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Part Swan, Part Goose: An Uncommon Memoir of…
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Part Swan, Part Goose: An Uncommon Memoir of Womanhood, Work, and Family

by Swoosie Kurtz

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I think Joni Rodgers is officially my favorite celebrity memoir collaborator. I loved Kristin Chenoweth's A Little Bit Wicked and Part Swan, Part Goose is just as beautifully written and readable. I've loved Swoosie Kurtz since the television show Sisters and then the amazing, but underrated Pushing Daisies (with Chenoweth). I was aware that she was a well-known stage actress also, but really had no idea how accomplished until I read this book.

Swoosie, an only child, has said the book was written as a love letter to her parents and I believe she absolutely accomplished this. I think I'm as big a fan of theirs now as I am hers. Her mother wrote a book in 1945 (My Rival, The Sky) chronicling her relationship with Olympic high-diver and accomplished Air Force pilot Frank Kurtz which Swoosie excerpts a good deal here, meshing her own life story with that of her parents' love story. It is very well done and I see her mother's book has now been re-released for Kindle with an intro from this book.

Swoosie's career and relationships are written with just a touch of sentimentality, but mostly with humor and perhaps a few regrets. Throughout the memoir, she speaks of the present as she (and a small army - no, family - of helpers) take care of her mother, Margo, who is in her nineties and has dementia. She speaks of no longer being the daughter, but sometimes the mother, husband or just a stranger in their relationship. She writes truthfully of her feelings about this shifting role and how much she loves, but sometimes needs to escape being the caregiver now.

From aquacades with her father to stage, television, big screen, and most recently the hit sitcom Mike and Molly, Swoosie Kurtz is an amazing performer and person. This memoir was a pleasure to read and I really enjoyed it. ( )
  horomnizon | Dec 12, 2014 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0399168508, Hardcover)

In a wise, warmhearted memoir that celebrates her extraordinary life and stellar career, Swoosie Kurtz shares just the right combination of personal misadventure and showbiz lore, candidly reflecting on the right choices that empowered her, the wrong choices that enlightened her, and the intimate journey of caring for an aging parent.

Animating this remarkable memoir is Swoosie’s relationship with her equally remarkable parents. Her father, Frank, was an Olympic athlete and highly decorated World War II airman. He flew a record number of missions in a cobbled-together B-17D called the Swoose. Her mother, Margo, was the quintessential military wife but with the spunk and will to match her husband’s. Her 1945 memoir, My Rival, the Sky, chronicled their lives up to the time of the birth of their daughter.

Today, Margo, who is fast approaching her hundredth birthday, lives with Swoosie. And Swoosie’s life has become a precarious and precious balancing act as she struggles to stay ahead of her mother’s increasing needs while navigating a showbiz career that keeps one foot in Hollywood and the other on Broadway.

The critics love Swoosie Kurtz….

“Inimitable…one of the best comic actors of our time.” —USA Today

“[An] expert comic actress…may just be the most seductive woman on the New York stage right now.” —Charles Isherwood, The New York Times

and “full of surprises…expressive…devastating…unforgettable.” —Ben Brantley, The New York Times

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:21 -0400)

In a wise, warmhearted memoir that celebrates her extraordinary life and stellar career, Swoosie Kurtz shares just the right combination of personal misadventure and showbiz lore, candidly reflecting on the right choices that empowered her, the wrong choices that enlightened her, and the intimate journey of caring for an aging parent.… (more)

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