Get Happy: The Life of Judy Garland and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $18.00
  • Save: $6.41 (36%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 5 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Used: Very Good | Details
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: Very Good! Eligible for FREE Super Saving Shipping! Fast Amazon shipping plus a hassle free return policy mean your satisfaction is guaranteed! Tracking number provided in your Amazon account with every order. A well-cared-for item that has seen limited use but remains in great condition. The item is complete, unmarked, and undamaged, but may show some limited signs of wear
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Get Happy: The Life of Judy Garland Paperback – March 6, 2001


See all 10 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
$11.59
$5.67 $0.01




Frequently Bought Together

Get Happy: The Life of Judy Garland + Judy + Judy Garland: A Biography
Price for all three: $46.94

Buy the selected items together
  • Judy $23.99
  • Judy Garland: A Biography $11.36

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Hero Quick Promo
Browse in Books with Buzz and explore more details on selected titles, including the current pick, "The Good Girl" by Mary Kubica.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Delta (March 6, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385335156
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385335157
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (98 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #377,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Like his renowned Capote, Clarke's Get Happy is an addictively readable bio of an addict genius. We learn that it wasn't just the Hollywood moguls who mangled Judy Garland's soul. Yes, MGM's Louis B. Mayer did paw her teenage breasts, exacerbate her insecurity by calling her "my little hunchback," feed her uppers and downers ("bolts and jolts"), and repel the U.S. drug czar's personal attempt to get her into rehab. But the true villain was Judy's diabolical stage mom, Ethel Gumm, who fed her pills at age 9. Judy's heart belonged to her daddy, a kindly theater owner cursed with pederastic yearnings that evidently got the family run out of various towns, once by a man named Doc Savage. Daddy died young, and Judy kept hooking up with older men, including two probably gay husbands, one of whom cheated on her with her daughter Liza's husband. Her first best girlfriend in Hollywood (and probable lover) turned out to be a studio spy. She knew at least one of her agents, nicknamed Loeb and Leopold, robbed her blind, but since betrayal was everybody's way of life, she just laughed it off--and died dead broke. Judy cheated on Liza's dad (and her own great director) Vincente Minnelli, with still-handsome Orson Welles, who was cheating on Rita Hayworth. "People like me don't grow up easily," Judy once said. Most people in this book deserved to go up in flames, but only nice Margaret Hamilton, playing the Wicked Witch of the West, actually did so in a filming accident. She recovered; Judy didn't. It's fascinating to read about Judy's self-immolating life. But for a jolt of joy afterward, I prescribe the CD Judy at Carnegie Hall. Clarke lets you know what the songs cost, and what they mean. --Tim Appelo --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Judy Garland's on-screen longing for a land where "sorrows melt like lemon drops away above the chimney tops" was answered with a life plagued by emotional agony, dependency on drugs and alcohol, exploitative relationships, suicide attempts and physical violence. This exhaustively researched and illuminating biography by Clarke, whose bestselling 1988 life of Truman Capote won critical praise, is as compassionate as it is wrenching. It follows the basic themes established by the best of the more than 20 biographies and memoirs of Garland that have appeared since her 1969 death (in particular, Gerald Frank's 1975 bio, authorized by her family). But while most portray Garland as tormented by inexorable and sometimes inexplicable inner demons, Clarke brings to his work a far harsher evaluation of how the singer was treated by her employers, family and lovers: her mother gave her amphetamines at the age of four; producers at MGM sexually harassed her as a young teen; husband Vincente Minnelli cheated on her with men soon after their marriage; husband Sid Luft stole millions from her; fourth husband Mark Herron had an affair with Garland's son-in-law, Peter Allen (then married to Liza Minnelli). Many of Clarke's revelations are of a sexual nature--he mentions affairs with Sinatra, Glenn Ford, Yul Brynner and Tyrone Power as well as with women. Other revelations, such as of Garland attacking her young son, Joey, with a butcher's knife, are simply shocking. Yet Clarke never exploits this volatile material as cheap gossip; instead, he deftly weaves it into a detailed, respectful and haunting portrait. (Apr.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

I'm a huge Judy fan and I love this book more and more everytime I read it.
ChiCarolina
It doesn't begin to do justice to an American talent who was more than just a superstar singer, movie star, recording artist, and unbelieveable performer.
JordanJasper
Despite the fact that it has some very real limitations, Get Happy: The Life of Judy Garland by Gerald Clark is not a badly written book.
Matthew G. Sherwin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 41 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 3, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I have no idea why I wanted to read about Judy Garland's life again.

After reading Lorna Luft's ME AND MY SHADOWS, as well as various other tidbits over the years, I'd concluded that Judy's story is undoubtedly one of the most tragic and sad ever to come out of Hollywood. This book left me feeling no different, and I can't say that I necessarily learned anything particularly new or revelatory about Judy. Her life was spent under the control of so many others that her life just isn't all that interesting. All the problems she had have been so well reported that alot of what's here is just a rehash. As far as the sexual element to this book, even her daughter's bio made a few allusions to Judy's sexual appetite. Not a shock there.

In any event...I did find the book interesting enough to get through in about three days. All in all, the book is very personal, and alot of the sections with "iffy" proof are hard to swallow as reality. It just left me feeling so sad for this immensely talented woman, who deserved so much better for what she gave us than what she got.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 14, 2000
Format: Hardcover
As an avid reader of biographies, this book seemed tempting and fulfilled its promise. Not only did I devour it in two sittings, I found Clarke's telling of Judy Garland's life compelling, rich in detail, and extremely fair. I found myself following along in the notes to see who Clarke had interviewed, and was amazed at the roster of people he talked to. I have read other Garland biographies, and felt that this book captured her life in all its ups and downs most eloquently. The book was engrossing from the get-go, and Mr. Clarke has done an admirable job capturing the greatest entertainer of our time.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Gary F. Taylor HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 12, 2002
Format: Paperback
Written in a decidedly gossipy and occasionally mean-spirited tone, the much anticipated GET HAPPY comes no where near unseating Christopher Finch's RAINBOW as the ultimate biography of entertainer Judy Garland, nor does it contain the exhaustive (and occasionally exhausting) detail of Gerald Frank's JUDY; still, it does offer a number of interesting sidelights into Garland's life that previous biographers have elected to either downplay or ignore.

It is in this area that GET HAPPY excells. Instead of merely acknowleding that Garland's father was homosexual and that this played a major role in family difficulties, Clarke is extremely explicit on the point; he also delves further into Garland's own sexual escapades with such figures as Artie Shaw, Betty Asher, and Tyrone Power than most biographers have dared, and he gives the fullest portait of the Garland-Rose marriage thus far offered in print. But when Clarke stumbles, he stumbles badly. Like many another before him (Anne Edwards is a classic case in point), Clarke tends to rely upon Judy Garland herself as the ultimate authority--and since Garland was notorious for re-engineering the truth to make a good story or to justify her own excesses, this is a serious mistake. Many of the ensuing errors (such as acceptance of the Garland-perpetuated myth that the "Munchkin" midgets were drunken deviates) may seem slight, but they raise questions about the depth of Clarke's research. More damaging to Clarke's credibility, however, is the light in which he casts such figures as Garland's mother, Ethel Milne Gumm, and MGM studio boss Louis B. Mayer, which harken back to Garland's own sometimes hysterical self-justifications rather offering carefully balanced accounts.
Read more ›
4 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Charles Evans on April 13, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I dont get people's negative comments to this book. It is well -written and sensitive -not exploitative or sensational. It is a disturbing tale but this seems to have been the reality of Garland's life. I think Clarke is bring treated poorly by these negative reviews from readers. Would they prefer a sanitized version of her life or are they just in denial about this talented woman's sad tale?
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 7, 2000
Format: Hardcover
If you are looking for a chirpy 'lil biography--this is not it. Clarke's masterly biography draws on extensive interviews and Garland's unpublished memoirs to recount a life as woeful as Job's. With an overbearing mother who hooked young Judy on pills, and a studio (MGM) that mercilessly assaulted her self-image and privacy -- even as she captured the public's adoration as Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz -- Garland never developed personal responsibility or sound judgment.
That led to sexual libertinism, hopeless affairs with married men (Tyrone Power, Orson Welles) and bad marriages (two of her five spouses were gay, including director Vincente Minnelli; her fourth, Mark Herron, had an affair with Peter Allen, daughter Liza's first husband). Clarke unflinchingly details Garland's mood swings, from desperately needy to monstrously selfish.
Yet her resilience was astonishing: triumphant comebacks in A Star Is Born (quickly ruined by bad editing) and in concerts during the '50s and '60s at the London Palladium and Carnegie Hall. Her final years -- estranged from her children, financially strapped, overdosing on pills -- approach great tragedy. Even knowing how it ends, one can't look away.
Sad, yes, but we can all learn from Ms. Garland's unsettled yet fascinating life.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Search

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?