Writer, producer and often actor in the 120 plays which made him the idol of Paris for over fifty years--with a short remission, Sacha Guitry was also an ironist, collector, passionate gambler and charmer. In short, a dragonfly. As a youngster under the influence of Madame Sarah, he determined to go on the stage where father Lucien was a prominent performer. He married five times, including Yvonne temps, exhausting all of his wives, and assuring his last, very young acquisition that she would be his widow. His closest friends were Cocteau, Monet and Tristan Bernard, although a great many others figure in this biography (his own memoirs are no longer in print) and he was obviously a very facile figure of enormous wit and elegance. (His apothegems appear throughout--""As for the man who runs away with your wife, there's no worse punishment than to let him keep her. . .""). The one cloudy hiatus, his trial and imprisonment as a collaborator--""Gestapette""--is diminished here. Mr. Harding writes pleasantly enough, but M. Guitry usurps the stage throughout.