Lessons From the Mountain by Mary McDonough

Lessons From the Mountain

For nine seasons, Mary McDonough was part of one of the most beloved families in television history. Just ten years-old when she was cast as the pretty, wholesome middle child Erin, Mary grew up on the set of The Waltons, alternately embracing and rebelling against her good-girl onscreen persona. Now, as the first cast member to write about her experiences on the classic series, she candidly recounts the joys and challenges of growing up Walton--...

Details Lessons From the Mountain

TitleLessons From the Mountain
Release DateApr 1st, 2011
GenreBiography, Autobiography, Memoir, Nonfiction

Reviews Lessons From the Mountain

  • Lorrie
    I was (and still am) a huge Waltons fan. I don't live too far from Schuyler, Virginia, where Earl Hamner grew up. I was excited to read this book.I was a bit disappointed. The majority of the book had nothing to do with "Walton's Mountain"; I guess I found the title of the book somewhat deceptive. I thoroughly enjoyed her commentary about the show and growing up as a child actor. Still, after 9 seasons, I felt she could have devoted more of the b...
  • Kimberly
    I picked up this book, hoping to find some guilty pleasure reading about my favorite Walton girl, Erin. Unfortunately, I found the book fell well short of my expectations. McDonough gives snippets of information about her fellow castmates from The Waltons, often writing no more than a paragraph or two about her memories of each. Throughout the book, she describes her various insecurities which led to a lifetime of self-doubt. This includes severa...
  • Corey
    After my Mom died when I was 13 many things changed in my life, one of the most influential being that the remote was passed from my dying mother to my father. We never were the family that had multiple tvs in the household so whatever was on was what you watched or you found something else to do. In the early 90's my Dad found reruns of The Waltons on tv and every weeknight for two hours (via two different channels) I watched The Waltons. In the...
  • Jamison
    erin was the walton who was sort of...vague. she wasn't a tomboy. she didn't have long, fiery hair, and get into trouble. she didn't play piano. she didn't have a sink-hole on her cheek. she was just...there.the actress who played her is...nice. and she thinks everyone in the cast was... nice. and she thinks her life in the future could turn out...nice.just don't get her started on lupus. or breast implants. (never never never gonna get breast im...
  • Tabb
    I just finished watching the 9 seasons of The Waltons plus all the movies so I felt I just had to read this book. I read reviews on goodreads beforehand and they made the book sound shallow, as if all she talked about was breast implant awareness etc...and yeah she does touch on that but the book was also bursting with other goodness! I definitely got my full of behind the scenes stuff and stories of her growing up on the show. I love how she nev...
  • Kris
    After my Nellie Oelson bio delight, I thought I'd go with a Waltons bio,as I enjoyed both shows. Alas, lightning didn't strike twice. Her anecdotes about the show were slim,and that's what I wanted. It was really more about her poor self-esteem,eating disorder and early breast implants. Oh wait - they made her sick,now it's about her crusade against something she never should have gotten in the first place. On top of that,it was poorly written.I ...
  • BJ
    "Lessons from the Mountain" is the first book written by any of the Walton's TV show stars. Mary McDonough who played middle-sister, Erin does a good job of combining the story of her activism concerning lupus and silicone breast implants with anecdotes from her days growing up on the Walton's. She is not out to ruin any reputations of her cast members, so if you are looking for dirt, this is not the book to read! In general, she seems to have lo...
  • Debbie
    This autobiography is written by Mary McDonough, better know to many of us as Erin Walton. The behind the scenes information about filming the Waltons is interesting and fun. After finishing the show, Mary struggled with insecurities and depression which lead to some unpleasant consequences. Her honesty and openness about her struggles is to be admired. Sometimes the book is difficult to follow -- not always sequential and many of the people she ...
  • Holly
    I bought the book to begin with because I like Mary. She has always been appreciative of her Waltons experience and obviously loves her co-stars but still didn't make it seem like her life was perfect just because she was on a very popular tv show. I admire her writing, her courage in being truthful and telling her story. I loved the book on its own merit because it changed me and how I look at myself and the world around me. And it did have enou...
  • Carolynne
    Mary played Erin Walton on the TV show about "The Waltons." If you enjoyed the show, you'll enjoy this. Not unexpectedly, in view of the challenges most child actors face as the become adults, she has had to face numerous difficulties, including serious complications from breast implants which have apparently affected not only her own life but that of her daughter Sydnee.Her fight to make manufacturers of implants accountable for their products i...
  • Vikki
    Since The Walton's is my all time favorite television show, I totally enjoyed reading Mary Beth's behind the scenes accounts. Also, I enjoyed getting to know "little" Mary, pre, mid, and post Erin Walton. I was privileged to meet Mary at a book signing a few weeks ago. I have to say, she is so warm and inviting. Very down to earth. Now I am looking forward to reading her fiction series.
  • Terry Coffman
    The Waltons was one of my favorite shows and I've watched many of the episodes several times, so it was interesting to read about what things were like on the Walton's set and how the actors interacted together. McDonough became an advocate for women who suffered after having breast implants since she was a victim of implants gone wrong.
  • Julie Barrett
    lessons from the mountain by mary mcdonough , tales of background scenes while filmingdifferent episodes of waltons mountain. all the things i learned, wow just in time for mytrip south to visit the waltons museum in a few weeks.
  • Terri
    Very much enjoyed this memoir! It's about so much more than Mary's days on The Walton's, although I did enjoy all the little tidbits a lot.I particularly enjoyed reading how Mary found her identity, followed her path and and ultimately, found her destiny. Highly recommend this memoir.
  • Stephanie
    This book was great! I'm a long time Walton's fan and loved reading about Mary's experiences then and now.
  • Amy Lignor
    For anyone (like me) who was a great fan of The Walton’s (That, and Little House kept me going throughout my grade school years), this is not only a book that will bring you back to that time, it is also a fascinating and amazing memoir of a little girl who became a part of a huge, fast-paced world.Mary McDonough played Erin on that set – after starring in the movie The Homecoming - which came out on television and was the start of one of the...
  • Mediaman
    This book is the kind that people who loved a TV show like The Waltons will love--it is filled with plenty of behind-the-scenes stories about the series from the childhood memory of one of the kids. However, the writing is extremely weak, the timeline jumps around to the point where she goes off on recent tangents in the middle of old stories, and the writer's liberal political/religious views unnecessarily infuse sections. Then about two-thirds ...
  • Joanna Wilson
    I was fortunate to have an opportunity to get my own personal copy of the book signed by the author last December. If you'll remember, I attended the 40th anniversary screening of the Christmas TV movie "The Homecoming" last year and I served as the moderator at that event for The Waltons cast reunion.Waltons fans will be delighted to discover that McDonough's book is chock full of details about her experiences during the ten year run of the hit ...
  • Shari Larsen
    Mary McDonough is best known from the TV show The Waltons; she played the part of Erin Walton for 9 seasons. I grew up watching this show, and it's still one of my favorites. I enjoyed reading about what it was like to grow up while being part of the show, and the things that happened behind the scenes.It was not always easy being a child star; while Mary talks about the down side of the business, she is still very appreciative of the opportuniti...
  • Lori
    an almost four. I liked watching the Waltons back when they were on in the 1970s.I was a kid myself then and reading this book brings back some memories of the Waltons. Mary McDonough gave some fun accounts on her nine years as Erin Walton.she had fond memories of growing up working on that show and has nice things to say about the whole cast.she also mentions some of the other child actors she met growing up and became friends with.she also talk...
  • Susan
    As a child I was a Walton's Mountain "nut"! I wanted to live there and have a family just like Ma and Pa Walton. So I thoroughly enjoyed having a look into the "Walton Family" and the making of that television show. Mary McDonough, who played Erin, also gives a glimpse into her own life as a child actress. The book also takes a turn as Mary shares with readers her "life after the Mountain." Mary, developed lupus as an adult and was a victim of th...
  • Beverly
    I met Mary McDonough at the Southern Kentucky Bookfest where she was promoting her book. I was a huge Waltons fan and was so excited to actually get to talk to her and say "goodnight, Erin." when I left--like she hasn't heard that a million times. She was so lovely and sweet and her book is just like that. It's amazing to have seen her on the show, know about her success and learn how "insecure" she felt about so many things. I loved the first pa...
  • Lorna
    While helping a boy find a biography in the M's, I found this book. Erin Walton wrote a book - get out! You see, I AM Erin Walton! OK, not really, but I filled that role in my family. I had the older sister much like Mary Ellen and the cute little sister Elizabeth. I was the freckle-faced one in the middle. (We also had John-Boy, the eldest son, but I guess they forgot to have Jason, Ben and Jim-Bob.) So I always felt an affinity for her. It was ...
  • Edwin Martin
    I went to the library Monday before 11am, and by closing time at 5pm, I had read the last 80-90% of this book, so I'm saying I finished it. Only part I didn't read was the part before she was cast to play Erin Walton at age 10 in THE HOMECOMING.Nice nostalgic look back at the best true American family TV show ever made. Best because it's realistic in both the mother and father characters. And Grandparents as well. If you didn't grow up with this ...
  • Karen
    The title was deceiving. I liked learning about the other aspects of her life but it was a bit off topic for what the cover proposed. It was written in a way that was more like a conversation that quickly jumps from one topic to another. Like many of chats go when girlfriends gets together. Lol. It was a bit of a pain at times to keep reading, but I still enjoyed it since I like Mary. If you are looking for Waltons info,you will get some, but mai...
  • Devika Koppikar
    As a Walton fan, I had to read this book to learn about the story behind the taping of this wonderful show. It was interesting to learn what was going on behind the scenes:* How hard Mary tried to "cry" for the first time - during the Easter Story episode.* What it was like to kiss Ashley Longworth and how they had to put ice in their mouths to avoid fogging up the air during the cold months.There were also some sad behind-the-scenes stories - li...
  • Summer Lane
    I guess being a Walton doesn't make life perfect. This is a sweet, interesting look into the life of Mary McDonough, the girl/lady who played Erin Walton on 'The Waltons.' I've been watching this show since I was a little girl, so naturally when my mom read the book I had to read it, too. I was expecting maybe a little bit more information on the actual filming experience of being on the television show, but that's just me. Mary spends a huge por...
  • Betty
    It's interesting that many people were disappointed that the book wasn't a tell all about Walton's Mountain. While I've always been a big Waltons fan and enjoyed reading about McDonough's recollections, I found the book to be so much more. In fact, I recognized many "mountains" that are relevant to lots of people. Maybe you don't have an eating disorder, but you can gleam some insights into that problem and how one person dealt with it. Same is t...
  • Annemariemcbrearty
    Found this book a little disappointing it was nothing like I expected. I was a big fan of the show growing up and was really looking forward to a trip down memory lane. The book starts off very promising, reading about her time on the show was enjoyable but I expected a little but more, from the middle of the book I got a bit bored. She talks a lot about the problems she had with her breast implants, her fight to help other woman although commend...
  • Meg
    I really enjoyed reading Mary's memoir. I learned a lot about the entertainment industry and enjoyed hearing about the closeness of the actors who played on The Walton's. Mary and I grew up very similarly as Catholics in Catholic school and even attended the same high school; though in different decades. I came to see things from an interfaith perspective much later in life and enjoyed hearing how she learned of it so young. It was a completely d...