Christopher Ondaatje

She Had the Measure of His Manhood

Kate Remembered


Simon & Schuster 318pp £18.99 order from our bookshop

Mr S: The Last Word on Frank Sinatra


Sidgwick & Jackson 262pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

SCOTT BERG IS a superb biographer. I first read his biography of Max Perluns (the brilliant ehtor at Scribner who worked with Hemingway and Scott Fitzgerald), then Goldwyn, and then Lindbergh, for which he received the Pulitzer Prize. At the start of their twenty-year friendship, Katharine Hepburn promised to tell him everything but made one stipulation: he could not publish until she had died – which she eventually did, aged ninety-six, on 29 June this year. Kate Remembered is his loving tribute to Hepburn. ‘She wanted it published as close to her death as possible’, the author stated in an interview, ‘because she knew there’d be so much written about her, and she wanted one good record out there of the truth, as she saw it.’ Berg started putting it together while Hepburn was still alive, but didn’t tell her in case she thought he had betrayed her. ‘I just wrote it up, in 2000, and locked it up.’ After the actress died Berg completed the last three pages.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'What in other hands could have been a dry, pedantic account of Christianity’s birth and evolution becomes in Holla… ,
    • RT : One of my favourite literary magazines is celebrating 40 years this year. Here is the September edition of… ,
    • 'Now that the Thames is too fast-flowing to freeze, its spirit’s devotees ... have found other climes for their pri… ,
    • 'Bythell glowers past his till at a world in slow free fall.' on the travails of a second-hand book… ,
    • 'It is a scent of animal wrath, of instinctive need, of brutal life which affects the cultured nostrils of our civi… ,
    • 'The day produced countless stories of chance, of people taking one route or another without realising that the dec… ,
    • In this month's 'Silenced Voices', looks at the case of Azimjon Askarov, the journalist and human rights… ,