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The Garner Files (Thorndike Biography) Hardcover – Large Print, 2 Nov 2011


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Hardcover, Large Print, 2 Nov 2011
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 435 pages
  • Publisher: Thorndike Press; Lrg edition (2 Nov 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141044337X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1410443373
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 14.7 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,481,688 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Garner follows his own heroic dictum: Plenty of self-deprecating, humor, a general air of live-and-let-live, but when it comes down to it, no pulled punches. For Garner fans, 'The Garner Files' is catnip...it is a fine, frank and fun collection."--LOS ANGELES TIMES --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Karen Squires on 16 Jan 2012
Format: Hardcover
Mr. Garner does not wear his heart on his sleeve. What you get here is a down to earth recounting of the main events of his career and personal life and interests, and what HE feels is important and should be reported. Fair enough. He is what he is and I am very grateful to him for this book. Not every star wants to share all their intimate details and kiss and tell stories and thank goodness for that. What I particularly liked about this book was the fact that he threw it open to friends and family to make their own observations and say whatever they wanted for good or bad and the other thing was the reviews he gave of his own films. Very interesting. A good read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Daisy on 27 July 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I chose OK because it was not the riveting read I had hoped for. Would I recommend this as a good read? No, the content was disappointing and I don't think it is particularly well written either.

Much of the memoirs focussed on his early career, Maverick, Rockford files which was interesting. The golf and the racing went on a bit too long for my liking so I eventually skipped them. The book felt as if it had been padded out. A considerable section on what various people thought of or had experienced with James Garner then a resume of all his various roles. Half as much content might have been twice as interesting.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 4 Feb 2012
Format: Hardcover
"Listen now to my voice;" -- Exodus 18:19 (NKJV)

When I was in elementary school, a friend's mother asked me what my favorite television program was. I didn't blink an eye before announcing, "Maverick." She looked surprised, and I explained that I enjoyed watching a show about someone who first tried to think of a solution rather than just use violence. I also mentioned that I thought the show was very funny. From that show's appeal, I followed James Garner and enjoyed watching The Rockford Files and some of his better movies, such as The Americanization of Emily.

Knowing that actor memoirs are often vacuous, I decided to take a chance on finding out more about James Garner. I was glad that I did. There's interesting material here for James Garner fans.

I was fascinated to find out how little training (essentially none) he had before launching into being a successful actor. He credits much of his success to simply observing what outstanding actors did and to being fully present in a scene, no matter how many times the scene is reshot. Clearly, he must be very observant and able to adjust his mind and body to reflect what's going on around him. I was even more interested to learn that he had become a pretty decent golfer through employing a similar method.

The book also succeeds in portraying him as a person who cares about others and does so in respectful ways.

Since the story is leavened with humor, the bromides and insider stories go down a little more smoothly than usual.

I knew that he had struggled with chronic pain for decades (try being humorous through that!), but I didn't know that he also has quite a temper and suffered from greater than usual amounts of stage fright.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Francis Sellors on 1 Aug 2012
Format: Hardcover
I must disagree with one of the other reviewers.
This is a terrific read.
Garner is revealed as a "self-taught actor", one who learnt his craft by carefully observing - at close quarters - many great actors e.g. Fonda and Brando, and by taking on board lots of great advice from , amongst others, Charles Laughton.
Again, it's a great read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 19 Oct 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Really terrible childhood but he behaves gallantly throughout his life. His description of working on the Great Escape was my favourite as I had just seen the film.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By shopper on 4 Aug 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was the perfect present for a friend who just loves James Garner. It covered so much about James, his life experiences, my friend talked non stop about the content stories/incidents for over a week.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Morphaniel on 5 May 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A long overdue biography from Mr Garner and written in his inimitable style! Very difficult to put down and with genuinely personal photographs, not the stock shots that many film biographies include.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have always been a fan of James Garner, so I was looking forward to this book. His early years, childhood and army service in Korea were interesting. The chapters on Maverick and his battles with Warner bros, and his years with the Rockford files were also good. He tended to gloss over much of his movie career, in favour of two lengthy chapters on motor racing and golf which are of little interest.I did not like the last section either, where people he had worked with were heaping praise upon him . I have no doubt he was a great guy, but that section seemed a little too self indulgent. Overall, an interesting read, but not a great one.
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