Kayla Hicks - Author Kayla Hicks - Author

I'm Glad My Mom Died: A Kayla Hicks Book Review

3 min read

A heartbreaking and hilarious memoir by iCarly and Sam & Cat star Jennette McCurdy about her struggles as a former child actor—including eating disorders, addiction, and a complicated relationship with her overbearing mother—and how she retook control of her life.

What is it about?

Jennette McCurdy was six years old when she had her first acting audition. Her mother’s dream was for her only daughter to become a star, and Jennette would do anything to make her mother happy. So she went along with what Mom called “calorie restriction,” eating little and weighing herself five times a day. She endured extensive at-home makeovers while Mom chided, “Your eyelashes are invisible, okay? You think Dakota Fanning doesn’t tint hers?” She was even showered by Mom until age sixteen while sharing her diaries, email, and all her income.

In I’m Glad My Mom Died, Jennette recounts all this in unflinching detail—just as she chronicles what happens when the dream finally comes true. Cast in a new Nickelodeon series called iCarly, she is thrust into fame. Though Mom is ecstatic, emailing fan club moderators and getting on a first-name basis with the paparazzi (“Hi Gale!”), Jennette is riddled with anxiety, shame, and self-loathing, which manifest into eating disorders, addiction, and a series of unhealthy relationships. These issues only get worse when, soon after taking the lead in the iCarly spinoff Sam & Cat alongside Ariana Grande, her mother dies of cancer. Finally, after discovering therapy and quitting acting, Jennette embarks on recovery and decides for the first time in her life what she really wants.

Told with refreshing candor and dark humor, I’m Glad My Mom Died is an inspiring story of resilience, independence, and the joy of shampooing your own hair.

My Review:

This was a book that I found difficult to put down.

Jennette McCurdy recounts her life story with such rawness and truth which I found so admirable.

Some parts make you really take a moment to wonder how she could have managed to survive such an ordeal and how she managed to come through it all with a sort of happily ever after.

Reading through the dynamic she shared with so many adults in her life as a young child brings to blaring clarity just how much kids look up to adults and are vulnerable to believing whatever these trusted adults tell them. How much of an impact the actions and wisdom passed down from adults to children leaves long-lasting effects on a person's life.

It also does a wonderful job shedding light on the sad reality of childhood fame, as many former child stars are doing lately. How much of a toll it takes on children, yet throughout the process families become so invested, and it becomes a goal to have a win no matter the cost.

This was an excellent read and I can only comment on Jennette McCurdy for the strength she has and what she has overcome.

I give this book a five-star review.

You can get it here: I'm Glad My Mom Died