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Fred Astaire Bibliography PDF Print E-mail

Review by PJ Thum

Purchase from Amazon.com

Author: Larry Billman

Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group; ISBN: 0313290105; (September 1997)

Hardcover; 424 pages ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.46 x 9.34 x 6.30

The most authoritative book ever published about Fred Astaire. Given the vast amount of ink spilled and trees sacrificed about the 20th Century's greatest entertainer, that's not a statement to be made lightly, but in the case of this book, it is true. No other book captures so much of Fred in just one volume. It starts with an excellent biography, and then launches into a detailed, blow-by-blow analysis of Fred on the stage, screen, and every other medium Fred participated in. Furthermore, it doesn't just stop at the bare facts- it includes reviews, anecdotes and trivia, breathing life into each of Fred's shows and movies. It is also exhaustively cross-referenced. There are even sections on Fred's musical compositions, awards and tributes that he's received, and projects that were announced for Fred (but never filmed). There are a few minor errors, but when a book like this one tried to encompass so much ground, those tend to be inevitable. In an event, all the important facts are correct, not least the oft-misquoted "Can't Act. Slightly Bald. Also Dances." review. For anybody with more than a casual passing interest in Fred, this book is a must, and together with Steps In Time and Astaire Dancing, forms the cornerstone of any Fred fan's library.

Last Updated on Monday, 09 November 2009 09:15