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Not the Girl Next Door: Joan Crawford, a Personal Biography | [Charlotte Chandler]

Not the Girl Next Door: Joan Crawford, a Personal Biography

She was beautiful, talented, irascible, ruthless, vulnerable, and a true Hollywood legend. From abused child to dance-hall entertainer to silent-film actress, she went on to become one of Hollywood's screen goddesses with films such as Possessed opposite Clark Gable, with whom she began a torrid off-screen affair, Grand Hotel, and Mildred Pierce, her Academy Award-winning film.
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Publisher's Summary

She was beautiful, talented, irascible, ruthless, vulnerable, and a true Hollywood legend. From abused child to dance-hall entertainer to silent-film actress, she went on to become one of Hollywood's screen goddesses with films such as Possessed opposite Clark Gable, with whom she began a torrid off-screen affair; Grand Hotel; and Mildred Pierce, her Academy Award-winning film. Joan Crawford succeeded and survived through sheer determination, talent, invention, and re-invention.

Now, Charlotte Chandler, the acclaimed biographer of Ingrid Bergman (Ingrid), Bette Davis (The Girl Who Walked Home Alone), and Groucho Marx (Hello, I Must Be Going), gives us a revealing and often surprising portrait of Joan Crawford, much of it in Joan Crawford's own words.

©2008 Charlotte Chandler; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

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  •  
    James Gordon New York, NY 03-13-08
    James Gordon New York, NY 03-13-08 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Cardboard Cutout"

    I'm not sure what this biography adds to the Crawford mystique, but for my money it doesn't add anything. The author stuffed the book with unnecessary facts and descriptions of Crawford's films for no apparent reason (other than to pad the skimpy book). There's not a single fact or insight that hasn't been made before (and better!). And the pretentious narration left me confused: no change of inflection, no attempt to differentiate one character from another, the narrator sounds as if she's reading a papal encylical and with all the passion of an accountant. Bad all around.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Spokane, WA, United States 04-17-08
    Chris Spokane, WA, United States 04-17-08 Member Since 2005
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    "Bad narration, but you get used to it"

    Yes, the narrator has an affected way of speaking and mispronounces basic movie names (Joseph Mankiewicz as Man KEE a WITZ), and yes the plot summaries are unnecessary and substitute for more substantive details about Crawford's life. Still, this gives a good picture of Crawford's marriage to Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., with extensive interviews, and you get used to the narrator after a while. The story is compelling despite these flaws.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rebecca Brooklyn, NY, USA 03-27-08
    Rebecca Brooklyn, NY, USA 03-27-08
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    "Bad narration"

    I agree with the other review. The narration is poor. Would not recommend this book for that reason.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rexel Henderson, NV, United States 01-11-10
    Rexel Henderson, NV, United States 01-11-10 Member Since 2008
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    "At best, an average performance by narrator"

    Whether the content written by author Chandler is true or not, I find it appalling that the narrator appears to have prepared less than adequately for her performance. She pronounces a number of names incorrectly, such as Charles Boyer (pronounced "Boi-yuhr", as opposed to the expected "Boi-yay") and Jack Palance (Pa-LANCE instead of the correct PAL-ance). There is a deliberate pacing that could be admirable until I positively cringe with such pronunciation errors.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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