In this intimate, beautifully crafted collection, Driver writes with disarming charm and candor about her bohemian upbringing between England and Barbados; her post-university travails and triumphs—from being the only student in her acting school not taken on by an agent to being discovered at a rave in a muddy field in the English countryside; shooting to fame in one of the most influential films of the 1990s and being nominated for an Academy Award; and finding the true light of her life, her son. She chronicles her unconventional career path, including the time she gave up on acting to sell jeans in Uruguay, her journey as a single parent, and the heartbreaking loss of her mother.
... full of pithy and sharp recollections of her rebelliousness and determination ... often at its strongest in its more intimate moments, when she seeks the kinds of connections she was denied as a child and could only fake for the cameras ... The fiercest writing in Managing Expectations is in its concluding chapter about her mother, fashion designer Gaynor Churchward, who died last year following a cancer diagnosis ... Driver’s memoir isn’t filled with much in the way of celebrity gossip or outsize personal trauma. But it reflects an actor’s close attention to strange, exasperating, heartbreaking behavior all around her, conveyed with wit and poise.
Driver candidly shares her joys and sorrows and successes and failures with wit, grace, and humor. She has an eye for the telling detail and easily parses the significance of each experience she writes about. The final essay in the collection is particularly affecting. In it, she writes movingly about her mother’s final illness and death in a way that will connect with anyone who has faced that experience. Fans of arts memoirs will enjoy this thoughtful and elegant book.
Driver parlays her ebullient charm from the screen to the page in this sparkling debut, a series of amusing essays on Hollywood, motherhood, and the vicissitudes of life ... Throughout, Driver’s beguiling wit and candor steal the show, even as she contends with the more difficult subjects later in life ... Humorous and heartfelt, this is sure to please fans.