not everyone's a good…moreI'm in the middle of listening to it and it's fantastic! I prefer to listen to memoirs if they're read by the author. No, not everyone's a good reader, but there's something about hearing their own words in their own voice. If it's an autobio by a comedian, I usually won't bother reading it unless I can find it in audio format with them as the narrator. (less)

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4.17  · 
Rating details
 ·  11,196 ratings  ·  1,532 reviews


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Donna Ho Shing
Oct 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Take notes Tina Fey, Mindy Kaling and the rest of you famous people writing memoirs. This is how it's done.
Scratch that.
Bow down people of earth. BOW DOWN! Walter White still reigns!
Bravo Bryan Cranston. BRAVO! Exceptional!
As far as celebrity memoirs go this book is a solid 5 stars.*

Can someone please take this iPad from me real quick because I'm about to go on and on about the genius that is Bryan Cranston and one of the greatest t.v. shows of all time- Breaking Bad- and when I start babblin
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Andrew Smith
I was, I think, unaware of Cranston until my son encouraged me to watch the opening episode of Breaking Bad. I was instantly hooked and watched the whole thing - all 62 episodes - in the course of the next month or so. I was captivated by its strange but compelling storyline and I found the performance of Cranston completely spellbinding. The character he played, chemistry teacher turned drug lord Walter White, was a work of genius and the way the plot was set out gave full reign to his skills. ...more
Mischenko
Jan 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Please visit www.readrantrockandroll.com to see this review and others.

A Life in Parts, by Bryan Cranston is a memoir about the author.

I really like Bryan Cranston and chose to read this so I could learn more about him, other than the parts he's played in movies and TV. I absolutely loved it. I love the way it's written because it kept my attention, stayed interesting, and went through parts of his childhood and early career.

There are many interesting things about him and experiences he had th
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Karen
Oct 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was expecting that Bryan Cranston’s life would be interesting or there wouldn’t have been an autobiography. What I was not expecting was that this man who I loved as Walter White in Breaking Bad, is incredibly accomplished and totally committed to his family and profession. Laser focused, intelligent, creative, very funny, mischief making and at times downright crazy, Bryan has lived his life with gusto, facing its hard knocks and highs head on. There seems to be no obstacle too great if Bryan ...more
Jenny Bunting
Oct 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook
This was hands down the best celebrity memoir I’ve listened to.

My only real critique was that it ended abruptly and I would’ve preferred a more tidy ending. I can forgive it since the rest of the book is superb and Cranston is such a strong, great narrator.

I highly recommend going the audiobook route for this. I assume it would be great in print but the audiobook is the only way to go, in my opinion.
Jason Koivu
Mar 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
That was really good. I mean really good! I knew I was going to enjoy it, because I'm a Brian Cranston/Breaking Bad fan, but this was exceptional.

Acclaimed actor Brian Cranston is a surprisingly good storyteller and the man has some stories to tell! I found this online in audiobook form with him doing the reading and that, imo, is the best way to read an autobiography. Who better to relate their life story than the person who lived it? Sure, some people absolutely suck at reading and shouldn't
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Michael Finocchiaro
I watched Breaking Bad from when Season 2 aired and was absolutely addicted to it. In A Life in Parts, the actor Bryan Cranston who played Walter White gives us his autobiography as a series of parts - Son, Husband, etc. - that he played in both this personal and professional lives. I admit I was impatient for more goods on Breaking Bad and had to wait for almost 200 pages to get it, and perhaps I am being unfair with a 3 or 3.5 star rating. His writing is alright - it is certainly very honest - ...more
Emma
Mar 20, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible
3.5 stars

I should have taken more note of the title: a life in parts. These parts being, of course, the various roles Bryan Cranston throughout his long career and the means by which he frames his life story in this book. Life many, I hadn't even heard of him before becoming mesmerised by his portrayal of Walter White in Breaking Bad. The show and the transformation of character played so well by Cranston was unlike anything i'd seen before. It's what made me wonder about the man behind the mask
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Katie B
Sep 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

As far as celebrity memoirs go this is a pretty decent read. It does feel like this was an honest attempt to reflect on his life even if it meant sharing memories that don't always paint him in the best light rather than just a fluffy, lighthearted attempt to make money off his fans. The first third of the book is devoted to his childhood growing up in California. His parents split up and for quite awhile he was estranged from his father. His mother turned to alcohol and ended up shippi
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Diana
Jan 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
UPDATE after reread after watching Breaking Bad:

Listening to this book the first time definitely made me want to watch the series. I waited for a while to allow myself to forget anything in this book about the show, which is kind of a lot of stuff. When I felt ready, I started watching Breaking Bad and was immediately hooked. I can definitely understand all the hype surrounding it.

This time while listening to the audio book it was a lot more fun to listen to the Walt and Heisenberg chapters and
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Alex
Oct 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Life in Parts is a memoir about Bryan Cranston. The first time I saw Bryan Cranston act was in Malcolm in the Middle. Actually, that is somewhat a lie. Did you know he played many of the voices on the Power Rangers? I loved the Power Rangers! Of course I was the Pink or Yellow Ranger. I should say the first time I noticed Bryan Cranston was in the Malcolm in the Middle. He is forever Hal. I know he did an amazing job as Walter White, but I love Hal. Every time I see him in tighty whities I gig ...more
Gabby
4.5 stars
Wow. This is easily the best celebrity memoir I've ever listened to. Bryan Cranston has been one of my favorite actors since I first watched Breaking Bad. Breaking Bad is my all time favorite show and I've seen every episode at least 5 times, and it will always be my favorite show, and I absolutely love Bryan Cranston as Walter White. Ever since I fell in love with Breaking Bad I have followed Bryan Cranston's career, and he has become one of my favorite humans on the planet. I adore hi
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Jack Chaucer
Jan 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I don't usually read memoirs, but as a huge fan of Bryan Cranston as Walter White/Heisenberg in AMC's hit show, "Breaking Bad," how could I resist? Fascinating life story of an actor who cares so much about the work. His upbringing was not very pleasant, but he rose above it, learned from his parents' mistakes and, as he put it, let acting become his salvation. This is an interesting and inspiring read. Highly recommend, especially to "Breaking Bad" fans. It was fun to get his inside insights on ...more
Sonja Arlow
If you are a die-hard Bryan Cranston fan then I think you will be more than satisfied with this book, if you only have a passing interest because you liked him in Breaking Bad you may be left wanting more.

This was an easy listen and I was glad to see that some of the stories I heard him tell on the Graham Norton show made it into this book as they were quite funny.

You learn a lot about the process an actor goes through to prepare for a role, the politics of the industry and how to handle rejecti
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Rose
Jul 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
I love this guy. A lot of people do but many of them only got to know him as Walter White aka Heisenberg. I loved him in that role also but he had me when he played Hal, the dad on Malcolm in the Middle. It was one of my favorite sitcoms and he had what seemed to be the most enjoyable role ever to act in.

I don’t usually care much for autobiographies but this was quite well done. He discusses his life growing up. How he got into acting. The roles he had. His relationships as an adult. He’s had a
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Kristina
Sep 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
This was a pretty good memoir--it doesn't go very deep but it was still an enjoyable read. I was hoping for way more behind the scenes stories and anecdotes about Cranston's experience on Breaking Bad, but, all in all, I'd definitely recommend this book.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a copy of this in exchange for an honest review.
Dorie  - Traveling Sister :)
Aug 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir
This is a well written, entertaining memoir, from Mr. Cranston who has quite a story to tell. I first became a fan from his “Breaking Bad” series which once I started watching just couldn’t stop. I watched compulsively in spite of the deterioration of the “good guy”, Mr. White, a high school math teacher, played by Cranston.

The actor, like so many others, was not an overnight success. He went through some troubled times with his family, his actor father who never made it big, and they were forev
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Lance Carney
May 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My kids were hooked on Malcolm in the Middle when I discovered Bryan Cranston. I thought he was hilarious as Hal. Then my son got us to watch Breaking Bad. Wow! What range. When my daughter moved to Los Angeles and Bryan Cranston was scheduled to appear at the Los Angeles Library, she got us signed copies of his autobiography.

The book is just like watching Bryan Cranston on screen; one minute it is hilarious, the next heart-wrenching. He lays it all out in easy prose - his life told through the
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Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast)
The thing that enchanted me so much about this book, and the reason I'm giving it the highest a four star rating can be before it becomes one of my rare and coveted fives, was the way Bryan Cranston told his stories—or, more accurately, the ways he didn't.

In theory, it isn't hard to write a memoir, but in practise it's got to be difficult. Not only do you have to tell your life's story clearly and honestly, but it has to be readable and preferably enjoyable. You can't be didactic, or else the re
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Erin Dunn
Oct 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
http://angelerin.blogspot.com/2016/10...

Thank you to Edelweiss for provding a free ebook copy of A Life in Parts By: Bryan Cranston in exchange for an honest review.

Short Review Summary:
I loved learning more about Cranston and his life.

Breaking Bad is one of my all time favorite shows. I love the show a lot and personally I think that Bryan Cranston did a magnificent job in his role as Walter White. Also, Walter White is one of my all time favorite characters. I've seen Cranston in a few othe
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TL
Dec 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read mostly through Overdrive app, last part via hardback copy (from page 208 till the end)
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Love Bryan Cranston more as a human being :)

Funny how you see someone in a few things... trailer for a movie or TV show, interview where they mention past things perhaps and somehow your brain doesn't connect it all together the way it should... probly just distracted, or maybe your memory sucks ;-P.

Bryan Cranston was another one of those people I had heard of (who hasn't at least heard of Breaking Bad
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JanB
Nov 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
Celebrity memoirs aren't usually a genre I'm drawn to but this one has great reviews and the audio is read by the author. I'm a huge fan of Bryan Cranston's work, especially his role as Walter White in Breaking Bad. The thought of being read to by Walter (haha) on a recent car trip was appealing and I wasn't disappointed. The book is well-written, amusing, and occasionally heartbreaking.

Thankfully, this wasn't a celebrity tell-all, but a look back on an interesting and varied life and career. T
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Ashley V
Sep 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Important Note: This book does contain some pretty major Breaking Bad spoilers so if you haven't yet watched/finished the show and still intend to, hold off on reading this book.

As far as celebrity memoirs go, this has become one of my favourites. Bryan Cranston, most notably of Breaking Bad fame, details his life as a series of "parts" he's played both onscreen and off. Let me tell you, he could give the Dos Equis guy a run for his money as the most interesting man in the world. From playing on
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Michelle
Until Breaking Bad, I hadn't watched Bryan Cranston in any TV show. But this performance, and subsequent elevated fame from Breaking Bad made me aware of who he was. Like millions of other fans, I loved this show.

This autobiography was at times entertaining, at times sad, and at times cringe-worthy. Particularly during his early years up until his mid-20's, Bryan's off-camera life was filled with drama. Sometimes I found myself wondering "could one person possibly have this much going on?" -- dy
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Paul
Feb 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bios
After tearing through A Life in Parts in two days, I feel like I sat down and had a great conversation with a good friend.

Like most right-thinking people, I loved Cranston in both Malcolm in the Middle and Breaking Bad; I also caught a great interview with him publicizing this book on NPR's "Fresh Air," and although I typically don't enjoy biographies, and especially don't enjoy autobiographies, I figured this would be pretty good and grabbed it when I saw it on the library shelf.

I was right! C
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Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)
Funny enough, the only way I'm familiar with Bryan Cranston is through Breaking Bad. I didn't watch Malcolm in the Middle, although he makes me want to watch that and numerous TV shows. The only other thing I've watched with him in it was The Infiltrator, and that was only a few weeks ago that I watched that. So, this book was more like how I was with The Bassoon King: My Life in Art, Faith, and Idiocy. Like the one thing they were in and here I am reading their memoir.

But, this was interesting.
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Raeleen Lemay
Jan 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
This was such a great audiobook! I loved learning about Bryan Cranston's early life, as well as the trials and tribulations that he faced in the beginning of his acting career. I love how he fought to break out of the "goofy dad" roles in order to be Walter White, and how he spoke about his success and fame with complete modesty and honesty. This book just made me love him even more than I already did!

I really want to re-watch Breaking Bad after listening to this, which also reminded me to warn
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Malcolm Everett
Feb 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir

I am floored by the vibrancy of this memoir.

The title A Life in Parts can be interpreted to mean “parts” as in “pieces,” vignettes of a life well-lived, but it more likely refers to the “roles” Cranston has played throughout his life that are used to divide the memoir into chapters—paperboy, security guard, minister, explorer, son, husband, father, and, of course, actor. He explores all the small and large moments that shaped him as a person and an artist, reflecting on his own philosophy about
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Kim
Jun 22, 2019 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars
Jennifer Rayment
Mar 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Read this a while ago, but cannot find my notes I took while reading. So please take this review in strides. Thoroughly enjoyed. An intriguing honest look into the life of a working actor who worked hard, is a decent chap and got the role of a lifetime. Have always been interested in watching Breaking Bad and now have a feeling I will be binge watching it after I get caught up on my book reviews. Appreciated his honesty and his dry sense of humour. While reading this you will feel like you are j ...more
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Bryan Lee Cranston is an American actor, comedian, stage actor, voice actor, screenwriter, director and producer.
“I will pursue something that I love -- and hopefully become good at it, instead of pursuing something that I'm good at -- but don't love.” 41 likes
“The best teacher is experience. Find the educational in every situation.” 17 likes
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