16 of 21 people found the following review helpful
A Ludicrous Attempt To Have The Last Word,
This review is from: Natalie Wood (Paperback)
Well, I just received Gavin Lambert's book on Natalie Wood, and after trudging through this monotonous, overblown biography, the conclusion is as follows: it's boring as hell! (I can't say I haven't been warned). This is the "wonderful" biography of Natalie that is supposed to set the record straight? It boasts 78 photos, but instead of being included in a glossy pictures section, they are widespread on various pages in the book so that they appear grainy. It seems to me that it was written as a rebuttal, and to paint Lana Wood as a greedy, vicious person (she was obviously not interviewed), and to make childish slaps at her, when she was not given the opportunity to tell her side of it. Robert Wagner seems threatened by anyone who knew Natalie before he, Lambert and Mart Crowley did - dismissing all of the people Natalie befriended before who offered their insights in "Natasha: The Biography Of Natalie Wood" as vultures who barely made her aquaintance and who are weaving fantasies about her. Basically, Wagner is uncomfortable with the aspects of Natalie's life that he was not involved in. It doesn't really attempt to get behind Natalie's persona any, like "Natasha" did, and of course, it doesn't acknowledge Natalie's love for Jimmy Williams, her first boyfriend, the rape by a famous actor, or what happened on the night of her death, hastily tying up loose ends and making her death sound so simple. Lambert wrote this book for Wagner, there's no question, and Natasha and Courtney are hardly mentioned at all. Did Lambert actually do any in-depth research? As well, there are allegations that Nick Gurdin may not have been Natalie's or Lana's father, and then there's Natasha Lofft, who has not proven with DNA that she is actually Natalie's half sister, but Wagner and the girls have no problem believing that she is, but they dismiss Suzanne Finstad's book as speculation and trash? I'll believe this claimant's story when I see proof! At least Finstad was able to remain somewhat objective and unbiased, since she did not know Natalie (and she did try to get Wagner's input, but he refused) which is obviously not the case with this pathetic attempt at a so-called "definitive" biography. Much of the book appears to be written quickly, but at least it does name the film Natalie turned down, which was reputed to have the actor who raped her in the cast. And of course, it has to dispel all the allegations of Wagner's sexual orientation, and what played the role in the demise of his first marriage to Natalie (heaven forbid that anyone attempt to tarnish the reputation of Prince Valiant).
As much of a disappointment as this book is, I'm glad I purchased it so I can compare it to "Natasha" and Lana's book to try to decipher what is closer to the truth. At least I didn't have to spend too much money on it!
Avoid it like the plague.
Whatever the truth, I hope that Natalie is at peace.