Kate remembered

by A. Scott Berg

Hardcover, 2003

Status

Available

Publication

New York : Putnam, c2003.

Description

"For seven decades Katharine Hepburn played a leading role in the popular culture of the twentieth century - reigning as an admired actress, a beloved movie star, and a treasured icon of the modern American woman. She also remained one of the most private of all the public figures of her time." "In 1983 - at the age of seventy-five, her career cresting - the four-time Academy Award winner opened her door to biographer A. Scott Berg - then thirty-three - and began a special friendship, one that endured to the end of her illustrious life." "From the start, Scott Berg felt that Katharine Hepburn intended his role to be not just that of a friend but also of a chronicler, a confidant who might record for posterity her thoughts and feelings. Over the next twenty years, Kate used their many hours together to reveal all that came to mind, often reflecting on the people and episodes of her past, occasionally on the meaning of life." "Here are the stories from those countless intimate conversations, and much more. In addition to recording heretofore untold biographical details of her entire phenomenal career and her famous relationships with such men as Spencer Tracy and Howard Hughes, Kate Remembered also tells the amusing, often emotional story of one of the most touching friendships in her final years. Scott Berg provides his own memories of Katharine Hepburn offstage - quiet dinners in her town house in New York City, winter swims (she swam, he watched) in the Long Island Sound at Fenwick, her home in Connecticut, weekend visits with family members and dear friends ... even some unusual appearances by the likes of Michael Jackson and Warren Beatty. Finally, Kate Remembered discusses the legendary actress's moving farewell, during which her mighty personality surrendered at last to her failing body - all the while remaining true to her courageous character."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member hrissliss
It was a decent book. Not stupendous, nothing that I'm going to force my friends to read. I don't generally read biographies, so that might have accounted for my lackluster response to this, since Scott Berg seems relatively experienced at writing biographies.
What made it interesting was the 'character' of Hepburn. She was an interesting woman: never married, one of the few actresses who continued acting on stage after she hit gold as a movie star, and one of the few actresses who carried her career into her 80's. Typically, she's my favorite actress. (And seeing her and Humphrey Bogart together in "African Queen" made me so incredibly warm and squishy inside.)
While the personal nature of much of the book was appreciated, I had wanted more of a biography of her life and not an account of her friendship with Berg. I really don't have much more to say on the book. No real impression. 6/10
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LibraryThing member bkwyrmy43
Read about half the book, wasn't very interesting and not enough about Kate. Didn't want the dirt, just a little more about what makes her tick.
LibraryThing member Jua
Wow! I know the author is honored to have been able to become a part of Katharine Hepburn's life. It's hard to get to know such a private person. But Kate allowed Mr. Berg to do just that. His writing is wonderful.
LibraryThing member mair
Personal memoir of a friendship with the actress Katharine Hepburn.
LibraryThing member librarianjojo
I was a big fan of Kate, as an actress. While the author respected her, I'm not sure I'd have felt the same if I knew her. Ah...but the gal did know how to act!
LibraryThing member Tiree
The author of this book developed a close relationship with Katharine Hepburn in the later years of her life. It's an interesting look at her life based on the time he spent with her, so it's a mixture of his stories about those times and the stories she told him about her life. Haven't read any other Hepburn biographies but I found this a highly enjoyable read that I would recommend.… (more)
LibraryThing member neddludd
The author was a great fan of Ms. Hepburn, and good fortune introduced them. She was a notoriously reclusive person, but for some reason--a great friendship, an induction into her family--almost took place, and the two stayed close for decades. He notes that this is not a critical biography but rather his reporting of Hepburn's views on a wide range of topics shared with him on countless one-on-one sessions at her NYC townhouse or her Connecticut weekend home. Other Hollywood legends befriended the author as well, including Irene Selznick. Warren Beatty chased him to get Hepburn to accept a role in a film Beatty was making. Kate emerges as a committed artist, someone to whom stretching and challenging her creative abilities were very important; for example, throughout her career she continued to work in the theater as well as film. As a fly on the wall you learn which directors she liked and which she loathed, as well as her feeling about her own movies and co-stars. The book is well written and candy for anyone who has ever loved the movies.… (more)
LibraryThing member AmberTheHuman
I remember I was showering at a hotel in Vegas when my then-boyfriend knocked on the bathroom door to tell me that Katharine Hepburn had died. I was pretty sad. When I went to visit my parents later that year, I was in Costco with my mom and she offered to buy me this book. I have read it many times, and lent it out. It's not a biography of Hepburn in the traditional sense - but if you enjoy her work it is a must read.… (more)
LibraryThing member BookConcierge
EXCELLENT memoir of the author's time spent getting to know the fabulous Katherine Hepburn. A love story of sorts.
LibraryThing member Murphy-Jacobs
This biography is a little unusual, as it is really A. Scott Berg's story about a woman he knew, admired, and even loved -- Katherine Hepburn. This particular angle on biography was new to me and it seemed to work very well. Berg makes no pretense about impartiality, but he's also a professional biographer, so he avoids fulsome praise or prurient detail to hold the reader's interest. Instead, we get to see a very interesting woman through the eyes of a person well situated to watch her.

The book was surprisingly moving, too, as it follows Hepburn through her later years up to the time of her death, interrupting the current timeline with stories from her past, almost like a novel. No dry recitation of vital statistics here.
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