Review: Talking As Fast As I Can by Lauren Graham


Talking As Fast As I Can

by Lauren Graham
In this collection of personal essays, the beloved star of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood reveals stories about life, love, and working as a woman in Hollywood—along with behind-the-scenes dispatches from the set of the new Gilmore Girls, where she plays the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore once again.

In Talking as Fast as I Can, Lauren Graham hits pause for a moment and looks back on her life, sharing laugh-out-loud stories about growing up, starting out as an actress, and, years later, sitting in her trailer on the Parenthood set and asking herself, “Did you, um, make it?” She opens up about the challenges of being single in Hollywood (“Strangers were worried about me; that’s how long I was single!”), the time she was asked to audition her butt for a role, and her experience being a judge on Project Runway (“It’s like I had a fashion-induced blackout”).

In “What It Was Like, Part One,” Graham sits down for an epic Gilmore Girls marathon and reflects on being cast as the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore. The essay “What It Was Like, Part Two” reveals how it felt to pick up the role again nine years later, and what doing so has meant to her.

Some more things you will learn about Lauren: She once tried to go vegan just to bond with Ellen DeGeneres, she’s aware that meeting guys at awards shows has its pitfalls (“If you’re meeting someone for the first time after three hours of hair, makeup, and styling, you’ve already set the bar too high”), and she’s a card-carrying REI shopper (“My bungee cords now earn points!”).

Including photos and excerpts from the diary Graham kept during the filming of the recent Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, this book is like a cozy night in, catching up with your best friend, laughing and swapping stories, and—of course—talking as fast as you can.

Lauren Graham. Such an inspiration. Through my high school years and on into adulthood, there has been one television show that has truly resonated and stuck with me. A show that I have always come back to in the difficult moments in my life, when I've reached my breaking point and needed an escape. Something to get my mind off of the stress and sadness. That show is Gilmore Girls.

My mother and I, while nothing like Rory and Lorelai per se, are very close. She's been my closest friend throughout my life, my biggest cheerleader, always there for me in the big moments. And Gilmore Girls hit home with me in that way. It's a show that my mom and I bonded over and continue to bond over. It's a show full of unique and witty characters, dynamic relationships and the struggles of those relationships. But most of all it's about the strength of family and the bond of a mother and daughter. My love for this show ultimately led to my desire to read Talking As Fast As I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls (And Everything In Between).

Within the first couple of pages it was quite obvious to me why they chose Lauren to play Lorelai Gilmore. She IS more or less Lorelai Gilmore. Her wit, the way she words and structures her thoughts and sentences, almost perfectly align with Lorelai's. It's rather remarkable. I've watched the show so many times , I could hear her voice clearly in my head. Pausing sentences exactly as she would, the rise and fall of her words in tune with how she would say them. It made my reading of this book that much more enjoyable.

Lauren's entire perspective on her life is both wise and entertaining. She knew what she wanted and she never really thought a whole lot about how she was going to get there or IF she was going to get there. She just worked her day jobs, took auditions, even if they weren't as great as a part as she'd hoped, just to get the experience, and she knew how far she was willing to go and how far she wasn't. She kept going, kept going, kept going until she "made it" and even then questioned whether she actually had or not.

It was incredibly touching to read about her time as Lorelai Gilmore. It means so much to me as a fan to know that this character had such a huge impact in her life and meant as much to her as she does to me. Most of my time watching the show, I always identified with Rory the most. But the older I've gotten, the more I understand Lorelai, even though I don't quite agree with everything she does. I love her independence and her strength, her wit and sass and quirkiness. And I aspire to be that kind of woman. And that's exactly who Lauren Graham is, and it shows through her writing. Even during the hard times, she endures and comes out ahead.

I loved seeing all of her old photos from childhood and days on sets. I loved that she even included an entire section about the stress of deadline for writing her books and how to write better (thank you, Lauren!). She also talks of her editor Jennifer E. Smith, who I am positive is the same Jennifer E. Smith who wrote one of my favorite books ever and I am SUPER jealous that one of my favorite authors has met one of my favorite actors and visa verse. I also loved that she told us about her embarrassing auditions, because they were indeed laugh out loud funny.

It was thrilling to get a little insight into the world and life of one of my most beloved characters actor, and from this point on I'm going to make it a habit of picking up more books from Lauren, and women like her. If you love Gilmore Girls, and/or Lauren Graham, I urge you to pick this up the next time you're out. You won't be disappointed.