There are intermittent moments of joy, but more often there is sadness, shame, self-loathing and fury, all of which makes for compelling but discomfiting reading. ... In this visceral and affecting memoir, she seizes the opportunity to fill in the gaps and create a three-dimensional self-portrait that is far removed from Cartoon Lily.
...Lily Allen dissects the myths that a male-dominated music industry has allowed to accrue about celebrity, sex and drug abuse. My Thoughts Exactly (Blink, £20) is one of the most self-critical and self-aware pop star memoirs of the decade. In a genre dominated by denial, buck passing and self-justification, it’s a blessed relief to read a celebrity admit that she’s a gobby narcissist with an unregulated appetite for attention. Although Allen fails to acknowledge the professional advantages of having well-connected parents, you can’t deny the sadness of a childhood spent in the “care” of adults who were either absent or off their heads on booze and pills.
I wanted to really like My Thoughts Exactly (excellent title) and in lots of ways I did. But it’s as uneven as a non-league footballl pitch.
At best, reading it felt like spending time with a ridiculous, outrageous friend. At worst, it was like being left stranded with a girl you just met at the campsite on the last day of a festival. She, quite simply, won’t stop talking, and no small amount of what she is saying is questionable. It’s always, and I mean always, about Allen. She admits to being a narcissist.
Like all good drama queens, Allen has a flair for storytelling...The book should be required reading for anyone – any girl – who dreams of fame. The music business is littered with casualties. This is a survivor’s tale.