Sunday, 1 January 2012

Elisabeth Sladen: the autobiography review! or Proof that the S really did stand for Star.

This is my first book review for the BBC! :)

I got this book for Christmas, and its been sitting on my to-read shelf since then, not because I didn't like the book or anything, but because I was worried how emotional it might make me. (I'll explain why later on.) But I decided this morning that I just had to read it, and if the tears came, then I would just let them fall.
Here is the front cover of the book:

I started reading this quite early this morning (the annoying thing with me is that my brain cannot stray from routine. So no matter how late I go to bed, I wake up at 6:30am every morning! and when I wake up, I cannot get back to sleep! So I decided that I would give in and start it then, hoping that I had enough tissues with me - just in case.) So it didn't take me that long to finish, but I am a quick reader, and to be honest I could usually have read a book the size of this one (Its 334 pages long) a little quicker, but with some parts quite emotional if you're like me, a big fan of Lis, it may take you a bit longer to finish then you first expect.

I think that this is a very good book. The fact that I'm a fan of the writer aside, it is still superbly written, its very easy to get lost in her tales, and the fact that she is 100% honest about everything (even members of the cast she didn't exactly see eye-to-eye with,) makes great reading. Though I must stress that if you aren't a fan of Elisabeth Sladen, her character Sarah Jane Smith, Doctor Who or The Sarah Jane Adventures (yup, you read right, the character of Sarah Jane became so successful that the BBC gave her her own show! and today she is still thought of as the greatest Doctor Who companion by fans.) Then you won't really understand most of the book then if you are a fan, as most of the chapters are completely focused on her time on Doctor Who and being Sarah Jane. But don't let this information immediately disregard the book. This book proves that Elisabeth Sladen is such a caring and motherly person, and definitely a person you would be great friends with. So if you don't know who she is, I would strongly suggest you google her. You will not be disappointed. (Also if you have time, check out her character Sarah Jane on Doctor Who and The Sarah Jane adventures, she is also a greatly underrated actress.)

I just wanted to point out that, for an autobiography, you don't really find out much about her personal life, but that was Elisabeth. She wasn't the type to blurt out what she had to breakfast to the an interviewer, she has her personal life, and she has her her acting career, and keeping them separate just makes me respect her more. But I just wanted to say this, just in case that type of thing isn't your cup of tea when you read an autobiography. Not that it really matters, as the compelling way she writes about her acting career all the more makes up for it.

Which brings me to the emotional side I mentioned earlier, if you don't know Elisabeth Sladen, you will not know this. In April last year, Lis sadly passed away from breast cancer.
Now, this was a huge loss to many, many people, including me. I had been a fan of Elisabeth Sladen for a while, ever since her character made her re-appearance in the modern Doctor Who episode School Reunion in 2005. Sarah Jane fascinated me, she was so feisty, and just so real. (Which I later found out was thanks to Elisabeth Sladen's wonderful talent, and that rest is history.)

Nobody knew that she was ill as she had only told close family. She cared to much about her fans and worried that if anyone else found out, she would have to stop filming (as filming for the newest series of the Sarah Jane Adventures was just started.) So loved her fans, and that was why the autobiography wasn't published until she passed away.
She was worried that if she had forgotten a co-stars name, or got a Doctor Who episode slightly wrong, she would disappoint her fans, and that is something she did not want to do. But as a final tribute to her, her husband and daughter, Brian and Sadie Miller, decided to publish the final draft of her book in her memory after her death.
And with a beautiful and touching foreword by co-star David Tennant and epilogue by her husband and daughter, Brain and Sadie Miller, this really is a completely fitting tribute to the wonderful woman that Elisabeth Sladen truly was, and is a recommended read to all her fans. (I would rate it 12+ myself, as it may be a little upsetting for her younger fans, but that is just my opinion!) and I give it 10/10.
Lis was such a kind woman and fantastic actress, and will be extremely missed by all her fans. RIP and Thankyou for everything, we won't forget you. xoxo

I hope you enjoyed this review, and please comment with your opinions, on the book or this review. I'd love to hear them!
Thankyou for reading!
W-O-W xoxo


  1. Oh and excuse any typos, bad grammer, or anything like that!
    If there are any of these please forgive me xoxo

  2. Great review! Would you mind following my blog since I followed yours? Thanks

  3. Thankyou so much! and yes, of course! :) xoxo

  4. A good review, i share your love of this wonderful human being. I have read the book and it's had me in stitches in places, and in tears> Although I'd just like to point out that this bit is wrong: "She cared to much about her fans and worried that if anyone else found out, she would have to stop filming (as filming for the newest series of the Sarah Jane Adventures was just started.) So loved her fans, and that was why the autobiography wasn't published until she passed away"

    She only found out in the February and she'd already done the first half in 2010, she didn't publish the book because she thought no one would want to read about her, it was nothing to do with the fact she had cancer. x

  5. I bought this book earlier this year (early April) and began reading it immediately. I'm so glad I did! I could hear her voice in my head as I read, like listening to the Sarah Jane Adventures audiobooks. I have all the audiobooks and episodes of the Sarah Jane Adventures and are 6 stories off having all her classic Doctor Who work. I plan on reading it again because I rushed it a bit the first time. It is a beautiful book. RIP Lis.

  6. Great review! I had the same trepidation about reading it but am glad I did. What do you think she said that could have been so bad that Pertwee socked her?

  7. I literally cried when she died i didn't actually believe that i thought it wasn't real because as an actor and character she is wonderful and a delighted person i loved her roles so much to a point that i thought i should copy her " i know thats quite weird but at the same time its sad "when she acted the first sarah jane adventures i told myself this actor is so far the best actor, and she was good to a point were i was scared of her because she was so good at acting, and i thought maybe thats real maybe she really saves the earth quite frankly she actually did save the world this sounds weird but it definintly doesn't if you watch her acting in doctor who, and talking about Sarah jane adventures thats another long story i actually loved that series to a point were i biult my own sonic lipstick and k9 im still a fan of her becuase she didnt't die in vein she passed away because she had breast cancer and God bless her until now i watch her series over and over again i never get sick of them because there actually good looking im building my own mr.smith ohh forgot to mention i watched the last episode about a week ago i cried i know that sounds girly but it doesn't and when it was over i told myself i need to watch more or i will become depressed If she didnt pass away she would actually film the next episode called MEET MR.SMITH even BBC mentions it and wikia and russel t davies said when she passed away it was a debate wether to exchange her character or stop the show but quite frankly it didn't cancel it has just stopped I LOVE HER SO MUCH MAY GOD BLESS HER SHE DOESNT DESERVE TO DIE LIKE THAT DID YOU KNOW if she didnt pass away she would film more episodes until season 9 or something and she was about to win an award but they got the news that she passed away
    ps: ill never forget her im going to watch more episodes of SJA sorry about my english