Trade Ed. Random House Audio 2010
CD ISBN 9780307877093 $45.00 Eleven CDs
DD ISBN 9780307877109 $22.50
Library Ed. Books on Tape 2010
CD ISBN 9780307877116 $45.00 Eleven CDs
Much of Gypsy Rose Lee’s life consisted of living within the mythology that her mother, Rose Horvick, created. It’s not surprising, then, that this book seems more like revisionist history than biography. Apart from a few interviews, most of its information comes from tabloids, Gypsy’s memoir, and unreliable source material. (Rose wasn’t above forging documents.) Bernadette Dunne’s matter-of-fact narration keeps things moving, but not even Dunne can keep the frequent time leaps from being confusing. By keeping her voice unemotional, Dunne recounts allegations that Mama Rose eviscerated a kitten and even may have killed a man. Abbott’s biography is focused more on stage mother-monster Rose than on Gypsy, and by the end, listeners won’t know much more about the “real” Gypsy than they learned from Sondheim’s musical. S.J.H. © AudioFile 2011, Portland, Maine [Published: JANUARY 2011]
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