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Mostly True: A Memoir of Family, Food, and Baseball
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Mostly True: A Memoir of Family, Food, and Baseball

3.59  ·  Rating Details ·  158 Ratings  ·  24 Reviews
Molly O'Neill's father believed that baseball was his family's destiny. He wanted to spawn enough sons for an infield, so he married the tallest woman in Columbus, Ohio. Molly came out first, but eventually her father's plan prevailed. Five boys followed in rapid succession and the youngest, Paul O'Neill, did, in fact, grow up to be the star right fielder for the New York ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 23rd 2008 by Scribner (first published April 25th 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Diane
Apr 03, 2014 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A few weeks ago I posted a review of Julia Pandl's Memoirs of the Sunday Brunch, and Sarah, a Goodreads friend, suggested I might like Molly O'Neill's Mostly True- A Memoir of Family, Food and Baseball. Since those are three of my favorite things, I searched and found the book and read it.

Sarah was right; what a fantastic memoir! Molly is the oldest O'Neill child, followed in succession by five boys in the 1950s and 1960s. They grew up in Columbus, Ohio, a close-knit crew, and much of their live
...more
Paula
May 01, 2008 Paula rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thoroughly enjoyed Molly O'Neill's autobiography. Her story about growing up in Columbus OH in the 50's and 60's, her subsequent move east and transformation to a renowned writer and chef was a fun literary romp. I liked reading about her relationship with her parents and brothers (one of whom is Paul O'Neill of Cincinnati Reds and New York Yankees baseball fame) who impacted her life as much as her friends and Julia Child and Lillian Hellman, who also influenced her path. A great read for any ...more
Molly
Jul 27, 2010 Molly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Molly by: Susan - bearswampreflections.blogspot
Shelves: memoirs
We are what we make of ourselves, but our family - warts and all - creates the base that we build everything off of. Molly O'Neill's memoir embraces this theme. She is a well known writer and critic of food for large New York and Boston print publications. Her little brother was a legendary outfielder for the Yankees. But her book focuses mostly on life before the bright lights and big cities. It focuses on her base.

Although I grew up several decades after Molly, I found myself identifying so st
...more
Ann
Mar 08, 2010 Ann rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I lost interest in this book about halfway through. Molly was raised in a fascinating family, a father who was blue collar all the way and five brothers lived baseball as survival in the family dynamics. That left Molly as her mother's helper and confidant. The relationship between the parents was very well portrayed, as was the need for recognition in such a large family.

Then Molly grew up, worked hard, got lucky, met many famous people and became the food columnist for the New York Times. But,
...more
Joanne
Sep 21, 2007 Joanne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
I really enjoyed this book. Molly O'Neill does a nice job of painting pictures of her childhood memories, days as a chef and feminist and struggles to become a mother. There is nothing earth-shattering in this memoir. And that is absolutely refreshing to me. It is just a sometimes witty and fun look at the life of a foodie gal in an all-American, baseball obsessed, male dominated family. Hmm, wonder why I identify so much with this one?
Amy
Sep 16, 2008 Amy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Kind of rambling, mildly interesting. I read it at bed and get through a couple of pages before falling asleep. I'm not in a big hurry to get back to it but do again the next night anyway. I enjoy reading about this family, I think, primarily because the story makes so many references to Columbus history and locations that I kind of enjoy. Overall though, this story seems like a placeholder for my next good book...
Sandy
Jan 27, 2009 Sandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: food-cooking, memoir
It left me wanting to know more about Molly and her O'Neill family members. She's had an interesting life. The early years were very detailed, but information on the later years was pretty sparse. I imagine that was to protect people's privacy (the events didn't happen long ago) but the gaps are noticable. She barely mentions her husband and stepdaughter. That's why I only gave it 4 stars. Otherwise, it was easy to read and interesting.
Jennifer Lindsay
Mar 24, 2010 Jennifer Lindsay rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: baseball, memoir
A love letter to food, to family, to memories, to baseball. Especially a love letter to food. Wonderful writer. Beautiful memoir.

Kicking off the baseball season with a memoir from the older sister of Paul O'Neill (Yankees). Food and baseball and family: some of my favorite things too! Next in line: "The Crowd Sounds Happy" - another memoir surrounding baseball and how it was a respite during childhood for the author. Both of these books I got from PaperbackSwap - love, love!
Alaina
Jun 19, 2010 Alaina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Molly finds the perfect balance in writing about family, food and baseball in this lovely memoir. This book inspired me to make calls to my family just to say 'hello' and try out new recipes. I really did laugh out loud at times and in the end, I cried. The baseball theme really does make it a perfect summer read.
Cindy
Dec 28, 2007 Cindy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: food, memoirs
Not being a big baseball fan, I did not know about the famous Paul O'Neill. This book was recommended by AMAZON becuase I am a big fan of "foodie" memoirs. While I enjoyed the entire book, the second half was more engaging. A memoir that shows that the American Dream is still alive and well and reachable by persons from all walks of life.
Andrea
Aug 06, 2010 Andrea rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5-star-favorites
Absolutely delightful - a memoir of a famous food critic and cookbook author whose brother just happens to be the former Yankee, Paul O'Neill. The style is extremely witty and entertaining and the family story has moments that will "hit home" with many.
Dolanite
Mar 29, 2013 Dolanite rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love a good memoir and this book qualifies! I especially enjoyed the portions of the book about the author with less focus on her family. This book was clearly a labor of love and it was unique and humorous. If you like memoirs give this one a read..
Lara
Jul 04, 2011 Lara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great account of life in the O'Neill family, from the perspective of Paul's oldest sibling, Molly. Reminds me a bit of Anthony Bourdain's "kitchen confidential" in the sense that she earned her stripes in the kitchen before becoming a "food critic".
Cynthia
Apr 22, 2011 Cynthia marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended by Mum 4/2011
April
Story of the O'Neil family. Daughter Molly is a famous food critic and son Paul is a professional baseball player.
Ernest
Jan 26, 2009 Ernest rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book is kind of boring because it takes forever to get to the point. I thought that it would mention Paul O'neil by now
Janna
Aug 31, 2008 Janna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs
A book that I was sad to finish because I really enjoyed it. A foodie memoir with a love of family and baseball.
Monica
May 29, 2012 Monica rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Connections to Irish Catholic families, O'Neills, Nebraska, food, feminism...what's there not to love and identify with??
Richard
Jan 10, 2013 Richard rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Early bits are interesting, but not enough baseball or food for me. Just because you've achieved a minimum level of fame does not make everything you do interesting.
Christine
Thankfully Paul O'Neill was a better baseball player than his sister is a writer.
Colleen
Mar 02, 2009 Colleen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ok, never got around to finishing.
Lennie
Lennie rated it really liked it
May 02, 2013
Tammy
Tammy rated it liked it
Sep 12, 2013
Kim Levi
Kim Levi rated it it was ok
Sep 30, 2014
Donna
Donna rated it it was ok
Oct 07, 2007
Carol
Carol rated it it was amazing
Dec 06, 2011
Kevin
Kevin rated it liked it
May 28, 2014
Elizabeth
Elizabeth rated it liked it
Mar 27, 2013
Gareth Jones
Gareth Jones rated it really liked it
Jul 08, 2016
Lulu
Lulu rated it liked it
Sep 09, 2007
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Mostly True 1 6 Sep 21, 2007 10:09PM  
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