THIS FOR REMEMBRANCE by Rosemary with Raymond Strait Clooney
Kirkus Star


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This candid but strangely unmoving unburdening leads off with--and is dominated by--the Singing Sweetheart's crack-up ten years ago, when an abortive affair and the ""go, go, go"" effect of Seconals plus tranquilizers sent her careening into shopping sprees, baseless show-biz complaints, suicidal driving, and paranoid delusions catalyzed by witnessing the assassination of friend Bobby Kennedy: Rosemary was convinced that Bobby was really alive, that the assassination was a vast practical joke, that she was being pressured into psychiatric treatment to keep her from spilling the secret. ""My brain was short-circuited."" But her super-analyst prevailed (three years, three times a week), and, as Rosemary's treatment reaches back to ""First Things First,"" a more conventional autobiography shapes up--rocky Kentucky childhood with separated, footloose parents and possessive grandmas; teen-age band singing with sister Betty; sudden immersion (guided by Mitch Miller) into gold-record-land (""Come On-a My House"") and television. Even here, however, Rosemary's emphasis is personal rather than professional, as she reminds us how she was innately ""programmed to please at all times,"" especially when it came to now-ex'd husband JosÉ Ferrer. He kept her pregnant (five in five years), strayed often and obviously, but is ""a good human being"" and fine father. Slickly soap-operatic but far less glittery than most show-biz memoirs--Marlene D.'s fishing prowess provides one of the few lilting touches--Clooney's confession-ordeal makes slightly queasy reading. You can't quite be inspired by her comeback (the road to recovery's barely sketched in) and you can't like her as much as you'd like to. But you do--and they will, as with Doris Day--keep reading.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Playboy