7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Brilliant and insightful,
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This review is from: Olivier: The Authorised Biography (Paperback)There are at least two other books about Olivier currently in print, including his autobiography: both hold claims to being the "definitive work". Meticulously researched, thoughtful and insightful, Coleman's is easily the best of the three. I would put the autobiographical CONFESSIONS OF AN ACTOR in second place and the recently reissued Holden biography (which, sadly, seems to have had the most press coverage) in third, as it seems to me redundant.
The genius of this book is that the reader really feels an insight into the personality of its subject: Coleman avoids almost completely the "Olivier did this; then he did that" style that, sadly, many biographers fall into.
Considered in its treatment of the controversial aspects of Olivier's personality such as his sexuality, and yet forthright about his character flaws, Coleman's is probably the best biography I have ever read.