KATE: The Life of Katherine Hepburn by Charles Higham

KATE: The Life of Katherine Hepburn

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An adulatory fan-club treatment of the horsey madcap bluestocking who is ""the greatest actress of our time"" -- Katherine Hepburn. Higham's superficial chronology is filled out with quips and quotes from Cary Grant, Jimmy Stewart, George Cukor, Howard Hawks, Jed Harris, who describe her by turns as stagestruck or luminous, clumsy or graceful, thoroughbred or mannered, a beauty or a crow. . . . Her romances included Leland Hayward, Howard Hughes and, of course, Spencer Tracy. (Apparently, Kate is touchy about writer-director Garson Kanin's indiscreet 1972 Tracy and Hepburn, so Higham plays down the affair.) At 23, she won an Oscar, but her career was punctuated with flops, viz., The Lake which inspired Dorothy Parker's remark that Hepburn ""ran the gamut of emotions from A to B."" But those are so forgettable and who can forget Little Women, Bringing Up Baby, Philadelphia Story. The African Queen, Long Day's Journey Into Night? A thin portrait of stardom, Hollywood-style (""She's the Statue of Liberty, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Lady Luck . . . . There is nobody like her . . . . She's KATE."") from a writer with a knack for assembling a biography as speedily as if it were a quarterly report.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1975
Publisher: Norton