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Entirely Up to You, Darling by [Hawkins, Diana, Attenborough, Richard]
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Entirely Up to You, Darling Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Length: 336 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Review

"Actor and director Richard Attenborough is a giant of British cinema - and one of the best connected men in the world of showbusiness ... Now he's telling his extraordinary story ... Moving and enthralling" (Daily Mail)

"One of the most readable and entertaining showbusiness memoirs I have read" (Sunday Express)

"Richard Attenborough, with his long-term collaborator Diana Hawkins, has written a highly entertaining memoir, Entirely Up to You Darling. Despite its self-mocking title, it offers an insightful account of professional triumphs and personal tragedy" (Books of the Year, Independent)

"There is, in Attenborough's life, as arresting a sense of narrative as in his films" (Scotland on Sunday)

"They make for enjoyable reading because Attenborough has had such a rich and varied life" (Sunday Times)

Review

`Classic Attenborough'

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 9633 KB
  • Print Length: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Cornerstone Digital (4 Sept. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00N3Q0RT2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #194,447 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is a very interesting book, but rather flawed.

From the book front cover you may believe it is Richard Attenborough's life story, but look closely at the bottom of the front cover, and in small writing it says "and Diana Hawkins"

From that I assumed she had ghost written the book, as often happens with these life stories of the famous. But in fact it is both their life stories running side by side.

Diana Hawkins worked with Richard as publicity manager on many of his films such as Ghandi, Chorus Line and so on, so they shared many areas of their life.

I believe the book is flawed for two reasons:

Firstly, the text alternates between Richard and Diana. Text for Richard begins "RA" and he writes for a page or two, then we get "DH" and Diana writes for a page or two.

This itself is a bit disconcerting, just as you are getting used to what Richard is saying we switch to Diana, then back again.

This is not too bad when they are discussing the same topic, such as the making of Ghandi, or the publicity tour for Chorus Line, but can become annoying when they are discussing different phases of their lives.

The second "flaw" is that the book follow no logical sequence.

It starts with a detailed look at how Ghandi was made, but then Richard starts talking about his early life, and Diana starts talking about her early life (at which point one asks "do I care").

We then go back to Ghandi, then we get Richard talking about his life in the war and his early career, and Diana talking about her marital problems, then we go on to Chorus line, and so it goes on.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A joy to read.

Some people were disappointed that it (a) was jointly written by Attenborough and Hawkins and (b) from time darted backwards and forwards.

This did not bother me as it gave me a great insight into how the man worked and why he did what he did.

I moved on to read the biography by Maxford about David Lean and abandoned it after about 80 pages. It is full of names, dates and places but one is none the wiser about what made the man tick. It is totally boring.
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Format: Paperback
There are some very interesting stories about the struggles of film making hidden away in the most bizarre structure for an autobiography I've ever come across. The timeline jumps about erratically, and much of the book is written from the perspective of RA' s publicist / co-producer. What do I care about DH's marriage problems 30 odd years ago, particularly when they are interrupting a story about getting Gandhi made? What we get here is effectively half a book from RA - and the sense that we are missing out on many aspects of a very interesting life.
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Format: Paperback
There is a great book to be written about this truly wonderful man who knew more about cinema and theatre than most people ever will. This unfortunately is not that book. It has none of the wit, wisdom, rich humour and dynamism of the man himself. Perhaps now - following his sad but inevitable death - it may be written. In the interim this will provide many with some limited insights into his genius but not his generosity of spirit and profound humanity.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book, by two exceptionally great writers, was indeed a wonderful read. It is 'humanity' by whatever way anyone wishes to define it, that is the real story here. Although the business of film is the common denominator throughout, it is the quality of the writers, first as human beings, then as professionals, which comes through. If ever an affirmation for 'British' as a Brand were needed, then
this book is certainly it! Read and enjoy
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Format: Paperback
I've had a wonderful week immersed in this excellent book, which I found almost impossible to put down until I'd finished it!
Richard, in tandem with his long-time collaborator Diana Hawkins, takes us on a breezy & illuminating journey through his lengthy & illustrious career as actor, director, producer & motivator.

I loved how the style jumped around between certain eras around the central timeline; the memory of one thing sparking another, & how his unflagging years of persistence in taking Ghandi to the big screen finally came to fruition - re-launching his career into the next era.

The book is filled with many personal insights & highlights, as well as the expected memoirs on his life & the film industry as a whole (& gives a sobering account of the challenges of simply getting a film off the ground from scratch & finding a backer in the cynical world of Hollywood). The lengthy process of bringing Ghandi to the screen, despite years & years of setbacks, is a fascinating document of one man's determination to never give up.

He meets many inspiring & powerful people along the way, & never gives up when all hope sometimes appears to be lost in the pursuit of his dreams.

I've read a good many autobiographies, but this is definitely one of the most enjoyable I've come across.
The writing styles of the two authors compliment each other perfectly, & you can see why Richard & Diana's personal & professional relationship endured for so many happy & successful decades.

There's personal tragedy too at the loss of his beloved daughter & granddaughter in the Thailand tsunami of 2004, & his surprising personal friendship with Princess Diana is also revealed too.

The accompanying photos throughout the book are excellent as well.
I feel so privileged that Richard has documented his life in this way, & allowed me a fascinating window into his life, work & personal world. These are the times!
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