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I Was Better Last Night: A Memoir
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Published:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group 2022
Status:
Available from OverDrive
Description
NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • A poignant and hilarious memoir from the cultural icon, gay rights activist, and four-time Tony Award–winning actor and playwright, revealing never-before-told stories of his personal struggles and conflict, of sex and romance, and of his fabled career
Harvey Fierstein’s legendary career has transported him from community theater in Brooklyn, to the lights of Broadway, to the absurd excesses of Hollywood and back. He’s received accolades and awards for acting in and/or writing an incredible string of hit plays, films, and TV shows: Hairspray,  Fiddler on the Roof, Mrs. Doubtfire, Independence Day, Cheers, La Cage Aux Folles, Torch Song Trilogy, Newsies, and Kinky Boots. While he has never shied away from the spotlight, Mr. Fierstein says that even those closest to him have never heard most of the tales—of personal struggles and conflict, of sex and romance, of his fabled career—revealed in these wildly entertaining pages.
 
I Was Better Last Night bares the inner life of this eccentric nonconforming child from his roots in 1952 Brooklyn, to the experimental worlds of Andy Warhol and the Theatre of the Ridiculous, to the gay rights movements of the seventies and the tumultuous AIDS crisis of the eighties, through decades of addiction, despair, and ultimate triumph.
 
Mr. Fierstein’s candid recollections provide a rich window into downtown New York City life, gay culture, and the evolution of theater (of which he has been a defining figure), as well as a moving account of his family’s journey of acceptance. I Was Better Last Night is filled with wisdom gained, mistakes made, and stories that come together to describe an astonishingly colorful and meaningful life. Lucky for us all, his unique and recognizable voice is as engaging, outrageously funny, and vulnerable on the page.  
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
03/01/2022
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780593320532
ASIN:
B096DPZ957
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Harvey Fierstein. (2022). I Was Better Last Night: A Memoir. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Harvey Fierstein. 2022. I Was Better Last Night: A Memoir. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Harvey Fierstein, I Was Better Last Night: A Memoir. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2022.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Harvey Fierstein. I Was Better Last Night: A Memoir. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2022. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
Feb 25, 2022 18:02:01
Date Updated:
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Last Grouped Work Modification Time:
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      • bioText: HARVEY FIERSTEIN is the Tony Award-winning author of Torch Song Trilogy and La Cage aux Folles. His other theater writings include Kinky Boots, Newsies, Casa Valentina (all Tony-nominated), A Catered Affair (twelve Drama Desk nominations), and Bella Bella, and his theater performances include, Torch Song Trilogy and Hairspray (Tony Awards for both), Fiddler on the Roof, La Cage aux Folles, Gently Down the Stream, and A Catered Affair. His film and television appearances include Mrs. Doubtfire, The Good Wife, and Cheers (Emmy nominated), and he has voiced characters in the film Mulan, and the shows Big Mouth, The Dark Crystal, BoJack Horseman, and many more. He lives in a small fictional town in Connecticut with whatever animals will have him.
      • name: Harvey Fierstein
imprint
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publishDate
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title
I Was Better Last Night
fullDescription
NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • A poignant and hilarious memoir from the cultural icon, gay rights activist, and four-time Tony Award–winning actor and playwright, revealing never-before-told stories of his personal struggles and conflict, of sex and romance, and of his fabled career
Harvey Fierstein’s legendary career has transported him from community theater in Brooklyn, to the lights of Broadway, to the absurd excesses of Hollywood and back. He’s received accolades and awards for acting in and/or writing an incredible string of hit plays, films, and TV shows: Hairspray,  Fiddler on the Roof, Mrs. Doubtfire, Independence Day, Cheers, La Cage Aux Folles, Torch Song Trilogy, Newsies, and Kinky Boots. While he has never shied away from the spotlight, Mr. Fierstein says that even those closest to him have never heard most of the tales—of personal struggles and conflict, of sex and romance, of his fabled career—revealed in these wildly entertaining pages.
 
I Was Better Last Night bares the inner life of this eccentric nonconforming child from his roots in 1952 Brooklyn, to the experimental worlds of Andy Warhol and the Theatre of the Ridiculous, to the gay rights movements of the seventies and the tumultuous AIDS crisis of the eighties, through decades of addiction, despair, and ultimate triumph.
 
Mr. Fierstein’s candid recollections provide a rich window into downtown New York City life, gay culture, and the evolution of theater (of which he has been a defining figure), as well as a moving account of his family’s journey of acceptance. I Was Better Last Night is filled with wisdom gained, mistakes made, and stories that come together to describe an astonishingly colorful and meaningful life. Lucky for us all, his unique and recognizable voice is as engaging, outrageously funny, and vulnerable on the page.  
reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        October 1, 2021

        A Duff Cooper Prize winner for Becoming Dickens, Oxford English professor Douglas-Fairhurst argues that for Dickens the emotionally tumultuous year of 1851 was The Turning Point that singularly shaped his oeuvre. A professor of Aegean civilization at the University of Bologna, Ferrera moves from Mesopotamia and Crete to China, Central America, Easter Island, and beyond to chronicle The Greatest Invention--writing. In I Was Better Last Night, Fierstein talks about being a cultural icon, gay rights activist, and four-time Tony Award-winning actor and playwright. Emmy Award-winning writer Galloway, who created the Reporter's famed Oscar Roundtables, revisits Madly in love Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh, among the first global celebrities (75,000-copy first printing). In Keats, British literary critic Miller uses verse and epitaph, e.g., "Endymion," "Bright Star," to explore the life of the English Romantic and present him less as dreamer than subversive. In a book structured as a series of letters to her book-loving father, Nafisi urges us to Read Dangerously, addressing literature as both solace and subversive power that can challenge repressive politics; originally scheduled for August 2021 (75,000-copy first printing). Oscar-nominated screenwriter, director, and actor Polley offers six essays capturing moments of her life, from stage fright to risky childbirth to healing herself after traumatic injury by retraining her mind to Run Towards the Danger, i.e., the very things that triggered her recurrent symptoms. The creator of The Good Place and cocreator of Parks and Recreation, Schur offers How To Be Perfect as a laugh-out-loud guide to living not the good life but the better life (200,000-copy first printing). Lead singer of the Ronettes--remember Be My Baby?--Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Spector recounts professional collaboration with and marriage to Phil Spector, then fighting to reclaim her musical legacy and her life (75,000-copy first printing).

        Copyright 2021 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        January 1, 2022
        The actor and playwright looks back on his pioneering path. Born in 1952 in Brooklyn, Fierstein writes that he "always stood out in a crowd." Whether this was due to his frequent wisecracks or his sneaking off to his parents' bathroom at age 7 to apply his mother's makeup, this personal history movingly charts the author's journey as a playwright and actor. Not content to revel in the success of his most famous roles on Broadway, Fierstein also gives insightful, unflinching glimpses into his artistic development and creative process. Among the strongest sections are the author's revelations about the evolution of his beloved Torch Song Trilogy, "proof of [the LGBTQ] community's] struggle and a road map for how we got here." Fierstein is a pleasant guide throughout, glossing over his role in countless firsts--"first openly gay actor to play an openly gay lead in a Broadway show" and "first openly gay actor to play an openly gay role on a sitcom"--as he shares his personal, professional, and creative highs and lows. The author is particularly strong when he writes about his feelings of abandonment during the AIDS crisis of the early 1980s. In stark yet passionate sections, he evokes the fear as well as the deep kinship that arose in his community during this time, though he is unsparing in many of his assessments. "I have never been able to shake the feeling that the heterosexual community at large let us die," he writes. "They wished us well, then turned their backs, issuing sighs of relief that they had nothing to worry about." Despite Fierstein's somberness when appropriate, he also excels at showcasing his quick wit. Interspersed with his creative and artistic journeys are hilarious stories of his encounters with celebrities including Matthew Broderick, Estelle Getty, and Robin Williams. It all adds up to an encapsulation of Fierstein's philosophy that there is "no such thing as having lived too much." A poignant, clever, and entertaining look at an impressive, unique career.

        COPYRIGHT(2022) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        January 24, 2022
        Fierstein, author and star of the Broadway hit Torch Song Trilogy, looks back on his show-biz travails and the struggle for gay rights in this raucous debut memoir. He recaps his parts in theater, movies, and TV—from an early turn as an asthmatic, coprophiliac, lesbian maid in Andy Warhol’s Pork to a portrayal of Congresswoman Bella Abzug—and his playwrighting achievements in groundbreaking gay-themed blockbusters like Torch Song and the musical La Cage aux Folles. Along the way, Fierstein spotlights celebrity japes—he threatened to crush comedian Jon Stewart’s genitalia in a movie scene but praised singer-songwriter James Taylor’s endowment when they shared a hot tub—as well as lurid episodes from New York’s gay demimonde of the 1970s and ’80s, and a bout with alcoholism that ended with a suicide attempt. Readers will appreciate his blunt takes on anti-gay discrimination in matters small (“Why do the straight guys always get laid in movies while the gay characters almost never do?”) and large (“The heterosexual community... let us die,” he writes of the AIDS crisis, “issuing sighs of relief that they had nothing to worry about”). Defined by a campy yet bittersweet comic sensibility, Fierstein’s vivid writing about the pratfalls, exhilaration, and painstaking craft of a life in theater beguiles. Photos.

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NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • A poignant and hilarious memoir from the cultural icon, gay rights activist, and four-time Tony Award–winning actor and playwright, revealing never-before-told stories of his personal struggles and conflict, of sex and romance, and of his fabled career
Harvey Fierstein’s legendary career has transported him from community theater in Brooklyn, to the lights of Broadway, to the absurd excesses of Hollywood and back. He’s received accolades and awards for acting in and/or writing an incredible string of hit plays, films, and TV shows: Hairspray,  Fiddler on the Roof, Mrs. Doubtfire, Independence Day, Cheers, La Cage Aux Folles, Torch Song Trilogy, Newsies, and Kinky Boots. While he has never shied away from the spotlight, Mr. Fierstein says that even those closest to him have never heard most...
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publisher
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group