Talk About America

[Bacall, Lauren]; Cooke, Alistair

Published by Alfred A. Knopf, 1968
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Cloth; dust jacket; 8vo; pp. 310. Inscribed by the author to Lauren Bacall, "Rx for Betty: Take one or two on retiring -- for insomnia and disappointment in America -- To be taken with love and affection / Aristotle (M. D.), Nov. 25/68." Cooke was fond of inscribing to friends with a nickname (in this case, "Aristotle"), and the handwriting is his. Lauren Bacall was born in the Bronx as Betty Joan Perske, and only close friends and loved ones used her real name. Bacall was a life-long democrat, and may have known Cooke through her political activities. Lauren Bacall (born in the Bronx as Betty Joan Perske, 1924-2014) was an American actress known for her distinctive voice and sultry looks. Howard Hawks (director, producer, screenwriter) changed her first name to Lauren, and Perske adopted "Bacall," a variant of her mother's maiden name (of Romanian Jewish descent), as her screen surname. The young Lauren Bacall, worked as an usher at the St. James Theatre, and as a fashion model. She made her acting debut on Broadway in 1942, at age 17, as a walk-on in "Johnny 2x4." By then, she lived with her mother on Bank Street, Greenwich Village, and in 1942 she was crowned Miss Greenwich Village. Though Diana Vreeland is often credited with "discovering" Bacall, putting her on the cover of "Vogue" in 1943, much of the iconography surrounding Bacall she cultivated herself with the help of Nancy Hawks, Howard Hawks's wife, who advised Bacall on clothing, elegance, manners, and taste. Even Bacall's trademark voice required arduous training -- at Hawks's suggestion, Bacall worked with a voice coach to make her voice lower and deeper. Her screen debut as the leading lady in the Humphrey Bogart film "To Have and Have Not" (1944) made her an instant star. She married Bogart in 1945, and continued in the film noir genre alongside him in "The Big Sleep" (1946), "Dark Passage" (1947), and "Key Largo" (1948). She starred in the romantic comedies "How to Marry a Millionaire" (1953) with Marilyn Monroe, and "Designing Woman" (1957) with Gregory Peck. She co-starred with John Wayne in his final film, "The Shootist" (1976). Bacall worked on Broadway in musicals, earning Tony Awards for "Applause" (1970) and "Woman of the Year" (1981). Bookseller Inventory #

Bibliographic Details

Title: Talk About America
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf
Publication Date: 1968
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Near Fine
Edition: First American Edition.

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