Confessions Of A Prairie B****

On January 18, 1962 Alison Arngrim is born to loving, but dysfunctional parents, Norma MacMillan and Thor Arngrim. Thor Arngrim has an enormous craving for publicity and Norma is the voice for Casper the Friendly Ghost and Gumby which makes them successful Hollywood actors. Naturally, they both expect their children, Alison, and her older brother, Stefan, to go down the same career path as them. As soon as she can walk and talk, Alison is staring as minor roles in movies and commercials, until she gets her big break on “Little House on the Prairie.” Alison plays the character of Nellie Oleson, who is the devil in child form. Nellie is outspoken, foul-mouthed, hateful, and she is a straight up pain.

In reality, Alison is the complete opposite of her character Nellie. Having to deal with the sexual abuse her brother brings upon her and having a broken family, encloses her in a shell and in a world of secrets. She is shy, quiet, fearful, and humble. When Alison is in costume and her blonde wig with ringlets is placed upon her head, she feels like a completely different person. When Alison plays Nellie she gets to push people around, hit people, throw things, break things, and she gets to channel out all of the rage and anger she has been hiding inside. Alison feels like she has control for once in her life and she’s ruthless and fearless. For seven years of her life, being Nellie helps her cope with the sexual abuse and molestation she experiences and the family problems she encounters. The character of Nellie cracks Alison open from her shell. She makes various new life long friendships on The Little House set and it feels like her second home and the cast becomes her second family.

Yet, all good things come to an end, and so does Alison’s career on “Little House on the Prairie.” How will Alison deal with her relationship that is spiraling out of control , the death of her parents, and the death of her onscreen husband and real life best friend due to AIDS without her second family- and most of all, without her persona of Nellie? How will Alison cope with her problems now that she is not able to channel her anger out through Nellie anymore? Alison’s memoir is a heartfelt read filled with reality, but mixed with humor  Her writing style is unique and interesting which makes the book hard to put down. “Confessions of a Prairie B****” will appeal to anybody who wants to read a moving but humorous novel, especially Little House fans.