Alone Together: My Life with J. Paul Getty

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9780062219718: Alone Together: My Life with J. Paul Getty

It was 1935. Flame-haired Teddy Lynch finished singing "Alone Together" at the swanky nightclub the New Yorker and left the stage to find a charming stranger at her friends' table. It was Jean Paul Getty, enigmatic oil tycoon and America's first billionaire.

In her passionate, unflinchingly honest memoir of two outsize lives entwined, Theodora "Teddy" Getty Gaston—now one hundred years old—reveals the glamorous yet painful story of her marriage to Getty. As formidable as he was, Teddy was equally strong-minded and flamboyant, and their clutches and clashes threw off sparks. She knew the vulnerable side of Getty—he underwent painful plastic surgery and suffered terrible phobias—that few, if any, saw.

A vivid love story, Alone Together is also a fascinating glimpse into the twentieth century from the vantage point of one of its most remarkable couples. This is how the other half lived—dinner dances, satin gowns, beach houses, hotel suites, first-class cabins on the Queen Mary. Teddy's extra-ordinary life story moves from the glittering nightclubs of 1930s New York City to Mussolini's Italy, where she was imprisoned by the fascist regime, to California in the golden postwar years, where Paul and Teddy socialized with movie stars and the elite.

But life with one of the world's richest men wasn't all glitz and glamour. Though terrifically charismatic in person, Getty grew more miserly as his wealth increased. Worse, he often left Teddy and their son, Timothy, behind for years at a time while he built planes for the war effort in the 1940s or brokered oil deals—he was the first American to lease mineral rights in Saudi Arabia, which made him, at his death, the richest man in the world. Even when Timothy was diagnosed with a brain tumor, Getty complained about medical bills and failed to return to the United States to support his wife and son. When Timothy died at age twelve, the marriage was already falling apart.

Teddy's unrelenting spirit, her valiant friendship, and her winning lack of vanity transform what could have been a sob story into a nuanced portrait of a brilliant but stubbornly difficult man and the family he loved but left behind, as well as an enchanting view into a bygone era. This was a life lived from the heart.

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About the Author:

Theodora "Teddy" Getty Gaston, born in Chicago in 1913, began singing at the age of sixteen in the chorus of J. J. Shubert's Arms and the Maid and, in the twenties, performed as a torch singer in New York's most prestigious supper clubs. She studied opera in Europe and worked for the New York Herald Tribune during World War II. After a long romance, she married J. Paul Getty, with whom she had one child. During their eighteen-year marriage, Teddy acted in Forgotten Women and Billy Wilder's The Lost Weekend, and she started a water company, a candy company, and a children's charity in her son's name. In 1990, she wrote her first book, The Mark of the Eagle.



Digby Diehl is one of the most trusted and successful literary collaborators in America. He has written, cowritten, rewritten, researched, and edited more than three dozen books. He was the founding editor of the original Los Angeles Times Book Review and previously served as a book columnist for AARP The Magazine and as a literary correspondent for ABC's Good Morning America. Diehl is currently the book editor of The Rotarian and writes articles and reviews for publications such as Esquire, the New York Times, People, and TV Guide. He lives in Pasadena with his wife, Kay Beyer Diehl.

Review:

“’Alone Together’ is a whirlwind tour through the storied places and people of the early 20th century: the Stork Club and the Russian Tea Room, appearances by Bette Davis, Henry Fonda, Jesse Lasky.” (LA Times)

“Their whirlwind courtship ... is the stuff of legend.” (C Magazine)

“Teddy vividly reflects on the tumultuous days of her marriage to the world’s first billionaire and the tragedies that defined their lives.” (Booklist)

“Offers a glimpse into a privileged world where all that glittered was far from being gold.” (Kirkus)

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2013. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 229 x 147 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Manhattan, 1935. It was love at first sight the night J. Paul Getty walked into the exclusive club The New Yorker and saw Teddy onstage, a beautiful blue-blooded debutante, singing torch songs. In Alone Together, Teddy-now nearly 100 - tells the large-than-life true story of their three-decade long love affair and its aftermath, a sweeping saga of passion, adventure, danger, betrayal and tragedy. Moving from the glittering nightclubs of 1930s New York to Mussolini s Italy and California in the golden post-war years, Alone Together brings to life the dazzling time when the Algonquin and Elmers (EL Morocco) where the epicenters of New York s most fashionable and famous circles. Gaston recalls stories of hobnobbing with such legendary figures as Gypsy Rose Lee, Walter Winchell, and Dorothy Lamour.She recreates the drama of living in a fascist regime in the dark years of war in Mussolin s Italy where she was studying to become an opera singer - including her yearlong imprisonment with foreign journalists She shares the joy of new motherhood and the heartbreaking pain of loss-both the death of her twelve-year-old son, Timothy, and her husband s eventual abandonment - while living in sunny 1950s Malibu next to Marion Davies. With lively wit and tremendous compassion, Gaston offers a nuanced portrait of a difficult man - a skinflint who was richer than anyone in his time; a terrifically charismatic but neglectful companion; a driven businessman who refused to put his family first. Yet despite these vicissitudes, Teddy remained Getty s steadfast friend until his death in 1976. Fascinating and extraordinary, Alone Together is a remarkable look at the twentieth century through the lives of one of the century s most intriguing couples. Bookseller Inventory # LIB9780062219718

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2013. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 229 x 147 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Manhattan, 1935. It was love at first sight the night J. Paul Getty walked into the exclusive club The New Yorker and saw Teddy onstage, a beautiful blue-blooded debutante, singing torch songs. In Alone Together, Teddy-now nearly 100 - tells the large-than-life true story of their three-decade long love affair and its aftermath, a sweeping saga of passion, adventure, danger, betrayal and tragedy. Moving from the glittering nightclubs of 1930s New York to Mussolini s Italy and California in the golden post-war years, Alone Together brings to life the dazzling time when the Algonquin and Elmers (EL Morocco) where the epicenters of New York s most fashionable and famous circles. Gaston recalls stories of hobnobbing with such legendary figures as Gypsy Rose Lee, Walter Winchell, and Dorothy Lamour.She recreates the drama of living in a fascist regime in the dark years of war in Mussolin s Italy where she was studying to become an opera singer - including her yearlong imprisonment with foreign journalists She shares the joy of new motherhood and the heartbreaking pain of loss-both the death of her twelve-year-old son, Timothy, and her husband s eventual abandonment - while living in sunny 1950s Malibu next to Marion Davies. With lively wit and tremendous compassion, Gaston offers a nuanced portrait of a difficult man - a skinflint who was richer than anyone in his time; a terrifically charismatic but neglectful companion; a driven businessman who refused to put his family first. Yet despite these vicissitudes, Teddy remained Getty s steadfast friend until his death in 1976. Fascinating and extraordinary, Alone Together is a remarkable look at the twentieth century through the lives of one of the century s most intriguing couples. Bookseller Inventory # LIB9780062219718

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