Customer Reviews for

Diary of a Stage Mother's Daughter: A Memoir

Average Rating 4
( 46 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(24)

4 Star

(12)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(2)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

Most Helpful Favorable Review

15 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

Melissa Francis, childhood star of Little House on the Prairie,

Melissa Francis, childhood star of Little House on the Prairie, writes a book about her life growing up with a stage mother. Having been an actress her whole life with her mom there every step made growing up anything but normal for Melissa. Between missing school fo...
Melissa Francis, childhood star of Little House on the Prairie, writes a book about her life growing up with a stage mother. Having been an actress her whole life with her mom there every step made growing up anything but normal for Melissa. Between missing school for auditions and her mother’s crazy mood swings her childhood was very emotional and challenging.

Not remembering Melissa Francis from Little House on the Prairie, I was not sure how much I would enjoy reading her story. I was very happily surprised by how much of her story really was about her mother and older sister, Tiffany. This was not a story only about Little House on the Prairie, this is a story about a mother who would only accept a perfect child and a picture perfect life and the kids that had to grow up with that mother.

Immediately I despised Melissa’s stage mother. How could a mother ever treat her daughters as she had? I do believe that she felt she was doing the absolute best for the girls, but nothing is further from the truth. As a mother myself, I would hope my kids would never feel the fear and pity Melissa and Tiffany felt towards their mother.

I loved following Melissa through her childhood journey to adulthood. My heart broke at her youth, getting put down and beat up one minute and the built up the next minute. I find it amazing that she made it to adulthood and to a normal adulthood with a successful career. It truly shows the strength Melissa has.

If you read this hoping for the inside scoop on Little House on the Prairie you will be disappointed. If you read the looking for a heartwarming and sometimes sad story about a young girl breaking away from her sometimes cruel mother and becoming a successful journalist, mother, wife and woman you will love this story as much as I did.

posted by CharlotteLynnsReviews on November 13, 2012

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Illuminating

Give it a few chapters and the juvenile writing steps up a notch. The story in itself is compelling. As a big fan of Little House on the Prairie I remembered the scenes that Melissa describes and she really was so cute and a fine little actor. Her personal story is h...
Give it a few chapters and the juvenile writing steps up a notch. The story in itself is compelling. As a big fan of Little House on the Prairie I remembered the scenes that Melissa describes and she really was so cute and a fine little actor. Her personal story is harrowing, though. Melissa writes very convincingly of her struggle with an ultra-abusive, manipulative mother and a weak father who apparently cannot see his daughters are being hit and kicked out of cars by their own mother - let alone save them. He does not stand up to this mother and yet he is a successful business who chose the entrepreneur route because he could not take orders; somehow, though, he is so helpless and weak under his wife. A bit contradictory but the mother is a real monster. I felt so very badly for Melissa and her sister Tiffany but it was also clear that Melissa had a special inner strength from her earliest days and that strength carried her through. She was awake the the wrong that was her mother and she knew she had the power to stop that family cycle.

posted by TwistOfFaith on December 3, 2012

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 12 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2012

    Very entertaining read

    Sad, juicy and tragic look into the author's life as the daughter of a stage mother. I tore through it.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2012

    Enjoyed reading ...

    I was a Little House On The Prairie fan. Would recommend it to fans of the show.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 13, 2013

    Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings  Although Littl

    Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings

     Although Little House on the Prairie is not the show I know a lot of, I still wanted to read this memoir to hear an insight into the inner workings of childhood stardom and how it affects not only the child star, but the entire family.  Melissa Francis takes you into the inner workings of her family to show you the good, the bad and the ugly when you have a child star and a mom who wants nothing more than complete fame.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 4, 2013

    Although Ms. Francis makes an effort to recount her life in a fa

    Although Ms. Francis makes an effort to recount her life in a fair and balanced way, hostility towards her mother drives this well-written memoir. She convincingly presents herself as intelligent, ambitious and responsible, and her mother as volatile, controlling, depressive and generally difficult to live with.

    Yet through most of the book, the author’s underlying hostility seemed disproportionate to her mother’s wrongdoings. Paradoxically, Ms. Francis tacitly acknowledges her mother’s contributions to her success without really giving her any credit. She writes about how her mother staunchly supported her childhood activities, instilled in her the belief that she could accomplish anything if she worked hard enough, and lavished her with luxuries (many of which were probably bought with the author’s own income as a child actor.)

    By the time Ms. Francis wrote of leaving home for an Ivy League school, I was impressed with her achievements yet disengaged due to the woe-is-me tone. I wondered if her memoir was written in retaliation against her mother. However, an unexpected outcome brought me around to empathize deeply with her position. I found her book interesting and touching, and I hope writing it gave her some closure.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 27, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Melissa Francis takes what I expect the worst parts of any stage

    Melissa Francis takes what I expect the worst parts of any stage mother to be an chops it up with a very honest, account of her tough upbringing and waiting for the she could run from the roost to live her life as she wanted.

    It is amazing that with the Jackie Coogan law, childhood actors are still struggling at their hands of their parents. In this case it is a money thirsty, domineering mother and a keep the blinders on father. Melissa was working on a show that has been in syndication for years yet had to work part time to afford things.

    I kept thinking two things as I read this...how smart and calculated she was even a teenager to really see her mother for who she truly was and know that she had to take steps to take care of her own future such as sneaking some of those royalty checks that wouldn't be missed and putting them away for college and this is not to judge Melissa's father because it is obvious that they now have a very good relationship but, how HE allowed things that he could have controlled in his children's favor.

    If you are a Little House fan looking for the inside scoop, there is a tiny bit of that, I wish there was more but was thankful for what Melissa did include. Reading about Michael Landon and her on screen brother Jason Bateman, made me very happy but this was not a book about Little House On the Prairie. It is about a young woman who escaped the pressure her mother put on her to become a TV Journalist, news reporter, anchor, mother and now writer.

    If anything else, I hope writing it all down gave her the catharsis she so deserves.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2012

    Overcoming the odds

    Such obstacles to overcome - basically a mother who is verbally and mentally abusive. Its amazing Melissa became the strong, independent and extraordinary woman she is. Makes me very greatful I was raised in a loving home with wonderful.parents.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 30, 2012

    interesting - like watching a trainwreck

    Ms. Francis captures the suffering of a child growing up in a family where relationships are twisted by the cruelty and madness of her mother, a family in which the perpetrator is the strongest member.

    Ms. Francis maintains a deadpan observer's viewpoint that brings out in strong relief the damage done to her, her father, her sister; no one remains unscathed.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 14, 2012

    What a story - Must read

    Melissa had a storied childhood but a very troubling family life. Through it all she became a very successful young lady with a loving family of her own. With the right attitude and faith in god we can all become a model citizens.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 11, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 12 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1