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Making a Scene


About The Book

From actor Constance Wu, a powerful and poignant memoir-in-essays.

Growing up in the friendly suburbs of Richmond, Virginia, Constance Wu was often scolded for having big feelings or strong reactions. “Good girls don’t make scenes,” people warned her. And while she spent most of her childhood suppressing her bold, emotional nature, she found an early outlet in local community theater—it was the one place where big feelings were okay—were good, even. Acting became her refuge, her touchstone, and eventually her vocation. At eighteen she moved to New York, where she’d spend the next ten years of her life auditioning, waiting tables, and struggling to make rent before her two big breaks: the TV sitcom Fresh Off the Boat and the hit film Crazy Rich Asians.

Through raw and relatable essays, Constance shares private memories of childhood, young love and heartbreak, sexual assault and harassment, and how she “made it” in Hollywood. Her stories offer a behind-the-scenes look at being Asian American in the entertainment industry and the continuing evolution of her identity and influence in the public eye. Making a Scene is an intimate portrait of pressures and pleasures of existing in today’s world.

About The Author

Photograph © Mark Seigler

Constance Wu is the Golden Globe Award–nominated star of Crazy Rich Asians and Hustlers. Her breakthrough role was starring as Jessica Huang in the television comedy Fresh Off the Boat (2015–2020). She has been nominated for the Screen Actors Guild award, two Television Critics Association awards, and four Critics Choice awards. Time has honored her as one of the 100 Most Influential People of the Year. She lives on the east side of Los Angeles with her partner, Ryan Kattner, their daughter, and their pet bunny rabbit, Lida-Rose.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Scribner (October 4, 2022)
  • Length: 336 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781982188566

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Raves and Reviews

“Wu wisely aligns poignant childhood anecdotes with new adult lessons… Generously sharing experiences of love, family, harassment, discrimination, and growth, Wu writes about others and her past self with the utmost respect. Her memoir is a gorgeously relatable portrait of a life guided by passion and art.”
Booklist, *starred review*


"Intimate and rich in emotional detail…thoughtful and often inspirational.”
—Kirkus Reviews

"Wu dazzles in this essay collection about love, family, and her hard-won path to Hollywood success... her determination radiates from every page."
Publishers Weekly

“Constance Wu writes with originality, ferocity, and unsparing honesty that doesn't let anyone — especially herself — off the hook. Making A Scene is as much about acting as it is about heartbreak, forgiveness, and being messily human. It made me laugh and it made my heart hurt; it reminded me of how necessary — and life giving — art is. This is a vital book by a singular talent.”  
Rachel Khong, author of Goodbye, Vitamin 

“There were times when I was reading Making a Scene that I didn’t realize I was holding my breath; it’s that riveting and personal. Making a Scene is a treasure and so is Constance Wu. I feel so lucky to call this talented and hilarious woman my friend.”
Mindy Kaling, author of Why Not Me? 

"Constance Wu is a beautiful writer, a hilarious storyteller, and unafraid to tell the truth about her experiences. Don't miss Making a Scene."
Amy Schumer, author of The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo

"Making a Scene was one of the most captivating and honest books I’ve read in years, and I found it difficult to put down. Constance’s sharp and gorgeously observed ability to speak her truth, unforgivingly and often hilariously, gave me goosebumps, tears, gasps, and belly laughs. She details the things in life that never quite leave us, and that truly form us: heartbreak, struggle, hopelessness and the eventual discovery and ownership of our self-worth."

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