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Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man Hardcover – February 16, 2016
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"This is a book Star Trek fans will love." ―The Philadelphia Inquirer
"Shatner takes readers behind the nonemotive Vulcan visage to reveal the poet, photographer, devoted stage actor, recovering alcoholic, and formidable listener who was his friend. A fond remembrance of Leonard Nimoy by one who knew him like no other." ―Kirkus Reviews
"Touching on Nimoy’s other pursuits, including his photography, poetry, writing, and directing, Shatner offers up a lovely and moving tribute to his beloved friend." ―Booklist
“Essentially a traditional biography, but one that is filtered through the prism of its author’s friendship with his subject.” ―The Washington Post
"Trekkies will want this for the insider stories from Captain Kirk himself, but fans of candid, emotion-filled biographies will adore this account because it's a treasure trove of information." ―Library Journal (starred review)
"A resonant retrospective of one of pop culture's great partnerships." ―Publishers Weekly
"Shatner delivers a raw and honest look at the life of Leonard Nimoy through the filter of someone who loved him like a brother. "Star Trek" fans aren't the only ones who should read this definitive biography of the man who was much more than Mr. Spock." -Associated Press
"Star Trek fans looking for a trip down Memory Alpha lane should enjoy Leonard, William Shatner’s tribute to fellow icon Leonard Nimoy, the unemotional Mr. Spock to his passionate Captain Kirk." -USA Today
"These two men shared an extraordinary life together, and fans will enjoy the anecdotes and insights into the television industry and ‘Star Trek’ in particular. At it’s core, though, it’s a loving tribute from one man to his best friend." -The National Post
"Unexpectedly poignant. An eyebrow-raising tribute to a fascinating man." -Maclean's
"Highly readable and entertaining." -Examiner.com
"If you want to get to know the men in a funny and brutally honest way pick up Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship With A Remarkable Man." -Red Carpet Crash
About the Author
William Shatner has worked as a musician, producer, director, and celebrity pitchman, and notably played Captain Kirk on Star Trek from 1966 to 1969 and in seven Star Trek films. He won an Emmy and a Golden Globe for his role as attorney Denny Crane on the TV drama Boston Legal. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Elizabeth.
David Fisher is the author of more than twenty New York Times bestsellers, including William Shatner's autobiography Up Till Now. He lives in New York.
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I learned a lot about Leonard Nimoy that I didn't know, not just as an exceptional actor and Mr. Spock, but as a family man, a great friend, and a perfectionist in his career as well as his interests outside his work. And he had so many other interests, from photography to flying, and singing to poetry and writing, to the useful art of bicycling. He was truly a multi-talented man. A man who gave his all in everything, and tried very hard to make things better in the world around him. He made many contributions that will continue to be felt and appreciated by many in the years ahead.
The contributions to this book by Leonard Nimoy's family and friends were wonderful inclusions that brought a clearer, more personal touch to his personality, and spotlighted many of his struggles, worries and fears, his charm and humor, and his ultimate success. Some of the contributors include John DeLancie, Steve Guttenberg, D C Fontana, Adam Nimoy, George Takei, Tom Selleck, and others.
What a great guy is Leonard Nimoy.
And I believe he would have applauded and understood William Shatner s choice to stay at a Red Cross event he was already at when the tragic death occurred, making money for the needy, rather than crying off to go to his friends funeral, and thereby letting down everyone at the charity event depending on him. Shatner's daughters attended the funeral, and thus represented his presence. And after reading Leonard Nimoy s own choices, and his strong feelings to help the less fortunate, I think he might very well have chosen the same, had the shoe been on the other foot. But that, of course, is just my personal opinion based on what I just read.
I enjoyed and recommend this book. I have never attended a Star Trek convention, but I have always loved Star Trek and it's characters, and had enough admiration for Leonard Nimoy's Spock, and interest in Star Trek in general, to make this book a must read.
One aside, in the last few years word has come out over what a total @#$@ Roddenberry was. A truly ugly incident recounted in this book just cements that.
Shatner also recounts how he and Nimoy fell out in Nimoy's last years over Shatner's wanting him to appear in the documentary "The Captains". I'm sure Nimoy put up with a lot over the years with Shatner's ego. Still they were friends of a sort for decades. But Shatner claims that after an incident where he recorded Nimoy speaking at a convention to use in this documentary (after Nimoy had said no) Nimoy never spoke or communicated with him directly again. Shatner claims he's a loss to know what he did so wrong - but he often claimed such blindspots and misunderstandings in past instances in the book. He's rather like the Jane Austen character who says that selfishness has to be forgiven because there's no hope of a cure.And in a way, he's right in that with his narcissistic personality, you either have to accept that he is as he is, or drop him -- because he's unlikely to change. Shatner recounts sending Nimoy a touching letter (which he includes in the book) after trying to reach him personally and also through third parties. But Nimoy never respond to that either. Perhaps he was unable to, perhaps he never received it. Perhaps he'd just reached his "frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn" limit. So they were estranged when Nimoy died. Very sad, both for Shatner and Nimoy after their many years of professional association, acquaintance and friendship, but also sad for fans. Star Trek had some wonderful values. As an admitted fan, I don't pretend that the actors or even Roddenberry the creator and producer actually lived the values it purported. But it is still sad to hear Nimoy and Shatner ended estranged.
This is a reasonably well written book, with some nice moments and some moments where a few more cracks are added to the Star Trek facade. For Trek fans, it's worth a read.
who could not have enjoyed this trip down memory lane more.
Top international reviews
I loved Bill's candour and honesty about the tough times they shared in their personal lives, and learning about the insecurity and instability these stars encounter from the studios and networks when all the time to us as the observers they look like they've got it made.
This book is the sharing of the rollercoaster memories between two good friends, and I've really enjoyed being able to share those memories.
Mr Shatner's books always seem to fly just below the warts-and-all radar. There's enough self-deprecation and sincerity to show willing at being candid and offset the notorious - but probably justified - egotism.
For all that this is a tribute to the late Leonard Nimoy, it is without question a book by and about William Shatner. I'm fine with that. Less so the use of quoted archive research, at a guess the ghost writer's contribution, that makes a lot of the material about Mr Nimoy very obviously second or third hand.
There's a bit of obvious, self-interested lid-lifting on the nature of friendship among ensemble TV casts, which goes a little way to disrupt the long-established legends about difficult relationships among the Star Trek "family".
I trust the fact that there was a late-arriving but genuine relationship between the two men. They seem to have presented a comfortable, united public face, but then, you know ... actors.
I learned a few things not covered in the Memoirs books or I Am Spock.
A world where art and philosophy interact with business, money and uncertainty, but also with ego.
Shatner describes it very accurately and, I must say, with a great deal of honesty and modesty, which is quite a change for anyone knowing his sometimes self-inflating statements about himself and his career. The man has matured. So, yes this is about him, but more than everything about his long term friend and acting partner Leonard Nimoy.
I thouhg I knew both actors, having enjoyably read books from both of them in the past, but this one is different and has a sense of last tribute to his dearest friend.
A sense of deepness but also regret and nostalgy, not met before.
With some very moving parts such as the loss of their friendship the very last years of the life of Nimoy, for which Shatner is at a loss understanding why this happened, and which apparently he failed to understand, despite having tried several times to come back to Leonard.
It is difficult, while you are reading it, to stop and not read it at once from A to Z.
But it is equally difficult to arrive at the last page, because you miss it already.
For those of us who loved the Star Trek and Mission Impossible TV series, this makes for great reading to understand a little more about the man who, for ever will be known by the name of the alien character he helped create in the TV series Star Trek - Spock.
A fascinating read.
Read in conjunction with Nimoy's second autobiography 'I am Spock', this is of course a 'must have' for Star Trek fans; that said, I am looking forward to the forthcoming documentary by Nimoy's son Adam.
Ideally, i would welcome a well-researched and comprehensive biography like 'From Sawdust to Stardust', Terry Lee Rioux's wonderful work on DeForest Kelly. This is not it.
If you get the DVD you will find it is best to decide which you might prefer.....Nothing in the book is particularly new.
Actors ! These two were obsessed with money and how to capitalise off their Star Trek characters but did not respect Trekies. Typical.
I was surprised that not only Nimoy but Shatner were Jewish. The former much more Orthodox than the latter. Interesting.