Kate remembered

by A. Scott Berg

Paper Book, 2003





New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, c2003.


Recounts the remarkable life of leading lady Katharine Hepburn, presenting a portrait of the four-time Academy Award winner through her intimate conversations and private reflections on love, family, friendship, and show business.


½ (160 ratings; 3.8)

User reviews

LibraryThing member rocketjk
A. Scott Berg was already a well-known biographer when, after a long series of requests, he finally got an interview with Katharine Hepburn in 1983. Hepburn was 75 and Berg was 33. The idea was to interview Hepburn for a piece that would run in Esquire Magazine's 50th Anniversary issue. It was a
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rare occasion for the very private Hepburn to grant an interview in those days. But the two immediately hit it off and began a friendship that last until Hepburn's death in 2003. This book is a memoir of Berg's relationship with the iconic Hepburn in which he provides a picture of the star, gathered during his many dinners and weekends with her both in her New York City apartment and at her longtime family home in Connecticut. During many of these years, Berg was working on a biography of Samuel Goldwyn, and provided Berg background and anecdotes about Goldwyn himself and those early days of Hollywood. Hepburn also made possible the biography of Charles Lindberg for which Berg would go on to win a Pulitzer Prize by providing him a crucial introduction to Lindberg's widow, Anne Morrow Lindberg.

Hepburn also opened up to Berg about her own life, astonishingly long career and romantic relationships, including, of course, the great love of her life, Spencer Tracy. Berg also provides a picture of Hepburn herself: funny, opinionated, often imperious and sometimes more than a little bit of a bully. But it also the picture of a fiercely independent woman, an artist with the highest of standards when it came to acting and the productions she appeared in, whether in movies or in theater. The book alternates between Berg's accounts of his many conversations and experiences with Hepburn and passages that provide a more standard biography of her life. Because Hepburn was such an intriguing figure and Berg is such a fluid and entertaining writer with an enormous amount of affection for his subject, here, Kate Remembered was for me a rewarding reading experience. I would not call it an authoritative biography of Katharine Hepburn, but then neither does Berg.
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LibraryThing member mair
Personal memoir of a friendship with the actress Katharine Hepburn.
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
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'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 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
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other Hepburn biographies but I found this a highly enjoyable read that I would recommend.
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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
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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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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
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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.
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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
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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.
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LibraryThing member BookConcierge
EXCELLENT memoir of the author's time spent getting to know the fabulous Katherine Hepburn. A love story of sorts.


Physical description

xii, 370 p.; 22 cm


0399151648 / 9780399151644
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