Synopses & Reviews
The definitive story of Hollywood's most famous couple
He was a tough-guy Welshman softened by the affections of a breathtakingly beautiful woman; she was a modern-day Cleopatra madly in love with her own Mark Antony. For nearly a quarter of a century, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton were Hollywood royalty, and their fiery romance—often called "the marriage of the century"—was the most notorious, publicized, and celebrated love affair of its day.
For the first time, Vanity Fair contributing editor Sam Kashner and acclaimed biographer Nancy Schoenberger tell the complete story of this larger-than-life couple, showing how their romance and two marriages commanded the attention of the world. Also for the first time, in exclusive access given to the authors, Elizabeth Taylor herself gives never-revealed details and firsthand accounts of her life with Burton.
Drawing upon brand-new information and interviews—and on Burton's private, passionate, and heartbreaking letters to Taylor—Furious Love sheds new light on the movies, the sex, the scandal, the fame, the brawls, the booze, the bitter separations, and, of course, the fabled jewels. It offers an intimate glimpse into Elizabeth and Richard's privileged world and their elite circle of friends, among them Princess Grace, Montgomery Clift, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, Peter O'Toole, Michael Caine, Marlon Brando, Rex Harrison, Mike Nichols, Laurence Olivier, Robert Kennedy, Tennessee Williams, Noël Coward, John Huston, Ava Gardner, the Rothschilds, Maria Callas, and Aristotle Onassis. It provides an entertaining, eye-opening look at their films, their wildly lucrative reign in Europe and in Hollywood—and the price they paid for their extravagant lives.
Shocking and unsparing in its honesty, Furious Love explores the very public marriage of "Liz and Dick" as well as the private struggles of Elizabeth and Richard, including Le Scandale, their affair on the set of the notorious epic Cleopatra that earned them condemnation from the Vatican; Burton's hardscrabble youth in Wales; the crippling alcoholism that nearly destroyed his career and contributed to his early death; the medical issues that plagued both him and Elizabeth; and the failed aspirations and shame that haunted him throughout their relationship. As Kashner and Schoenberger illuminate the events and choices that shaped this illustrious couple's story, they demonstrate how the legendary pair presaged America's changing attitudes toward sex, marriage, morality, and celebrity. Yet ultimately, as the authors show, Elizabeth and Richard shared something priceless beyond the drama: enduring love.
Addictive and entertaining, Furious Love is more than a celebrity biography; it's an honest yet sympathetic portrait of a man, a woman, and a passion that shocked and mesmerized the world.
“Exciting and well-written, fast-paced yet containing a wealth of information, Furious Love is a fine read.” Patricia Bosworth, author of Marlon Brando: A Biography
“[A] five-alarm blaze of a biography that enthralls like an Olympian epic. . . . The authors make an excellent case that each deepened the others craft. . . . A vivid portrait of this...two-career marriage on steroids.” Philadelphia Inquirer
“An indulgent, plenty-of-fun book...the authors make shrewd observations...juicy…a good beach book.” New York Times Book Review
“I fell for Furious Love, hook, line and sinker... Ultimately Furious Love is utterly persuasive on the ineffable force of ‘the most notorious, publicized, celebrated, and vilified love affair of its day, offering a powerful portrait of the ecstasies and travails of overreaching passion and crippled psyches...” Boston Globe
“[Furious Love] is fascinating, heartbreaking, and romantic.” Kate Walsh
“Long before there was Brangelina, the high-wire romance between Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton rocked the world. In Furious Love, Sam Kashner and Nancy Schoenberger provide dramatic historical insights into Hollywoods stormiest, up-and-down relationship. Every page is riveting. A hit book for sure!” Douglas Brinkley
“[An] unfailingly respectful and journalistically honest chronicle. . . . Where this book breaks ground is in its ability to humanize these colossal celebs. . . . Reads like a Shakespearean drama.” USA Today
“[An] entertaining, blow-by-blow account of the life and times of an epic Hollywood couple... There is no shortage of saucy anecdotes in Furious Love...” Wall Street Journal
"Trying to figure out the Barbra Streisand mystique is no easy task, but Mann expertly captures the launch of her remarkable career
in the early 1960s when a unique 'star was born.'and#160; Mann's meticulous research and insightful analysis go deeper than any previous biography
"Mann, who has written bios of Katherine Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor, has found another great subject here, and he offers up many new tidbits about Streisand's early life: details of her first affair, with a bisexual actor; her rejecting moth's reaction to seeing her onstage for the first time; and some ruminations about those 3-inch nails." and#8212; People Magazine
"[An] excellent new work...One can only put down HELLO, GORGEOUS with renewed appreciation for Barbraand#8217;s single-mindedness, and with some glimpse of her inner struggle."
and#8212;Liz Smith, syndicated columnist
"Notable for its breadth of detail and fair-mindedness . . . Mann vividly evokes the atmosphere of Streisand's New York." and#8212;and#160; New York Times Book Review
"Mann depicts not just her ferocious ambition and equally fierce insecurities, but also the people and strategies that enabled her rise. With many of those acolytes and assistants as sources, Mann provides an intimate, gossipy and sympathetic accounts of early Streisand." and#8212; The Forward
"In his masterful book, Mann captures one of the most fully realized pictures of the multi-hyphenate superstar to date. . . . Many books have been written about Streisand but few, if any, put readers as close to the subject as Mann does." and#8212; The Miami Herald
"[A] surprisingly suspenseful and masterfully paced biography."
"Streisand fans will come away feeling theyand#8217;ve had a ringside seat at her early career, and they will leave the show applauding."
"A compelling, detailed look at the rise of the multitalented Streisand from 17-year-old unknown to chart-topping singer and Broadway star. Highly recommended for fans of Streisand, biographies, and theater."
"Combining extensive interviews (some anonymous) and exhaustive archival research, Mann balances intimate personal details with audience reactions and critical acclaim to etch an indelible portrait of the artist as a young woman."
From veteran entertainment reporter Sam Kashner and biographer Nancy Schoenberger comes the definitive account of the greatest Hollywood love story ever told—the romance of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Kashner has interviewed Elizabeth Taylor numerous times and is the only journalist given access to her extensive collection of personal letters and journals, and he and Schoenberger have also interviewed the Burton family at length, including Burtons actress daughter Kate. This is truly an authorized and singularly informed biography of these two larger-than-life stars, and of their glamorous, volatile, and audacious relationship.
The acclaimed and bestselling biographer of Katherine Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor charts Barbra Streisandand#8217;s climb to fame during her New York years and tells the electrifying story of how she transformed herself into the greatest superstar of her era.
The best-selling biographer of Katharine Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor tells the electrifying story of how Barbra Streisand transformed herself into the greatest star of her era, etching and#8220;an indelible portrait of the artist as a young womanand#8221; (Publishers Weekly
In 1960, she was a seventeen-year-old Brooklyn kid with plenty of talent but no connections and certainly no money; her mother brought her soup to make sure she stayed fed as she took acting classes and scraped out a living. Just four years later, Barbra Streisand was the top-selling female recording artist in America and the star of one of Broadwayand#8217;s biggest hits. Now the acclaimed Hollywood biographer William Mann chronicles that dizzying ascent, telling the riveting behind-the-scenes story of how Streisand and her team transformed her from an unknown dreamer into a worldwide superstar.
Drawing on the private papers of Jerome Robbins and Bob Fosse, and interviewing scores of the friends and lovers who knew Barbara before she became Barbra, Mann recreates the vanished world of 1960s New York City and uncovers the truth behind the myths of her formative years. He shows us how Funny Girl was slowly altered, by Fosse and Robbins among others, from a Fanny Brice bio into a star-making vehicle for Streisand; takes us into the clubs and onto the set for her early nightclub and television appearances, including her torch-handing turn with Judy Garland; and introduces the canny marketing team whose strategies made her stardom seem inevitable. The Streisand who emerges is a revelation: a young woman who, for all her tough-skinned ambition, was surprisingly vulnerable in love.
Everyone who has felt outside the gate, as she once did, remembers a time when the newness and difference of Barbra Streisand changed everything and rewrote all the rules. In Hello, Gorgeous, Mann incisively illuminates the woman before she became the icon and pays tribute to one of the worldand#8217;s most beloved performers.
About the Author
Sam Kashner, a contributing editor at Vanity Fair
, is the author of three books of nonfiction and one novel, Sinatraland
Poet and biographer Nancy Schoenberger is the author of Dangerous Muse: The Life of Lady Caroline Blackwood. She directs the Creative Writing Program at the College of William and Mary.
Table of Contents
Why Streisand Nowand#8195;1
1. Winter 1960and#8195;9
2. Spring 1960and#8195;37
3. Summer 1960and#8195;57
4. Fall 1960and#8195;83
5. Winterand#8211;Spring 1961and#8195;104
6. Summer 1961and#8195;133
7. Fall 1961and#8195;154
8. Winter 1962and#8195;177
9. Spring 1962and#8195;212
10. Summer 1962and#8195;244
11. Fall 1962and#8195;271
12. Winter 1963and#8195;295
13. Spring 1963and#8195;322
14. Summer 1963and#8195;346
15. Fall 1963and#8195;383
16. Winter 1964and#8195;431
17. Spring 1964and#8195;471