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5.0 out of 5 stars The wonderful Lis Sladen; the incomparable Sarah Jane, 24 Jun 2012
This review is from: Elisabeth Sladen: The Autobiography (Hardcover)
I leapt at the chance to read this book, the story of Elisabeth Sladen's acting career. Clearly she is best known to most people from her Doctor Who and associated Doctor Who career - and it was terribly sad to hear of her early death. She never really seemed to age, or change - Sarah Jane was always Sarah Jane - visually, aurally, in every way. Very sad, but I'm so glad she was able to get so much down on paper for so many fans to be able to read in the future.

It was extremely interesting to read of her early life and her family - and her schooling and choice to become involved in acting. I had never really heard of many of the people who she worked with, but some were certainly familiar. Funny to hear of their early days.

Once Elisabeth joined Doctor Who, as the replacement companion for Jon Pertwee's Doctor Who, the story really becomes fascinating. I can imagine Jon Pertwee being larger than life as she writes - demanding, yet kindly in his own way. I would also imagine life as an actress in the 1970's not being all that easy, being looked down upon by many in the industry. More power to Ms Sladen for her drive and forthright approach to her work. It's interesting also to read of the way in which the stories were put together, the rehearsals, the filming, and the power of the Unions in those days. The anecdotes are really interesting to read; the stories of having to get back to the boarding house first to get the hot water for the bath - who would have thought the life of an actor was all glamour and champagne?

I've read Tom Baker's Who on Earth is Tom Baker? Autobiography, and I have Nicholas Courtney's book Still Getting Away with It to read on my shelves, so I was definitely glad to have the opportunity to hear Lis Sladen's story. She clearly had a loving and supportive family, and she had a great opportunity with Doctor Who which seemed to stand her in good stead for so many years, even after leaving the original tv show.

This book is a great memento of the years of a much-loved and missed actress; her writing is, as I image Lis herself was, forthright and honest. She clearly didn't suffer fools gladly, and took her work very seriously, while still retaining her sense of humour throughout some very difficult circumstances. She will be missed by many; I'm glad we get the chance to read her story. The final pages bring tears to your eyes; the mixture of sad and happy is what Lis' life seems to have been about; a bit like Sarah Jane's.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 15 Oct 2013 01:38:16 BDT
Timelord007 says:
Great book this, When i heard Lis Sladen died i cryed as it was like losing a friend.
She is much missed but her legacy on Doctor Who & Sarah Jane Adventures will never die.
Good sturctured review.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Oct 2013 04:37:03 BDT
Keen Reader says:
It was a great book; you could really hear Lis Sladen's 'voice' throughout. It's been a devastating time losing her, and Caroline Johns, Nicholas Courtenay, and Mary Tamm. Horrible.
We never got the Sarah Jane Adventures on tv here, but I've got a few of the audio adventures. Good old Sarah Jane and K9 you can't go wrong.
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