There I Go Again

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 31 Mar 2017

Member Reviews

I started this book last summer thanks to Netgalley providing me with an advance copy. Unfortunately, real life with college kept me away, so I needed to re-read and I'm glad I did. I would give this 4.5 stars. 

Overall, I found Mr. Daniels' writing style to my liking (though some might not). There was something about how he presented his life with his asides appealing to me and made him feel more like an everyday guy who struggled with the everyday happenings despite having become a well-known actor. Sometimes there were a lot of names given, and though sometimes I felt a bit overwhelmed by the amount, I did find it quite extraordinary just how well Mr. Daniels could recall these vary encounters he had decades before--it made me wonder how he could still remember. Sure, he's an actor who needed to memorize lines, etc., and maybe he has kept personal diaries or the like to help. Still, I found his life so interesting. I asked to receive an ARC based on the name of the book, especially because of KITT and Mr. Feeny in the title (plus I remembered him from St. Elsewhere and hoped this would be included and it was) and wanted to know more about this actor. I enjoyed his recount of the way he retold the way he was cast for the voice of KITT the most!

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading autobiographies told from a very down-to-earth point of view from an actor who seems, at least to me and my impression after reading, quite humble and genuine.

(for my own notes: began re-reading again from beginning June 1st and completed June 22nd, 2018)
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I never watched St Elsewhere or Knight Rider or Boy Meets World, but I knew William Daniels from other movies and tv and know him to be a wonderful character actor. This memoir tells of his start on Broadway & radio in NYC through his career in Hollywood. I enjoyed the stories, especially those about the movies & his costars. In the realm of celebrity memoirs, this one is ok, but not remarkable.  Although the content is likely new to readers, I suspect it's only because Daniels is not an "A-list" celebrity, so has not been all over the pages of People. An interesting read with some insight into child stars in the 30's and some fascinating anecdotes, but not likely to have a broad appeal.
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Overall reaction to the book? I love autobiographies to pieces and wish more celebrities and other prominent figures would write them. As it is I only know William Daniels as Mr. Feeny from Boy Meets World but that character made such an impact on me as a kid that I had to know more about the actor that portrayed him so well.


And what an interesting life Mr. Daniels has had.


From his early beginnings as a child actor, to Broadway, to tv, William Daniels’ life is one interesting experience after another. Through his roles, readers get to know the man behind them. He reveals which of his many characters is most like him, and which character he enjoyed playing the most.


There I Go Again isn’t all business though, it delves into Daniels’ personal life as well, giving readers a fascinating look into his start as a child actor. For example, he reveals that it was his mother who all but forced him and his siblings into performing. Her relentlessness caused him to suffer from an overwhelming amount of self doubt throughout his entire career, despite the fact that he has been one of the most successful actors out there. It was only years later and with the help of an analyst that he questioned why he never went against what his mother wanted for him. This is important to remember since it seems his mother’s insistence on a quality performance may have played a role in Daniels’ way of picking what characters he would and would not play.


I could go on and on about what he discusses but it would inevitably fall short of what and how this book is written. Even though he has worked with some very notable people in his long career and has undoubtedly seen and heard some interesting things behind the scenes, Daniels is not a gossip. He doesn’t tell all about anyone which is great because There I Go Again is an autobiography of HIS life, not a chance to rat out fellow actors. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t get candid about the industry, he does, but it mostly pertains to his various work environments involving directors and producers.


He is unapologetically candid about himself as well. He spends time discussing the rough spots in his life, his marriage, and his career without trying to sugar coat anything or make himself look like the victim in every scenario. To some it may portray him as a difficult person, and that may be true but to me it showed him to be a real human being, not a fake product of the acting industry. As much as I love a fun character, at the end of the day that’s all it is, a character. Not the measure of a person.


By the end of the book I realized that William Daniels, or Bill as he refers to himself, isn’t just another actor, he’s a man who has done his rounds with and gotten roughed up a bit by life and has come out on the other side with quite a bit of insight and wisdom. That’s not something everyone can do. He is his own man but in a way he’s a little bit of all the characters he’s played too.


Click It or Skip It? Click It. This is one autobiography that sticks to what an autobiography should be.
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This is such an interesting book about the life of William Daniels from the time he was a child and on through his many years of performing. His mother was a "stage mom", pushing him to stick with it when he didn't want to act or sing or dance but just wanted to be a "normal" child. He laments about missing out on his childhood, but he also talks about the many experiences - both good and not-so-good - he had through the years.of his career. 
Readers will remember him as the schoolteacher, Mr. Feeny, in Boy Meets World, or the voice of KITT the talking car in Knight Rider, or Dr. Craig in St. Elsewhere. He had many roles and met and worked with many other famous people through the years. 
His mother was not happy about his marriage to fellow actor Bonnie Bartlett, but their marriage has lasted for decades, she being his loyal partner, encourager, and grounding,  
Mr. Daniels wrote this book with a natural conversational style, taking the reader through his life without leaving out the things that still bother him and the things he found most troublesome about other actors or the jobs he had. 
He's a very interesting and talented man.
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INTERESTING LIFE

Most of us have grown up with William Daniels in one form or another be it TV or films. The problem is if you asked someone if they like William Daniels the odds are that they wouldn’t know him by name. Once you showed them his picture there is little doubt they’d recognize him immediately.

Daniels has been acting since the sixties in films and on TV, most recognizably in the film 1776 and the TV series ST. ELSEWHERE and BOY MEETS WORLD. My first memories of him was a short lived television comedy called CAPTAIN NICE. I still think it was an underrated show. But the fact is most of us don’t know the stories that took place behind the scenes. Daniels wasn’t one of those stars to make a splash when off camera. No scandals and no protests. And yet he was a well-respected member of his craft having been the president of the Screen Actors Guild at one time.

This autobiography tells the story of how he came into acting, his family life before that and during. It talks about the various interests he’s had other than acting. It talks about the politics of organizations like the Screen Actors Guild. And it tells the story of a man who was fortunate enough to land in a profession that he loved. 

I for one was completely unaware that he was married to Bonnie Bartlett since 1951. Such a long marriage is rare in the acting field and something to be proud of. Perhaps I wasn’t aware because their marriage and lifestyle wasn’t one that garnered the attention of the paparazzi. Good news for both of them.

In the end the book was an entertaining read. Daniels writes well and covers his entire life. It made me come to appreciate him more.
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William Daniels is one of my favorite actors. I was thrilled when I saw that this book was being offered by NetGalley and University of Nebraska Press for my honest review. 

To read his story from all of the shows that I have seen in him was fantastic. This book was wonderfully written and I loved each page. Thank you for allowing me to become better acquainted with you Mr. Daniels.

Also thank you for NetGalley and University of Nebraska Press for allowing me to receive this book in exchange for my honest review. 

This book may be found on Amazon HERE! and on Barnes and Noble HERE!
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First off let me state that I am not a particular fan of Mr. Daniels. I don't mean that I dislike his work or have anything against him, I am just saying that I have never sought out anything simply because he was in it. 

I was only vaguely aware of his career prior to reading this book and most of what I was familiar with was the television work. I had no idea that he had been a child performer, was on a show in the early days of radio or really much at all about his stage career. I simply chose this book because it seemed like it might be interesting.

Mr. Daniels relates how he began his entertainment career as a "song-and-dance-man" around the age of four and became part of a family act with his two younger sisters before branching out into acting in the theater.  He takes you through his career as a young actor up to starring on Broadway and then the move to television which made him familiar to a wide audience.

The book is told in an easy to read conversational style, a bit curmudgeonly but I think that's just Mr. Daniels personal style showing through. It was interesting to share some of his experiences of the old days in show business, it would have been nice if he would have gone a little bit more in depth on some of the great old stars that he met and worked with but you can't have everything.

All in all, There I Go Again is an interesting book about someone who quite literally spent almost his entire life in show business. If youre a fan of one of his television shows looking for deeper insight into what is was like making those shows or working with those casts you will almost certianly be disappointed as he touches only briefly on his television series.

***Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me the opportunity to read and review this title.
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As much as I like William Daniels and was eager to learn more about him, the book wasn't all that engaging. Also, if you're a Boy Meets World fan, like me, you'll find his chapter on it disappointing. He doesn't mention much about his time with the show aside from how he got the job. I understand the show doesn't make up Daniels' entire career, but it's a big part of it and I'm sure other readers were hoping to hear more about his time with there.
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I knew William Daniels had been in a number of things but I will always know and love him as Mr. Feeny. I am a child of ABCs Friday Night Family and grew up on Boy Meets World. (Let's ignore the abomination that is the sequel). His dry delivery never failed to tickle me and his underlying warmth brought a tear to my eye, especially in the finale (omg when he touches that desk!!!). 

BUT I was very impressed to learn that he has been in show business nearly his entire life, thanks to his domineering stage mother Irene. Lord Irene, many a therapist has probably put their kids through college thanks to the number Irene did on Mr. Daniels. I do like that amount of introspection he has and the openness he shared about undergoing counseling, the problematic periods in his marriage, the loss of his first child (heartbreaking!!) and the adoption of his two sons. He is able to cover his life in enough detail for the reader without overwhelming us with minutiae, something other "stars" sometimes have trouble with (we know you're famous but we don't literally need to know EVERYTHING). Great vignettes about his work and personal life are sprinkled throughout the factual recountings keeping the book interesting and well-paced.

His sense of humor and warmth came through as he often poked fun at himself, admitting he has stumbled somewhat ass-backwards into some of his biggest roles, and even while sharing negative stories about others is able to point out some of their positive characteristics and try to see things from their point of view. It was cool to read about all of the people he has met and worked with during his career. I thought this was a great example of how an autobiography should be done.
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I enjoyed reading all about Mr. Daniel's adventures in acting. He has certainly lived an interesting life and has met so many great actors. He is of course is a great actor himself. I especially enjoyed chapters discussing his personal life. I also loved to read about his experience on Boy Meets World.
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William Daniels is such an interesting man. Of course like many others I read this for Boy Meets World insight. I wasn't expecting such a well-rounded read. Not only does he talk about his well-known roles but also delves into child acting. Just...what a life! Truly a great autobiography that was hard to put down.
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Review was declined. Thank you for the opportunity.
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I knew of William Daniels mostly from Boy Meets World and while I knew he'd been in other big shows, they weren't any that I watched. Reading about his prolific career was such a treat! I found him very charming and down to earth in this quick read!
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As soon as I saw this book was written by Bill Daniels, I knew I had to read it.  My introduction to Mr. Daniels was the stereotypical millennial path via Boy Meets World.  From there, I fell in love with the man that played Mr. Feeny and set out to watch all of his movies and shows.  I fell in love with Bill Daniels all over again when, within seconds of picking up his memoir, I read:

"I wrote this manuscript in longhand on yellow legal pads, so I have to first thank Rachael Lobermann, who spent many hours typing it all up . . . Laurie Horowitz took the typed pages and made them resemble something that looked like a book, with paragraphs and everything.”

This book reads exactly as any longtime fan would expect.  Daniels is to the point and matter of fact, leaving little room to doubt or misinterpret his true feelings.  My heart broke a little bit when Daniels told the story of his early years in show business.  There is bitterness is his voice as he recounts his somewhat abusive childhood at the hands of his mother who lives vicariously through her children's forced performances on stage, screen, and eventually television.  It is a side of Daniels that often comes out in his blustery, non-nonsense characters, but the back story gives context to the man behind the mask.

I cried a little bit (not even kidding) while reading the chapters on Daniels time as Mr. Feeny.  That show meant so much to me during my middle school and high school years.  I often longed for my own real-life Mr. Feeny but was more than happy to settle for Daniels words of wisdom.  To know that the show touched the actors in much the same way was moving.

The real cherry on top was the interview with Lin-Manuel Miranda as an epilogue.  I'm a huge fan of Hamilton and Miranda is a huge fan of 1776 so it was a really great intersection for man Bill Daniels fans.  It was one of the main reasons why I ran out and immediately recommended this book to another longtime Mr. Feeny fan and Hamilton enthusiast.

Finally, what was even more moving than reading about Daniels' memories of Broadway, radio, and television, was discovering that he truly is a deeply caring and devoted person.  His dedication to his wife and children is so, so beautiful.  Bill Daniels memoir presents a man who is genuine which is incredibly difficult to find in this world of false celebrity and reality television stars.

I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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I'm a child of the 80s and a teenager of the 90s, so William Daniels is Mr. Feeny & KITT to me. 

I loved his memoir! I found his story- which he wrote in longhand, to be transcribed for print - engaging, and I feel I learned a lot about the actor behind the "Hey, aren't you that guy?" face. 

From his start as a child actor to his two years as SAG president, Bill Daniels tells us candidly about his roles, both personal and professional, over the past eight decades in show business. It's an impressive run and a worthwhile read. 

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the review copy.
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There I Go Again was everything I wanted and expected it to be. Mr. Daniels has been a part of my life since I was a kid - from St. Elsewhere - Knight Rider - Boys Meets World - Girl Meets World. It was a pleasure to have Mr. Daniels share his life stories with us. There are so many gems in the book - that I plan on purchasing the hard cover once it's release. This is definitely a book I can read more than once.
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Whether you call him John Adams, Dr. Mark Craig, Kitt, or Mr. Feeney this book will let you see how his early life and career, made him into the actor and person that generations of people have gotten to watch over the years through his presence on stage, tv, and movies.
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I knew William Daniels from St. Elsewhere, Knight Rider, Boy Meets World, and countless appearances on other television shows. But what I didn't know is that that is only the tip of the iceberg. 

Starting out as a school-aged "song and dance man," Daniels has worked in show business for over eighty years. He went from the Broadway stage into the Army, then off to Northwestern to study theater, and on to New York to figure out how to be a working actor. It was there, in Lee Strasberg's acting class, that he finally learned what it meant to be an actor, not just an entertainer. From there, everything changed. 

His career went on to include lots more Broadway plays and musicals, films, television, and a stint as President of the Screen Actors Guild. His dedication to his art, his craft, and his family took him through the lean years to the award-winning years and brought him every success, even when he had to be dragged there by others. His new memoir, There I Go Again, is packed with stories from throughout his amazing career.

It's certainly not a how-to book for aspiring actors, as Daniels' penchant for turning down jobs is a habit even he sees as self-destructive, but fortunately for all of us, others had the good sense to talk him into changing his mind. (Seriously, who says no to Mike Nichols offering you a part in The Graduate?!) And while his career choices may not be what you expect, they are always fascinating and keep you reading until the end. This is a compelling read for actors and fans. 



Galleys for There I Go Again were provided by the publisher through NetGalley,com.
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I've always enjoyed memoirs by celebrities and this was no exception.  It's fun to see 'behind the scenes' and get an idea of what people are really like.

William Daniels isn't someone I would consider a 'big star', but rather someone who seems to be a dependable and accomplished actor (and isn't that actually better than just being 'a star'?)  He's one of those actors that most people won't know by name but they'll recognize his face.  And his voice!

I especially enjoyed the accounts of Daniels' interactions with other actors and learning which ones are the 'good guys' and which ones aren't.

A well-written, entertaining read.
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