Written By: Barbara Walters

Narrated By: Bernadette Dunne

Date: May 2008

Duration: 26 hours 46 minutes


Young people starting out in television sometimes say to me: “I want to be you.” My stock reply is always: “Then you have to take the whole package.”

And now, at last, the most important woman in the history of television journalism gives us that “whole package,” in her inspiring and riveting memoir. After more than forty years of interviewing heads of state, world leaders, movie stars, criminals, murderers, inspirational figures, and celebrities of all kinds, Barbara Walters has turned her gift for examination onto herself to reveal the forces that shaped her extraordinary life.

Barbara Walters’s perception of the world was formed at a very early age. Her father, Lou Walters, was the owner and creative mind behind the legendary Latin Quarter nightclub, and it was his risk-taking lifestyle that made Barbara aware of the ups and downs that can occur when someone is willing to take great risks.

The financial responsibility for her family, the fear, the love all played a large part in the choices she made as she grew up: the friendships she developed, the relationships she had, the marriages she tried to make work.
Ultimately, thanks to her drive, combined with a decent amount of luck, she began a career in television. And what a career it has been! Against great odds, Barbara has made it to the top of a male-dominated industry.

She has spent a lifetime auditioning, and this book, in some ways, is her final audition, as she fully opens up both her private and public lives. In doing so, she has given us a story that is heartbreaking and honest, surprising and fun, sometimes startling, and always fascinating.


  • Marsha W.

    Found all the details of her life very interesting.

  • Shelly

    I'm not a fan of Barbara Walters, but I enjoyed reading about her start in show business, her father's business, her mother's depression and her sister's interaction with the family. I began reading the unabridged book and switched to the abridged audiobook half-way through. If you really like Barbara Walters or her story, I would recommend the unabridged book because many of the more interesting parts of the book are either glanced over or completely missing from the abridged audiobook.

  • Anonymous

    I wasn't quite prepared for being so intrigued, inspired, amused and impressed by Barbara Walters and her autobiography....but I was. You don't really realize what a groundbreaker she is for women and journalism until you hear about each accomplishment, sometimes painful and hard-earned, but always deserved. I recommend this audiobook for anyone who is interested in women's rights, entertainment, news reporting and history.

  • Dale in Pittsburgh

    I grew up watching Barbara on TV; she was a part of my day as going to work or school. I truly enjoyed the book, learning about the life behind the face that I have seen on TV all these years. I also enjoyed the chapter when she told about her troubles with her daughter; she was very open and honest about it. I would recommend this to everyone, especially those who grew up watching Barbara.

  • Anonymous

    I didnt care for Barbara Walters when she first appeared on TV but over the years she "grew on me" so that now I like and admire her. Even though she has made a lot of money, she has not had an easy life as you will ssee if you read this book. It is well written, sentimental, truthful and well worth reading.

  • Anonymous

    This was an interesting book. I have always felt that Barbara Walters was smart, efficient, and somewhat cold. I still have the same opinion. She told stories from the past that was very interesting. I certainly enjoyed the book, but I didn't really form much of a connection to her as a person. As autobiographies go, this is a pretty good one, but not great.

  • Anonymous

    If you like Barbara Walters (and can stand her voice), you will like this book. It's a simple, fast book and gives you new insights into her life.

  • Peggy Stortz

    This book reminded me of how totally self-involved Walters is. She refuses to be honest with the reader. She was born"ten or so years after her parents married." Try ten years exactly. Her multiple marriages and divorces are dismissed with a multitude of excuses. Just as she refuses to admit to plastic surgery--take a look at her face and remember she's 81 years old--this whole book is inauthentic. Too bad--she had an interesting life, but you'll only hear about her career here.

  • Anonymous

    I never thought of Barbara Walters as a feminist or someone who had a difficult life, but what a surprise! My husband and I were engrossed as we listened to the 5 cds while on a road trip. A very amazing woman who broke through a lot of barriers given the male-dominated news field. It was good to be reminded of all the famous international political figures she managed to interview before others had a chance. So much more interesting than her current list of celebrity movie stars. I have more respect for her after listening to her fascinating life and especially in how she had to deal with her family obligations. Sounds like a very honest account of her ambitions and feelings. Go for it!

  • Linda B

    Loved this book. It was wonderful to know the story behind the person who always gets the story. She is a gifted writer and personality.

  • Anonymous

    Wonderful book to listen to on the road. I felt like Barbara was sitting in the car next to me chatting about her life!

  • Julie Thomley

    Excellent book! An astounding life. Well-written.

  • Cammi

    What an interesting autobiography from one of America's breakthrough women! Having Barbara as the reader made it even more personal.

  • Joan M

    Barbara Walters gives us an insightful look into the life of a woman news reporter and her climb to the top. Very interesting to hear her side of the numerous candid interviews she had with famous people of the world and how this all affected her life. The book is a bit long however interesting all the way through. She is an elegant, classy woman.

  • Anonymous

    As you'd expect from Barbara Walters, this book glides swiftly over personal information and focuses primarily on her career and backstage angst. If you're interested in the inner workings of the news industry, the book is very interesting. Otherwise, rather superficial.

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