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From Sawdust to Stardust: The Biography of DeForest Kelley, Star Trek's Dr. McCoy Paperback – 1 Feb 2005

4.7 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 390 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket; 1st Pocket Books Trade Pbk. Ed edition (1 Feb. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743457625
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743457620
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 421,473 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"For those interested in the life and work of actor DeForest Kelley, they cannot do better than consult "From Sawdust to Stardust, " Terry Lee Rioux's thorough and engaging life story of the beloved actor."
-- Nicholas Meyer, screenwriter and film director

"A baseball coach of some note once opined, 'Nice guys finish last.' Terry Lee Rioux's well-researched and readable "From Sawdust to Stardust" is warm, charming and inspirational -- especially for those who work just out of the limelight, and never curse their luck. For "Star Trek" fans, it's a chance to re-enter the final frontier with a really nice guy."
-- Ronald J. Drez, author of "Voices of Valor" and "Remember D-Day"

About the Author

After earning a baccalaureate degree in anthropology from SUNY Plattsburgh, Terry Lee Rioux joined the United States Coast Guard. Later she earned a Master of Arts degree in history at Lamar University. Terry s professional focus has been the preservation and interpretation of individual life stories in the nineteenth and twentiethth centuries. She lives and works in New Orleans and travels frequently to Los Angeles. She has continued to participate in academic work in Texas through the East Texas Historical Association. Terry is an active volunteer in the collections division of the National D-Day Museum in New Orleans. She is the author of "From Sawdust to Stardust".


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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have just finsished reading this wonderful book in floods of tears. What a remarkable man. I always remember Deforest Kelley forever as Dr Leonard H McCoy from Star Trek, i bought the book wanting to know more and i have not regretted it. Deforest Kelley was a complex man but obviously very talented as an actor and a warm compassionate human being and that came across in this book. From Sawdust to Stardust is a moving passionate tribute to Deforest Kelley, insightful, funny and moving. The world was robbed of a true human being when he died in 1999. As Dr McCoy once said "He's not really gone, as long as we remember him......." How true.
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If you know nothing of Deforest Kelley, this is still an extraordinary and beautifully written book. If you do know of him and are interested in learning more, you cannot do without it. I came to this as a fan of the man behind Dr McCoy and his story has enlightened me no end. A wonderful journey with a wonderful human being who is an example to us all.

Losing such a man has left a hole in the world. This book is an absolute tribute to him. Just buy it.
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Was second hand but you would never know. Even giving it a good examination it seems to be in perfect condition. It arrived quickly (as usual with Amazon) and best of all it is a very good read. As a Star Trek fan of many years, the first half of the book was mildly interesting, giving details of his early life and career, but since getting on the Star Trek years it is absolutely fascinating. Glad I bought it, and I just wonder shy anyone would sell their copy !
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The lovely 'Bones'.
Terry Lee Rioux has written the most marvellous and comprehensive biography of DeForest Kelly. His warmth and generosity of spirit shine through on every page.
Even if you are not a Star Trek fan, this gives a fascinating account of how the Hollywood system treated the actors under contract to the big studios.
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Like many others, my only knowledge of DeForest Kelley was as Star Trek's Dr.McCoy - and even that was limited to what I saw of his character on screen. So when I was in the mood for a bit of a Trek biography, I took a gamble and purchased this book - and I was not disappointed. You know when you pick up a book and just can't put it down? Well for me, this is one of those.

To be honest, when it arrived I was really only intending to skip to the Star Trek aspect of his life but begining at the beginning (that makes sense right?) I was drawn into the whole book from beginning to end. To me, one word sums up DeForest Kelley - gentleman. His life was not filled with Hollywood excesses nor was he a showbiz type of person. Instead, he was very down to earth and grounded. Family and homelife seemed to be the most important to him - followed by his career and dedication to his fanbase.

A wonderful read, I couldn't put it down. Deforest Kelley was a genuinly modest man and this book really shows that.

Simply brilliant. A must buy. (Even if you're not a Trek fan).
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book hoping for an amusing fund of behind-the-scenes Trekkie anecdotes. I wasn't disappointed, but From Sawdust to Stardust is a much more accomplished work than I expected.

Terry Lee Rioux has researched De Kelley with enormous thoroughness. Her sixteen pages of notes on sources give you some idea of just how conscientiously she has worked. She doesn't only tell us about De's contribution to Star Trek: she tells the tale of his impoverished childhood, his youthful struggles in theatre, film and television, his enviably happy marriage, his failing health and, very movingly, his death. What's more, she writes with wonderful sympathy, so that by the time you close her biography, you really feel that you know De almost as well as if you'd been lucky enough to be his friend.

And lucky is the mot juste. What I enjoyed most about this book was discovering just what a dear, good man De Kelley was. His wealth and fame obviously never spoiled him in the way that they could have done. He remained to the end humble, generous, loyal and self-sacrificing: a man who was content to remain in his little suburban home, giving away his fortune to friends and charities, preferring the company of his neighbour and his postman to that of Hollywood celebrities, ultimately refusing experimental cancer treatment so that someone else could profit from it instead.

Usually, after reading a TV tie-in, I give it to a charity shop. This one I'll treasure for a lifetime, as a book to encourage me when I'm flagging, cheer me up when I'm sad and remind me of how to try to live my life as I should. I keep it, not with my other Star Trek books, but on my shelf of philosophy: that's where it belongs.

Pocket Books have designed the book elegantly and very legibly, with seventeen well-reproduced black and white photographs from the Kelley family's archive.
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