Raised by a single mother who worked as a stripper and struggled with addiction, Minka spent years waking up in strange apartments as she and her mom bounced around the country, relying on friends and relatives to take them in. At times they even lived in storage units. She reconnected with her father, Aerosmith's Rick Dufay, and eventually made her way to Los Angeles, where she landed the role of a lifetime on Friday Night Lights. Now an established actress and philanthropist, Minka takes this next step in her career as a writer. She has poured her soul into the pages of this book, which ultimately tells a story of triumph over adversity, and how resilience and love are all we have in the end.
Poignant...an intricate portrait ... Vulnerable, self-aware and admirably introspective, she confronts her childhood trauma to decipher how it shaped her ... For all its candor, Kelly’s book is short on details about her acting career ... Even with the help of a professional she credits in her acknowledgments, Kelly’s clipped prose isn’t always so colorful, as she too often leans on stilted dialogue recollections and ham-handed turns of phrase. But the lack of lyricism can be forgiven in light of her raw soul-searching.
Her eventual celebrity and success as an actress on Friday Night Lights are mere footnotes in this memoir that is otherwise her coming to terms with the neglect and turmoil of her childhood. With extremely brief moments of optimism sprinkled solely in its final chapters, Kelly openly exposes her most complicated relationships and how they shaped her into someone habitually attracted to chaos ... The retelling of these memories is neither educational nor inspirational; they are simply deeply upsetting. Her introspection into her past is ultimately the defense and justification of the adults responsible for her troubled childhood—a roller coaster ride of one minute praising them for their affection, the next sparing no detail about her abuse and abandonment. It’s clear she’s still navigating their long-term consequences.