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Peter Lawford

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  112 ratings  ·  9 reviews
The seminal biography of legendary actor Peter Lawford. As Publisher's Weekly writes: From Bobby-Sox idol to Kennedy spouse and Marylin Monroe intimate, his life was a dizzying whirl of sex, scandal, an secrets even the tabloids dared not print... Once, Peter Lawford seemed to have it all: a handsome face, a sophisticated wit, a talent that won him overnight stardom and en ...more
Published December 27th 2011 by Author & Company (first published June 1st 1991)
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The most brutal of the books about Sinatra's Rat Pack is this biography of Peter Lawford. Brother-in-law to JFK, MGM contract player and, for awhile, a member of Frank Sinatra's own personal roundtable, Lawford was privy to some of the major points in mid-fifties pop culture history. This is also one of the books that Shawn Levy's "Rat Pack Confidential: Frank, Dean, Sammy, Peter, Joey and the Last Great Show Biz Party" lifted so freely from. If you've read that one, trust me, pick up the Lawfor ...more
Spada has pieced this all together for us. It's a mamoth effort. Its lack of footnotes can be mostly excused because the narrative holds together and has power.

In summary: an inconvenient but necessary child to his mother becomes a necessary and inconvenient inlaw.

Lawford's childhood and family stories are astounding. This history includes sexual abuse, an inherited tendancy to addiction and emotional highs and lows. Your heart goes out to Peter as a little boy. The cards are stacked against him
Far more interesting than I was expecting. All I knew of Lawford was an amazingly drunken performance (alongside an equally pickled Jack Palance) in the Charlie's Angels ripoff "Angels' Revenge." The MST3K crew rightfully skewered both the movie and Lawford, so this was more of a curiosity piece. I ended up reading this in a few sittings, as his Hollywood career and paling around with the Kennedys and Sinatra got him both as much influence as misery. He was a reasonably decent guy that, I felt, ...more
Peter Lawford was handsome and world-famous. He had money, celebritiy friends and married into the Kennedy family but, by the end of the book, I felt such sadness for him.

His mother was indifferent and/or cruel to him... his friendships ended with tragedy - he felt tremendous guilt over the death of Marilyn Monroe and was devastated when JFK was assassinated. Frank Sinatra treated him terribly and may have even had him blackballed in the entertainment industry.

By the end of the 1960s, Lawford w
Jan 16, 2008 Lance rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who want a fly on the wall perspective of hollywood's elite in the 50s and 60s.
This was an interesting biography of a man who was at the center of the Hollywood tempest in the 1960s. Not only was Lawford a member of the Rat Pack, but he also married into the Kennedy family and was close friends with Marilyn Monroe. The subtitle of this book is The Man Who Kept The Secrets because he never talked much about what he knew, (and the evidence shows he knew quite a bit). Even though this isn't a tell-all biography, it still proves quite interesting.
Interesting account of Peter Lawford's life. I'd gotten some glimpses from another biography on The Rat Pack, but this book goes even deeper and reveals more. I haven't yet gotten to the part of his life where he pals up with Sinatra and marries into the Kennedy clan...I'm sure it will get even more interesting.
Laura Van Wormer
I haven't been this immersed in a Hollywood biography like this in a long time (Gerold Frank's JUDY). Meticulously researched with tons of new information on JFK, RFK and Marilyn Monroe.
More dirt on what really was going on in the Kennedy era. Not Camelot, but a dark and evil web of money, sex and deceit. For more, see Nemesis by Peter Evans.
Jul 05, 2009 Candi marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I am beginning this book today
I have had it for a very long time-but just now have the time to read
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As a thirteen-year-old kid in Staten Island, James Spada started the first Marilyn Monroe Memorial Fan Club. He produced four bulletins and one yearbook a year for four years, when he had to disband the club due to lack of money.

In college he founded EMK: The Edward M. Kennedy Quarterly, and worked as an intern in Senator Kennedy’s Boston office in 1970.

At 23 his first book, Barbra: The First Deca
More about James Spada...
Bette Davis Grace: Secret Lives of a Princess Monroe: Her Life in Pictures Streisand: Her Life Jackie: Her Life in Pictures

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