cover image Grace Notes: My Recollections

Grace Notes: My Recollections

Katey Sagal. Gallery, $26 (256p) ISBN 978-1-4767-9671-0

Sagal, who played Peggy Bundy in Married... with Children, shares her wild, hilarious stories of growing up, struggling with addictions, and finding herself. She opens on a scene of her mother—“the singing sweetheart of Cherokee County,” a nickname she earned singing on the radio in Gaffney, S.C.—holding her in her lap and teaching her to play guitar on the Martin that once belonged to Burl Ives. Sagal, whose mother suffered from mental and physical illnesses, often turned to her father, a director who was often hard to please and critical, though loving in his own way. Sagal decided early that “music is the key to everything” and by age 15 she joined a band. She eventually found a long-standing gig singing background vocals as one of Bette Midler’s “Staggering Harlettes,” and later sang with and befriend one of her idols, Etta James. Following a bout with cancer, Sagal eventually landed her signature role in the sitcom Married... with Children, which ran for 11 seasons. Sagal proves to be tough and sassy yet vulnerable as she movingly reflects on the stillbirth of her daughter, Ruby, which gave Sagal a deeper love for life; in addition, she touchingly introduces readers to each of her other children, who are the “teachers that parents can never find—until they have children.” (Mar.)