Hardcover: 202 pages
Publisher: Doubleday; 1st edition (1976)
Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.9 x 1.1 inches
Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #229,172 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #65 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Americana #2014 in Books > Humor & Entertainment > Pop Culture
I could not put this book down! I read it in a day! I recently rediscovered this book, and boy am I glad that I did. I love the passages about his early childhood they were so vibrant so full of life. His loving relationship with his mother and siblings. There were many funny stories like the one about the Eastside Kids and Bogart. There were also many touching stories. Especially the one about his mom's death. Reading this book also reminded me that not only was he a good tough guy, but he was a great song and dance man too!! Cagney by Cagney is reccommended to anyone who loves James Cagney. He was definitely one of a kind.
This book is for the true fan of James Cagney. Mr. Cagney tells his story as no one can -- straightforward and to the point. He pulls no punches and puts to rest the ages old tale about the line, "you dirty rat." Easy reading and extremely enjoyable.(This is my second reading!)
Iam a big James Cagney fan!!!! I got this book when it first came out and read it in about a week!!!!! I still have it in my collection of books on Mr. Cagney. He wonderfully goes through his childhood. His love of his family and how much he loved his mother. A very gentle man, who showed such a mean side on the screen, goes to show what a great actor he was!!!! To learn he painted and was a fine poet too was interesting. Reading of his career and how he looked at acting as just a job, nothing more. There is humor too, that Mr. Cagney always had and expresses very much so in his book!!!!! Iam glad I got it back in 1976, but for all Cagney fans, if your able to find this book, it is a must read. Very enjoyable!!!!!
James Cagney writes like he acts..you walk in the scene...you look the other actor in the eye and you tell him the truth....a rich portrait of e legend and the incredible down to earth qualities that made him into a star and legend..
What a difference a book can make. Anyone that thinks that Jim Cagney is only a hoodlum is missing out on the biggest part of the man. "Once a song and dance man always a song and dance man" Mr. Cagney was a hoofer in his heart along with being a pretty darn good poet. All of this and more honest insights into the people in his life and his fellings on being James Cagney. Truly a must for anyone who finds the actor fascinating. Worth the effort in finding this rare book.
Right from the horse's mouth! Told in Cagney's rat-a-tat-tat style of speech. Even on paper I could hear his voice in my head as I read. Okay, okay, he starts the book off rambling about his childhood exploits. Sounded like a man anxiously reminiscing about the years that made him who he has become. He does so in a hurry, thus leading the reader into a tailspin. But, he does settle down after awhile.Once he hits the point in the book where his entertainment years begin, boy oh boy, hold your hat for an exciting ride. What great stuff. Even better to me as an amateur actor and movie fanatic is the behind the scenes stories Cagney shares from his first person point of view. We're talking early Hollywood stuff, like the fact Clarke Gable, Cagney and many others thought movie making would be a fad. WOW! They all predicted the big Hollywood bust similar to what happened to the Dot Com era in its infancy.Better yet are his many stories, some hilarious while others profound about his take on actors and directors of his day. Cagney pulls no punches when offering his opinions about the people and the movie business during his active years and his take on what he calls movie slop being dished out starting in the 70's. Grumpy old man syndrome? Perhaps, but it's stimulating just the same.Finally, in his later years the rough and tough Cagney turns philosopher. His love of nature and art and life are inspiring to say the least. Even though I just finished reading my copy yesterday I think I'll read it again starting right now.Awesome and Entertaining!
I'm conflicted with this book. Yes, I enjoyed his writing style. It's definitely Cagney and not a ghostwriter. I guess I was puzzled by what he chose to leave out. Mr. Roberts, for example, was one of his later successes. I'd have been interested to know how he felt about the film. How was it to work with Bill Powell and Henry Fonda and a young Jack Lemmon? I think Mr. Roberts is one of his best. You'd never guess it from reading Cagney by Cagney. There's also the issue of Audie Murphy. Cagney and his brother Bill brought Murphy to Hollywood. Had him under personal contract. Groomed and promoted him. Yet there's nothing on Audie Murphy. Then there's his family. His wife is handled as an aside--"my Bill"--and not an actual person. A shadowy character hovering behind him. Not fleshed out at all, yet they were married forever. I imagine her to look like him in drag, only shorter and rounder. There are other small points. His account of the Dead End Kids encounter doesn't quite square with others. He doesn't mention grabbing Gorcey by the hair and repeatedly slamming his head against the wall to get his attention. Gorcey had, allegedly, been muttering Cagney's lines under his breath to mess with his timing. You can't really defend the Dead End Kids. They did lock Grady Sutton in a closet. They did throw a lit pack of firecrackers on top of Bogie as he napped. And they did light Ronald Regan's straw hat on fire...while it was on his head. Cagney played down the incident. Also, there's nothing about his kids, no family life here to speak of. And the constant pose of "just being an old hoofer" starts to wear thin. Good book. It's worth a read. Not a great book.
Cagney by Cagney