The 411: Must Read Celebrity Memoirs for 90s Babies

Staff Picks

The 411: Must Read Celebrity Memoirs for 90s Babies

Celebrity memoirs are often guaranteed best-sellers, and rack up library holds the second they enter the catalog, but they can be hit or miss for people born of a certain generation. While they might have an interesting voice, it can be hard to fall into the story of an actor you barely know recounting the making of a movie you’ve never seen. For those of us born or raised in the 1990s, we are now finally getting our own generation of celebrity memoirs—recounting things we lived through from a new perspective, and offering insight into their lives. 

If you grew up in the 90s and early 2000s on pop culture, blockbuster movies, kids TV, and sitcom re-runs, add these celebrity memories to your reading list ASAP. The holds lists may be long for some of these—but consider checking out the audiobooks read by the authors via Libby!
The majority of these titles touch on substance abuse, so please read with care. 

Beyond the Wand by Tom Felton

Did you grow up on the Harry Potter books or films? Then you’ll fall right into Tom Felton’s memoir of his upbringing, how he became Draco Malfoy, and his own experience with substance abuse and fame following the final film. From stealing naughty DVDs to pulling pranks on set, this is a side of the actor you might not have seen before. 

Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing by Matthew Perry

Do you still tune into Friends reruns whenever they’re on TV? Then you’re probably ready for Matthew Perry’s bombshell memoir about his substance abuse issues, the making of the show, and everything those reruns don’t show you. This is an especially poignant read for anyone who watched Friends when it was originally airing, but will still resonate with later-viewers. 

Will by Will Smith

Can you still sing the entire Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song, word for word? Then you need to pick up Will Smith’s memoir, which gives you the background you want, but goes so much more in-depth into what makes Smith tick, what has influenced his life, and more. You’ll never watch Hitch the same way again. 

I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jeanette McCurdy

For those of us born in the mid-90s who grew up on Nickelodeon and a bevy of child stars dealing with crises, McCurdy’s emotionally raw and honest memoir about her upbringing with a narcissistic mother, dealing with abusive behavior in Hollywood, and rediscovering herself and her passions is a must-read. Even readers who never watched a single episode of iCarly will still find themselves bewitched by McCurdy’s narration. 

Happy People are Annoying by Josh Peck

Another Nickelodeon read–this memoir requires almost no experience with Josh Peck as an actor, as his specific roles are really the background characters in this memoir about growing up fat, his experience with weight loss and substance abuse, and about making a name for himself (again) in an ever-changing social media landscape. If you remember specific vines almost every day and find yourself saying “an avocado, thanks” more than once a month, this book is for you–regardless of your experience watching Drake and Josh. 

May be an image of 1 person, child, standing and book About the Author: Aryssa is a youth services librarian who loves listening to non-fiction audiobooks, crying over middle grade novels, and eagerly anticipating the next Caldecott Medal announcement. When she's not reading, she can be found 3D printing in the MLK Maker Labs, hanging out with her cat Koshka, or taking in local theatre. Her favorite book of 2022 was The Ogress and the Orphans by Kelly Barnhill.