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Don't Mind If I Do Hardcover – October 14, 2008

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Hamilton's acting image—a rich, preppy, Eastern WASP with a year-round suntan—is a far cry from his just folks childhood in the Arkansas town where he was born in 1939. Hamilton gives credit for this transformation, in this gossipy tell-all, to his charismatic divorced mother, Teeny, and inventive half-brother Bill, who taught him how to create the illusion of glamour on a budget. Hamilton also attended military and boarding schools, where a flair for comedy helped him adjust to his new surroundings. Once in Hollywood in 1959 and with a contract to star in Vincente Minnelli's Home from the Hill, Harrison acclimated to a life of jet-setting, detailing his risqué dating exploits and romances with Lynda Bird Johnson and Elizabeth Taylor. Hamilton is a witty raconteur and has a gift for capturing the flair of his mother, while exhibiting a genuine sense of humor about himself. (Oct.)
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"[T]he reigning mood of this self-deprecating good humor. And its stories are star-studded and wild..."-- Janet Maslin, "The New York Times"

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone; 1 edition (October 14, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416545026
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416545026
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.4 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,003,935 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 55 people found the following review helpful By lewis jackman on October 17, 2008
Format: Hardcover
What an enjoyable read! Unlike the all-too-typical angst-ridden star autobiography, George Hamilton (with collaborator William Stadiem) delivers the goods in the same breezy, self-effacing and irreverant tone that has kept his career afloat for nearly fifty years while most of his similarly pretty-faced contemporaries have long drifted out of public memory. Who cares if most people would be hard pressed to name three of his films? What a raconteur!

Impossible to know if this is the real Hamilton but this frequently LOL page-turner expertly maintains the sly persona (sort of a cross between Cary Grant. . . and Seventies-era Burt Reynolds, but with class) he has honed over the years, pulling no punches (yep, there's plenty of dirt--his take on working with Lana Turner is hilarious) yet without ever coming across as mean-spirited.

To avoid sounding like a shill reviewer from someone in the star's (or ghost writer's) camp, I will point out one major flaw: The book is too damn short!

I want to go out to lunch with this guy and hear about the stuff he doesn't even bother to mention. Hell, I'll even spring for the tanning butter!
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By HeyJudy VINE VOICE on November 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I only bought George Hamilton's memoir, DON'T MIND IF IF I DO, because I had finished Tony Curtis' new memoir and I was shocked at how distasteful Tony seemed. I was curious, then, to compare his report with a report by one of his cohorts, though Hamilton is about 15 years younger than Curtis.

I knew next to nothing about George Hamilton when I started this book, other than that during those times I had seen him on television, he had appeared to be clever and charming, self-deprecating and funny. It turns out that Hamilton is all of these things and more.

Though he never complains, he has had a sad life, albeit in a very luxurious way. His mother was so involved in her own hedonistic pleasures that George and his brother David barely managed to get conventional educations; George never even graduated from high school.

Yet his mother connived to live in America's finest communities, including Beverly Hills, Beacon Hill in Boston, Beekman Place and Fifth Avenue in Manhattan and, most of all, Palm Beach. Being raised in these environments of privileged entitlement gave George an outlook that can only be termed exotic.

George sounds, amazingly, like a loving and unquestioning son. As soon as he was able, he took over the support of his mother and his older half-brother. He views his life with humor and his family with obvious affection, though he probably would have been better served to have hidden from them and not left a forwarding address.

Most of his life has been a series of near-misses, from his romance with Lynda Bird Johnson (which, even all of these years later, still strikes a chord of implausibility) to his single attempt at marriage. Yet he examines all of his adventures with acceptance and good humor.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Joe Albanese VINE VOICE on April 2, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I approached George Hamilton's book "Don't Mind If I Do" with some trepidation. Whenever his name came up, it only invoked images of a glossy, golden, sun-baked man - not a real person at all.

In his autobiography, George tackles that part of his image honestly. In a chatty, friendly way, Mr. Hamilton shows the reader his past and what really happened. He does not deny the popular delusion of his spending half his waking hours basking on some beach. In fact, he readily admits to his sun-worshipping habits. No apologies, no explanations, he sets down the facts and doesn't apologize for them.

What does surprise me, more than his honesty, is the wealth of movies he did appear in and his association with the entertainment and political world. From Robert Evans to President Johnson's daughter, George Hamilton met (and partied) with them all. He talks of his successes (Love At First Bite) and his string of failures (The Happy Hooker Goes To Washington).

His relationships with the women in his life (and, although legion, he does not kiss-and-tell) is told. Surprisingly, he gives quite a brutal assessment of his family. His recollections on the life, and passing, of his brother are quite touching.

It all makes for a fast, and sometimes quite funny, read.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mediaman on June 23, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This gossipy memoir is filled with unusual stories of people Hamilton knew, slept with, worked with and even accidentally encountered (catching Senator John F. Kennedy skinny dipping with a lover?). Unfortunately, most of the first half of the book is really the story of Hamilton's weird mother and dysfuncational family.

He claims to have had a "Dobie Gillis" upbringing, but that is far from the truth. The mom was married four times by George's teen years, they moved over a dozen times from Arkansas to Hollywood to Memphis to New York to Palm Beach. And sometimes just traveled the country trying to find someone to mooch off of.

His mother used her charm and body to attract well-to-do men, then lived off them. The kids went along for the ride, including George's much older half-brother who is described as being into playing with dolls and liking interior design.

Hamilton's father was out of the picture for many years, but George also unfortunately describes his short time living with the man at age 12, where George lost his virginity to his step-mother.

Though the first chapter wisely focuses on Dancing With the Stars, the next hundred pages depressingly details his oddball family and his pre-adult years. It ultimately detracts from Hamilton's carefully-crafted image. At one point he says he was told to never "kiss and tell," but that's exactly what he does here--including affairs his mother has with the rich and famous. He does an inadequate job stating how any of it impacted him.

All of it made him who he became--the actor/playboy who never became famous for his dramatic skills but who obviously learned his seductive charm from his mother.
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