BN.com Gift Guide

Rita Moreno: A Memoir [NOOK Book]

Overview

In this New York Times bestselling memoir, Rita Moreno shares her remarkable journey from a young girl with simple beginnings in Puerto Rico to Hollywood legend—and one of the few performers, and the only Hispanic, to win an Oscar, Grammy, Tony and two Emmys.

Born Rosita Dolores Alverio in the idyll of Puerto Rico, Moreno, at age five, embarked on a harrowing sea voyage with her mother and wound up in the harsh barrios of the Bronx, where she ...
See more details below
Rita Moreno: A Memoir

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$9.99
BN.com price

Overview

In this New York Times bestselling memoir, Rita Moreno shares her remarkable journey from a young girl with simple beginnings in Puerto Rico to Hollywood legend—and one of the few performers, and the only Hispanic, to win an Oscar, Grammy, Tony and two Emmys.

Born Rosita Dolores Alverio in the idyll of Puerto Rico, Moreno, at age five, embarked on a harrowing sea voyage with her mother and wound up in the harsh barrios of the Bronx, where she discovered dancing, singing, and acting as ways to escape a tumultuous childhood. Making her Broadway debut by age thirteen—and moving on to Hollywood in its Golden Age just a few years later—she worked alongside such stars as Gary Cooper, Yul Brynner, and Ann Miller.

When discovered by Louis B. Mayer of MGM, the wizard himself declared: “She looks like a Spanish Elizabeth Taylor.” Cast by Gene Kelly as Zelda Zanders in Singin’ in the Rain and then on to her Oscar-winning performance in West Side Story, she catapulted to fame—yet found herself repeatedly typecast as the “utility ethnic,” a role she found almost impossible to elude.

Here, for the first time, Rita reflects on her struggles to break through Hollywood’s racial and sexual barriers. She explores the wounded little girl behind the glamorous façade—and what it took to find her place in the world. She talks candidly about her relationship with Elvis Presley, her encounters with Howard Hughes, and the passionate romance with Marlon Brando that nearly killed her. And she shares the illusiveness of a “perfect” marriage and the incomparable joys of motherhood.

Infused with Rita Moreno’s quick wit and deep insight, this memoir is the dazzling portrait of a stage and screen star who longed to become who she really is—and triumphed.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Rita Moreno is one of the very few performers who have won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy, and a Tony; but though she started her Broadway career at the tender age of thirteen, this is her first memoir. That she continues to look for new frontiers should not surprise us: She launched a live solo autobiographical show in her octogenarian year. Knowing her candor and her apparently undiminished vivacity, we are not surprised that this new effort displays her characteristic boldness. One Hollywood read you won't want to miss.

Publishers Weekly
Most famous as Anita in West Side Story, Moreno, now 81, shares her life story in this candid memoir spanning her unceremonious childhood arrival from Puerto Rico to her decades-long career in show business. Born Rosita Alverio in Juncos, Puerto Rico, Moreno gets a rude awakening when in 1936 her single mother moves her to New York City. She finds a passion for singing and dancing while her mother looks for a new husband. Soon, Hollywood knocks on her door. Moreno gives the "Old Hollywood" studio system a long, honest look: she receives her stage name from a studio executive, she is regularly sent out on arranged "dates" with young actors, is made to attend a "troll-and-starlet" mixer with studio funders, and romances several celebrities of her time. In an era when actresses were rampantly "pretending to be ethnicities they obviously not," Moreno is cast again and again as the "hot Latin spitfire" when she was a "reliable, hardworking actor always in search of a better part." There is no question that Moreno's career wound its way through an interesting era; the memoir is a capably composed, entertaining read for anyone with a pre-existing interest in Moreno or 1950s Hollywood. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Actress Moreno’s memoir begins with dreamy recollections of her early childhood in Puerto Rico, and then proceeds in a more straightforward fashion, sometimes with the air of someone consulting a well-preserved date book to remind herself of events that need to be covered. Moreno’s life has had significant high points, including having won Emmy, Oscar, Grammy, and Tony awards—known as an EGOT—which she mentions several times, yet she doesn’t flinch at examining low points, such as her suicide attempt or the “roller coaster ride” of her career. She dishes, sometimes intimately, on Hollywood associates, both at length (Marlon Brando, Elvis Presley) and in brief tidbits (e.g., Mario Lanza, Donald O’Connor, Gene Kelly, John Kennedy, Rory Calhoun, Ann Miller, and many others). Though Moreno at times complains of being typecast as an ethnic spitfire, she would also emphasize her accent or exotic looks for laughs or to get a part. Perseverance is a theme throughout.

Verdict This readable and sometimes moving story of Moreno’s life in movies, on television, stage, and screen is surrounded by details of her politics and personal life.—Maggie Knapp, Trinity Valley Sch., Fort Worth, TX
(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101615225
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 3/5/2013
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 58,610
  • File size: 4 MB

Meet the Author

Rita Moreno

Rita Moreno is one of the few artists to win an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony. She has also received a Golden Globe Award and a National Medal of Honor. She recently concluded a sold-out run of her one-woman show, Life Without Makeup, at the Berkeley Repertory Theater in Berkeley, California, and regularly appears in the television show, Happily Divorced.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 23 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(9)

4 Star

(10)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

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
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 23 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2013

    Best movie star memoir I ever read! Rita gives a heartbreaking

    Best movie star memoir I ever read! Rita gives a heartbreaking account of her migration from Puerto Rico to dirty cold NYC. Unable to speak English, she suffered as a child. But she sure was a quick study and was on Broadway by 13. Her backstage stories are hilarious and revealing...and like Rita herself, very smart. She writes very very well. I couldn't put it down and kept the book in bed with me!
    Her stories about Marlon Brando, Elizabeth taylor, Paul henreid, Ann Miller, Elvis...all so interesting. I felt i was with her all those years- she was a teen starlet then a suffering unemployed actress, Maybe the best parts are her accounts of being a :"generic ethjnic" with an all purpose accent- Indian maiden, Siamese conclubine, Mexican harlot- they all spoke Rita-pidgin English. She had the smarts and compassion to fight for equal rights- for all races, and she deserves to be an icon. She is funny as hell, too.

    11 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted April 8, 2013

    This is more than the usual movie star tell all. In fact Rita M

    This is more than the usual movie star tell all. In fact Rita Moreno has exposed her soul without trashing the people in her life. It’s filled with vivid images and the coming of age tale of this immigrant Puerto Rican girl. Tasteful done – Love it.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted March 12, 2013

    An incredible life and an incredible book!

    An incredible life and an incredible book!

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 19, 2013

    Interesting and fascinating woman

    While I've never been an ardent fan of her work, I find her story fascinating. She is a person who understands herself pretty well, seems honest and direct (a quality I adore), makes many mistakes but seems to learn from them (eventually) and I found it hard to put down. The memoir is a bit spotty as it dwells on her torrid "romance" with Brando rendering all else to a minor status. Perhaps this is the seminal event in her life or the one her editor thought would sell best. Her comments about "the Pelvis" confirmed what others have said and I applaud her for that bit. I love memoirs and biographies from interesting people and she is a most interesting person...and to me her performing talent is secondary. I'd like to know her as a person...and this books makes me want to invite her to dinner for a chat. Read it.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 25, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    3.5 stars. Ms. Moreno is an incredible woman; I stand in awe of

    3.5 stars. Ms. Moreno is an incredible woman; I stand in awe of her, and I enjoyed reading this book very much. Am assuming, since I looked for co-writer or ghostwriting credits and there were none, Ms. Moreno wrote it herself, which is admirable in and of itself.

    She paints a vivid picture of her life in Technicolor Juncos, Puerto Rico, in the "ice-cream houses," and the contrast in going to gray, cold and grimy New York City was like going from Oz back to Kansas. This was a nice metaphor the first time it was used; by the third of fourth repetition it was annoying. And although she doesn't savage him, it seems that her 45+ year marriage with her now deceased husband was not all that and a bag of banana chips.

    The most detail she goes into at all is about her long-time affair with Marlon Brando, and yet, many things even in that seem glossed over. WAS she still having sex with him while he was married to other women - and how did she feel about that? She IS heartbreakingly candid about her illegal, botched abortion, and her mental frame of mind at the time she attempted suicide in Brando's house.

    I think most readers will come away from this as I did - tremendously impressed by M.s Moreno's life and accomplishments, saddened by the racism, sexism, and ageism that she and many other "ethnic" performers have had to endure, and in the end, wanting more. Isn't that the slogan in showbiz, "Always leave 'em wanting more"?

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted April 19, 2013

    Fast Read

    The book is written very well and keeps your attention. Ms. Moreno has had an interesting life and gives some insight as to how the movie industry worked, especially in the 1950's.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted March 25, 2013

    This book is turly inspirational and amazing. i can relate to it

    This book is turly inspirational and amazing. i can relate to it, in sooooo many ways. LOVE it

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted July 20, 2013

    Rita

    By far one of the sexiest women to ever live.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 12, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    A tale of survival, reinventing yourself & overcoming crippling self doubt

    Moreno's story is broken down into four parts, each one chronicling her evolution from humble little Rosita Dolores Alverio from Juncos into the sizzling songstress/screen siren, Rita Moreno. It's a tumultuous journey of insecurity, doubt, passion and self-discovery told in the most raw and honest of ways. In it, she describes the lush landscape of her native Puerto Rico, her struggle to break on to the Hollywood scene and her harrowing and debilitating relationship with bad boy, Marlon Brando. On the surface, Moreno's life seems so perfect but underneath it all it's one built atop broken promises --- by her mother and father, by Hollywood and by many lovers --- the strength she pulls from all these experiences though, that's what makes this book such an incredible one to read. Her story is as captivating as she herself is on screen.This book is packed with insight as Rita recounts her rise to fame and her experiences on the silver screen. I loved how she reviews her past performances in a more objective way. It's interesting to see what she's most critical about and what of those early performances she can really appreciate.Moreno is a multi-faceted woman --- she's strong, passionate, vivacious, demure and incredibly self-concious. Despite wearing a tough and sexy visage, like many of her contemporaries, she's more than just another pretty face. This book is her personal narrative on how she conqured the world and, if anything, it's one of the most authentic books I've ever read. She's had quite the journey and even though it wasn't alwasy the easiest, it was certainly an incredible one. Rita Moreno: A Memoir is the story about respected singer/actress, Rita Moreno. The story chronicles Moreno's journey from Puerto Rico to America and her struggles for fame, love and leading a fulfilling life. Featuring vignettes on her films, behind-the-scenes gossip on her fellow actors, intimate details about her love life, it's a tale of survival, reinventing yourself and overcoming crippling self doubt.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted August 25, 2013

    Sweetmil1

    I thought the book was your typical movie star story. I understand the pain she endured leaving her family in Puerto Rico, however throughout the entire book, she mentioned only once did she have her husband Lenny try to locate her long lost brother Francesco. Not only did her mother leave her baby boy, but she "forgot" about him also.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted June 19, 2013

    Delightful

    What a great memoir. I laughed cried and truly found myself really understanding a lot of what Rita Moreno had to go through as a young child. As a latina myself, who moved here when I was 12, could relate with a lot more than many could imagine.

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted April 12, 2013

    Recommended

    Well-written autobiography.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 30, 2013

    Good read for a fan

    A good read about a great lady...it's also an insightful look into the changing America and Hollywood from the WASPY rule through the civil rights shift and to the melting pot we should always have been.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted March 29, 2013

    To nook s.ex person

    Who the h.ell r u

    1 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 12, 2013

    Cant't say

    I can't give a review as it was a gift.

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted May 19, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 23 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)