A Story Lately Told

Coming of Age in Ireland, London, and New York

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About The Book

Anjelica Huston’s “gorgeously written” (O, The Oprah Magazine) memoir is “an elegant, funny, and frequently haunting reminiscence of the first two decades of her life…A classic” (Vanity Fair).

In her first, dazzling memoir, Anjelica Huston shares the story of her deeply unconventional early life—her enchanted childhood in Ireland, living with her glamorous and artistic mother, educated by tutors and nuns, intrepid on a horse. Huston was raised on an Irish estate to which—between movies—her father, director John Huston, brought his array of extraordinary friends, from Carson McCullers and John Steinbeck to Peter O’Toole and Marlon Brando.

In London, where she lived with her mother and brother in the early sixties when her parents separated, Huston encountered the Rolling Stones and Fleetwood Mac. She understudied Marianne Faithfull in Hamlet. Seventeen, striking, precocious, but still young and vulnerable, she was devastated when her mother died in a car crash. Months later she moved to New York, fell in love with the much older, brilliant but disturbed photographer, Bob Richardson, and became a model. Living in the Chelsea Hotel, working with Richard Avedon and other photographers, she navigated a volatile relationship and the dynamic cultural epicenter of New York in the seventies.

A Story Lately Told is an “evocative” (The New York Times), “magically beautiful” (The Boston Globe) memoir. Huston’s second memoir, Watch Me, will be published in November 2014.

About The Author

Academy Award-winning actress and director Anjelica Huston has received honors from the National Society of Film Critics; the Independent Spirit Awards; and the Golden Globe Awards; as well as multiple Oscar, BAFTA, and Emmy awards or nominations. Huston most recently starred on the hit TV show Smash. She is the author of the memoirs A Story Lately Told and Watch Me.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Scribner (October 2014)
  • Length: 288 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781451656305

Raves and Reviews

“[An] elegy for a vanished world, [A Story Lately Told] becomes a seductive social history of the 1960s—and the story of [Huston’s] fractious separation from an indomitable father and grief for the loss of the mother who was the ballast of her life.”

– Sheila Weller, The New York Times Book Review

“Impressively written in a style that is as graceful and natural as breathing and as observant as that by a ‘born writer.’…[Huston] comes of age surrounded by talent, pot, fame and photographers, and tells her tale with unexpected distinction.”

– Jeff Simon, The Buffalo News (Editor’s Choice)

“Huston’s privileged childhood is described with great texture. The enormous estate in Ireland where her family lived is a rambling, magical place. The names that are dropped in this book don’t constitute name-dropping, but are simply the names that populated her childhood…[Huston] is a smart and subtle enough writer not to aim for a pop diagnosis, but instead, once again, [goes] for something truer, deeper and richer…[A] stirring memoir.”

– Meg Wolitzer, NPR

“Anjelica Huston grew up in what sounds a fairy tale—magically beautiful, yet tinged with loss, sadness, and monsters.”

– Kate Tuttle, Boston Globe

A Story Lately Told proves that Huston is a third-generation storyteller. As she chronicles her earliest memories through age 22, she echoes the rhythms and structures of novels like Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and What Maisie Knew, focusing on surface sensations of youth while implying profound internal changes.”

– Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer

“Anjelica Huston has lived a big, colorful life—big and colorful enough to fill two volumes of an autobiography…Huston has a way with a descriptive phrase, and it’s on display in A Story Lately Told.”

– Jocelyn McClurg, USA Today

“[Huston’s] lovely, novelistic writing carries the book….As a storyteller, she’s having more fun than a monkey in a lingerie drawer.”

– Melissa Maerz, Entertainment Weekly


– Mary Pols, People

“An elegant, funny, and frequently haunting reminiscence of the first two decades of her life…A classic.”

– Graydon Carter, Vanity Fair

“[A Story Lately Told] contains a plethora of compelling tales.”

– Maggie Lange, New York magazine

“[A Story Lately Told] is peopled by names like Carson McCullers, John Steinbeck, Peter O’Toole, Marlon Brando, Monty Clift and the succession of gorgeous, interesting women who made up her father’s peripatetic life. Anjelica can really write. The prologue alone to her memoir is worthy.”

– Liz Smith, Huffington Post

“Structured in short, colorful vignettes, A Story Lately Told shows off Ms. Huston’s fabulous memory, keen observations and lovely use of language.”

– Carol O’Sullivan, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

“[A] brave account…”

– Publishers Weekly

“Intriguing…Huston offers a fascinating account of her charmed childhood (peppered with celebrities coming to dinner) and her rebellious stage.”

– Shelf Awareness

“Compelling, thoughtful, starry reading…What’s particularly enjoyable about her story is the rhapsodic way that she beautifully describes that bygone world.”

– Alexander Larman, Guardian (UK)

“Elegant and economical.”

– Helen Brown, Telegraph (UK)

“A wise, witty, and wonderful autobiography.”

– Roger Friedman, Showbiz 411

A Story Lately Told is written with the magic of the Irish and a touch of the family genius. From her vivid descriptions of growing up in the horse country of County Galway, Ireland, to her glimpses of rough glamour in the Chelsea Hotel, Anjelica's writing shines with her particular mix of intelligence, beauty, wit, and courage. Her book is gorgeous.”

– Mike Nichols

A Story Lately Told is filled with glitter, glamour and excitement, but it is underpinned by loss, solitude and estrangement, and the need to tell the truth, which makes the book memorable and affecting. Anjelica Huston’s account of growing up in Ireland is fascinating and masterly, as is her version of life in London and New York in the 1960s.”

– Colm Tóibín, author of Brooklyn and The Testament of Mary

“If a storytelling gene exists, Huston inherited one from her father, the Oscar-winning director John Huston, and another from her mother, the ballet dancer Enrica Soma, who nurtured in her children a love of books and a gift for observation.”

– Ellen Freilich, Reuters

“Elegantly written…Told with grace and honesty. You would expect no less from this fascinating, unusual woman.”

– Joy Bennett, Jewish Journal of LA

“Told in lush prose, [A Story Lately Told] is at once an eyewitness account of the social history of London and New York in the '60s and '70s, a wistful remembrance of childhood in an idyllic Irish country manor, and an exploration of what it meant to be reared at the crossroads of celebrity and culture as the daughter of director John Huston (“The African Queen,” “The Maltese Falcon”) and his fourth wife, Italian-American ballerina Enrica Soma.”

– Samantha Dunn, Orange County Register

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