cover image Heart of Glass: A Memoir

Heart of Glass: A Memoir

Wendy Lawless. Gallery, , $26 ISBN 978-1-4767-4980-8

Lawless (Chanel Bonfire) devotes her lively and engaging second memoir to her 20s,when she was setting out to pursue her passion for the theater, primarily in Manhattan (in the 1980s). The daughter of a “narcissistic, batty mom” and a father who was also an actor, Lawless is still reeling from her unconventional childhood (her mother kidnapped the author and her sister, raising them in an abusive environment far from her ex-husband) when she arrives in colorful, crime-ridden New York to study film at NYU. Initially, Lawless moves in with a boyfriend, but the relationship doesn’t last. In the pre-HIV atmosphere, she freely explores her sexuality, but her deep desire for a stable, committed relationship eludes her; she leans toward men who are “bad boys.” The author also flits from job to job (coat check clerk, deli worker, salesperson, etc.) and from one acting gig to another. After reuniting in Minneapolis with her long-lost father, she returns to New York, eventually landing a part in the popular play The Heidi Chronicles. Lawless’s route to success and happiness is intricate and circuitous (prepare to lose count of her love interests). As she shares her progression from an insecure, troubled girl to a young woman who can stand confidently on her own two feet, the unsinkable Lawless tells a tale of triumph over a difficult past. Readers will be drawn to her unique blend of sweetness, grit, and resilience. [em](Mar.) [/em]