YOURS CRUELLY, ELVIRA: MEMOIRS OF THE MISTRESS OF THE DARK by Cassandra Peterson

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When I was a kid, I knew who Elvira was in a peripheral sense…kind of like Svengoolie. I knew they were both big news during the Halloween season, and that they had funny but corny shticks. I think I was also aware that Elvira had bigger breasts than Svengoolie. 

Then, I was a teenager…reading horror movie magazines and always looking for the fun, low budget horror movies at Blockbuster or Hollywood Video. I came across an article on the making of Elvira’s Haunted Hills (the 2nd Elvira movie), rented it, fell in love, and the rest is history. 

Cassandra Peterson is the woman behind Elvira, and she really lets her guard down and opens up in this memoir of her life. 

From humble beginnings in a small town in Oregon, being burned by boiling water at 18 months old and having scars all over her body…to achieving her dream of being a Las Vegas showgirl…to singing in a rock band in Rome…to studying with the comedy group, the Groundlings…to getting a job on TV, playing b-grade and c-grade horror movie hostess Elvira on Movie Macabre…to Elvira becoming an international icon…to revealing a 19-year relationship with her girlfriend. 

Cassandra goes over all of these moments, using her trademark humor and apparent zest for life. The last 50 pages seem a bit rushed with a hodgepodge of stories, but for the most part, she really delves deep into each and every reveal. 

What I love is that it also covers many dark moments in her life, and shows how strong she was to overcome them. Cassandra is a fighter and has always followed her dreams. She has also managed to stay positive throughout many hardships, ending the book with a quote I love:

“We all have our own scars. Let them be a blessing and not a curse.”

2 thoughts on “YOURS CRUELLY, ELVIRA: MEMOIRS OF THE MISTRESS OF THE DARK by Cassandra Peterson

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