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Mary Wickes: I Know I'...
 
by
Steve Taravella
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Mary Wickes: I Know I've Seen That Face Before

3.44 of 5 stars 3.44  ·  rating details  ·  36 ratings  ·  9 reviews
Moviegoers know her as the housekeeper in "White Christmas," the nurse in "Now, Voyager," and the crotchety choir director in "Sister Act." This book, filled with never-published behind-the-scenes stories from Broadway and Hollywood, chronicles the life of a complicated woman who brought an assortment of unforgettable nurses, nuns, and housekeepers to life on screen and st ...more
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Published May 17th 2013 by University Press of Mississippi
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Biblio Files
What a surprise this book was. I guess I was expecting something like one of Mary Wickes' movies -- light entertainment, amusing, inconsequential. Steve Taravella's biography of Wickes is serious and rigorous, even academic. That's not to say it's a tough read, but it is a tough-minded biography. Quite often, celebrity bios are written by smitten fans, but Taravella is dispassionate and fair.

The result is a portrait of a Mary Wickes who is sharper-edged than I imagined. Taravella starts with th
...more
Michael Ritchie
Bio of memorable character actress Mary Wickes, whose career ran from Miss Preen, the befuddled nurse in The Man Who Came to Dinner in 1940 to the Sister Act movies in the 90s. I like Wickes but this book does her a disservice. She appears not to have led a terribly interesting life, so the book should perhaps have focused more tightly on her acting, but instead the author uses seemingly every bit of every interview he conducted to pad out the book. For example, it's not enough to suggest that W ...more
Harvey Solomon
Relegated to supporting roles throughout her long career, Mary Wickes is perfectly captured in this especially well-titled biography, "I Know I've Seen That Face Before."

Bigger name stars, of course, are often the subject of multiple biographies. So it's a testament to author Steve Taravella who singled out this veteran supporting player -- a most memorable, salty one at that -- for an exhaustively researched, entertainingly written book.

Many biographers string together oft-told, second-hand sto
...more
librarian4Him02
I remember seeing Mary Wickes in Where Angels Go Trouble Follows and the Sister Act movies, but she's been in so many more. Some of those I've even seen like White Christmas and Moonlight Bay. She was also in one of my favorite episodes of I Love Lucy and I didn't even realize it.

Taravella chronicles the life of this beloved character actress who truly made a mark on Hollywood. Sadly, not many people know her by name when they see her in her movies. In fact, the year she passed away she was lef
...more
Polly
I'm giving this 5 stars because I'm so glad it exists! Someone needed to write a book on Mary Wickes - she's in so many of my favorite movies! This was a great insight into the woman behind all those characters. I was especially interested to read about the close relationship between Ms. Wickes and Lucille Ball and her family.
John Reilly
Mary Wickes' life wasn't one of high drama but I'm glad that this great character actress gets the attention she deserves in this well researched biography.
Gary Shapiro
Although an interesting story, not really enough here to sustain a whole book.
Anne
Learn a lot about this wonderful actress
Wanda
Ok biography.
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