PLAYING THE FIELD: My Story by Mamie with Art Aveilhe Van Doren

PLAYING THE FIELD: My Story

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Mamie's likable kiss-and-tell life story has all the zip and guts of a Jackie Collins novel--and just about the same intellectual weight. Some days before going to bed with hotel millionaire playboy Nicky Hilton (then Elizabeth Taylor's ex-husband), Mamie explained to her heavy-drinking new boyfriend, ""I just don't see any reason why a woman shouldn't have the same rights as a man when it comes to playing the field."" And play the field Mamie does, giving us between-the-sheets scorecards on her affairs with Rock Hudson (!), Steve McQueen (self-centered but passionate), Joe Namath (macho but gentle), Bo Belinsky, trumpeter Ray Anthony (who married her), Jack Dempsey (who thought only of himself--and so she later played a fake abortion scam on him which netted her $1000 for a ticket to L.A.), and many others. Several who tried but did not land her at exactly the right moment include Cary Grant (she just could not endure his idea of a good time, i.e., being homebodies rather than highsteppers), Warren Beatty (her funniest pages, with Warren forever alluding to his fantastic organ while phoning in medias erectum), Frank Sinatra (who is too busy arguing and partying to attend to business), Elvis (pre-bloato), and James Dean. (Chapter 23, devoted to her escapades with Butt Reynolds, called ""too hot to handle,"" has been ripped from reviewers' copies and will first appear only in the finished books. Or are there legal problems?) Then there's Mamie's film career, with its many sad moments, including tragic episodes with sister sex-goddesses and rivals Marilyn Monroe and Jayne Mansfield, and playing to exhausted troops on the DMZ in Vietnam (a few of whom get more than a song from her). Standing the double standard on its head; quite a gripper.

Pub Date: Sept. 21st, 1987
Publisher: Putnam