Book Reviews of A Paper Life

A Paper Life
A Paper Life
Author: Tatum O'Neal
ISBN-13: 9780060540975
ISBN-10: 0060540974
Publication Date: 10/12/2004
Pages: 304
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.

3.7 stars, based on 99 ratings
Publisher: HarperEntertainment
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

32 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed A Paper Life on
Helpful Score: 7
This gal has had a rough life as a child, as an actress, as a daughter, as a wife, I am so glad she is now finally, whewwwwwww, able to have some enjoyment in her life. From her narcissistic non mother, and her eqotistical, violent, wife and girlfriend beating father, Ryan O'Neal, to the people he let abuse her and violate her, to constantly degrading her humanness and accomplishment. To her a*****hole husband, McEnroe, whom we all know what he's like. This woman needs a break. She may have had her digs in, but that's only because she was forced into actions in order to survive amongst the giants of humans in the Hollywood scenes and the 60's and the 70's and the pre-protection of children laws. Hooooooraahhhh for you Tatum. Good autobiography, she's brutally honest with herself and others. A very good read. I didn't put it down but once since I started reading it, and I'm not into bios.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 45 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
What a tortured life she led, how bizarre a childhood... who would have thought that the "poor little rich girl" would have struggled so hard. A great read that also makes you madas hell at her parents.
reviewed A Paper Life on
Helpful Score: 4
great, but sad book. makes you very sad for the little girl who grew up with a violent idiot for a father and then went off and married the same kind of man
reviewed A Paper Life on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I do not usually read autobiographies (or biographies) about celebrities but was drawn to her story. She speaks candidly about abuse and addiction, and eventually of survival. I enjoyed reading her story.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This book was wonderfully written and simultaneously scary. If you like the "going behind the scenes" into Hollywood life then this is your book. Easy, easy read and sad story about Tatum's life with her father, loss of children through custody, etc. I would recommend it for an easy, nosy read on a Sunday afternoon.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 94 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I liked the honesty of this book. I think Tatum definately has some issues but she has taken responsibility for some of it.
Enjoyable and interesting read.
reviewed A Paper Life on
Helpful Score: 2
This is a really good book. I enjoyed every minute of it. It's one of those books that you can hardly put down. I read it in one day! I would recommend it to anyone who likes autobiographies.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Very interesting book! I was never really into Tatum O'Neal, seeing as how I did not grow up watching any of her movies, but I did watch many of her father's. Insight into her marraige and her sex life, very good!
reviewed A Paper Life on + 85 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Listened to this abridged version of A Paper Life by Tatum O'Neal. She is both annoying and sympathetic. She discussses her very difficult childhood (Ryan O'Neal is a pyschopathic rage-aholic); her mother is an alcoholic and drug addict and her ex-husband, John McEnroe is a controlling bully. Her father was very jealous of her Academy Award and made her life basically a living hell. At the age of 14, Tatum was traveling to Europe by herself - no school - doing drugs, having sex - no discipline whatsoever. Her family may be the most dysfunctional family I've ever read about.

However, while you do feel sympathy for, she also is not very likeable. She whines constantly about her life and while she does own up to her very horrible drug addiction, you feel that she may start to shoot heroin again any day.

I think that listening to the abridged version of this book cuts out too much information. I'd suggest reading it or looking for the unabridged recording.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This is a really good book. It came yesterday & I finished it today. This book reminds you that what you see & hear on TV is not what is really happening out there. A lot of things start making sense after reading this.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 12 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Great rags to riches to abuse to riches to abuse, etc etc. I hope she can truly stop the cycle. Good book!
reviewed A Paper Life on
Helpful Score: 1
Tatum takes you back to the 70s when sex, drugs and partying were the norm, especially for the L.A. celebrity crowd. But the majority of the drama happened when she was a child and its quite "eye opening". Tatum drops a lot of celebrity names and you'll find out how she felt about Farrah Fawcett and many others. Its a sad, but fast reading autobiography about the effects of neglectful abusive parents and how she survived a bad marriage.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 53 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
A weak, obviously ghost-written exposition of Tatum's tragic childhood and marriage to John McEnroe.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 186 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
a good book, with awesome photos. really great read. i enjoyed learning about tatum and her family life.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 58 more book reviews
I'm not a Tatum O'neal fan, so I'm not real sure what drew me to this book, but I did enjoy it. Famous peoples lives are crazy.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 29 more book reviews
I thought this was a very interesting look at how a child star grew up in Hollywood!I had a lot of respect for Ms O'Neil after reading about her difficult and violent childhood.
reviewed A Paper Life on
A good book that spent alot of time building up and talking about Tatum's childhood and marriage, but not so much about her own addictions and realtionships post McEnroe.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 22 more book reviews
Just awesome. Quite shocking account of Tatum O'Neal's "paper" life. Her comments about her father, Ryan O'Neal are quite disturbing!
reviewed A Paper Life on + 21 more book reviews
Tatum does not hide the truth as to her drug abuse and family abuse as she grows up.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 186 more book reviews
I've always had a facination with Tatum- she was born one year exactly after me.
I listened to this book, and got so many tears in my eyes, I had to bring the CD into the house to listen to, so I wouldn't crash the car!
She has lived an incredible life.
She survived all of this and came out on top.
I always wonder how a human body can survive all the drugs that people take-and I feel sorry for their hollow lives. To survive all the abuse she took is beyond anything I can comprehend.
It also showed me that celebrities need to have more to their lives than their acting- Tatum talks about Why I'm Still Alive. It doesn't get spiritual, but it's a good thing to remind people.
It is a good read- and to listen to it, you get to listen to her husky voice, which to me was quite soothing!
reviewed A Paper Life on + 7 more book reviews
A very descriptive story about her life as a child movie star, a drug addict and abused wife. Touching and heartfelt.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 5 more book reviews
What a sad life!
reviewed A Paper Life on
Excellent good insight on both abusive men such as her Father and ex-husband John McEnroe.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 41 more book reviews
I loved this book. It was a very interesting and well written biography. Tatum did not hold back when talking about her life.
I read this book in about 2 sittings.
reviewed A Paper Life on
This is a very good book it's about Tatum O'Neal but it also talks about her father&brothers and many other hollywood personas,a really interesting story especially her marriage to tennis player John McEnroe.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 60 more book reviews
good and slightly disturbing, seemed to be a balanced look at Tatum O'Neals life
reviewed A Paper Life on + 9 more book reviews
This is very well wrote. Interesting about her and her family.Hate to put it down
reviewed A Paper Life on
reviewed A Paper Life on + 10 more book reviews
This was a very interesting tell all about Tatum's life.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 9 more book reviews
It's good there was a lot in this book that I never knew about her life.
reviewed A Paper Life on + 141 more book reviews
But sadly, she succumbed again after this book. She is talented but I feel that my family life even though it didn't have $$ growing up was way better than this mess.
reviewed A Paper Life on
Tatum Beatrice O'Neal is the oldest of Ryan O'Neal's four children. As the child of Ryan and his first wife - the actress Joanna Moore - she and her brother Griffin, and their half-brothers Patrick and Redmond have grown up in the limelight. Her acting career started early as she often co-starred opposite her father in some of the best-known films of the 1970's and 1980's.

At the age of ten, Tatum O'Neal became the youngest Academy Award winner in history - winning the Best Supporting Actress Oscar in 1974 for her performance in the film classic Paper Moon. She was hailed by the entertainment industry as a new kind of child star - sassy and precocious - someone who resonated with the emerging generation of hip, yet cynical moviegoers. As her father's sidekick, Tatum soon became a fixture at the most glamorous Hollywood parties. Appearing on the arm of one of the most flamboyant and fashionable stars in Hollywood - the man-about-town, Ryan O'Neal - she counted celebrities from Cher to Stanley Kubrick among some of her closest childhood friends.

Yet behind the glittering facade of Tatum's very public life lay her very private pain. A life full of heartbreak: abandonment, abuse and neglect. Her mother - the actress Joanna Moore - was a struggling alcoholic and drug addict, and drifted in and out of her daughter's life. Her father - raising both Tatum and her brother Griffin - grew increasingly punitive and distant from his children as time passed. By her late teens, Tatum - despite being a working actress with ten movies to her credit - had nevertheless begun a perilous slide into self-destruction.

Then, just before she turned twenty-one, Tatum met the man who would become her husband: the legendary tennis player, John McEnroe. The couple had three children together - but their eight-year marriage was a turbulent one - and led to one of the messiest high-profile divorces on record. With the subsequent demise of her marriage, Tatum very nearly succumbed to the demons of her past. She has since emerged from the darkness - living a clean and sober lifestyle - rediscovering herself as an actress, a mother, and a wonderfully vibrant woman in what she considers the prime of her life.

A Paper Life is a story of indomitable strength and courage: telling the life story of Tatum O'Neal - one of Hollywood's brightest, yet troubled young stars. Her story is deeply personal yet unflinchingly honest, poignantly funny, and unfailingly uplifting. This is a triumphant tale steeped in Hollywood lore - and is an inspiring testament to the healing power of love.

I must say that I have always enjoyed reading autobiographies about movie stars, and Tatum O'Neal's autobiography was no exception. I really enjoyed reading this book, and was happy to learn that she was continuing to stay strong in her sobriety. This was truly an inspirational story, although I would certainly agree that Tatum holds nothing back about her various relationships. I give this book an A+!

That being said, I was saddened to learn that in June of 2008 she was in trouble with the law again. I wish her all the best for the future, and hope that she can strengthen her relationship with her father.