JUDY GARLAND by Anne Edwards


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Over the rainbow again, not only with feeling but with more of the Garland story than has been revealed in any of the earlier renditions. Miss Edwards, it will be remembered, is a light novelist but there doesn't seem to be too much fictionalizing (everything is referenced) even if there's a certain amount of psychohistory about Frances Ethel Gumm, the last and least of the three little gifts whose bereft childhood in hotel rooms on the road (neglected first, exploited later by her mother) caused her ""severe and irreparable damage as a human being and as a woman."" If her mother's not to be exonerated, neither is Louis B. Mayer who from the time he signed her up imposed that dreadful regimen of chicken soup, diet pills and Seconals so that when she came of age she was not only a pincushion of insecurities and inferiorities, but also hooked. There are the disastrous marriages and the crackups, the drugs and the debts and agonizing appearances which left her increasingly ravaged and shot (""I don't even have a clean bra to my name""). But then there was also the cult -- ""She is a great artist. She is Judy. She is the best there is."" And for that cult, Anne Edwards has told her story appropriately -- with a throb in the throat.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1975
Publisher: Simon & Schuster