• Historical Fiction
  • General Fiction and Women Writers
  • YA Fiction
  • Suspense and Thrillers
  • Memoirs and Non Fiction
  • Classics and Mashups

Monday, December 3, 2012

"Marlene" by Marlene Dietrich~Uninteresting...

A fascinating self-portrait of one of the greatest entertainers of Hollywood’s golden age

Film star. Cabaret sensation. Recording artist. Writer. Marlene Dietrich was nothing short of enchanting—and remains so as she chronicles her fabulous rise to stardom in Marlene. From her early career in Germany as a chorus girl to her breakout role as Lola in The Blue Angel to her courageous wartime tours, Dietrich recounts a life that captivates on the page just as she smoldered on the screen. She writes passionately of her friends—including Charlie Chaplin, Orson Welles, and Edith Piaf, among many others—and she shares memories of what she calls her greatest accomplishment: entertaining the Allied troops during World War II. A sustained expression of her bold, sophisticated style, Marlene reminds us why Dietrich remains an international icon and a true Hollywood legend.

Marlene Dietrich (1901–1992) was a film actress and accomplished singer, widely considered among the greatest female stars of all time, and ranked number nine on the American Film Institute’s list of the fifty greatest American screen legends. Born in Germany in 1901, Dietrich was a classically trained violinist, but she shifted her focus to acting and singing when she injured her wrist in 1921. Her breakthrough film role in Josef von Sternberg’s The Blue Angel led to her contract with Paramount Studios and a string of Hollywood hits, including Shanghai Express. She became an American citizen and strongly supported the Allied effort during World War II; in 1947, she was awarded the Medal of Freedom for her contributions. During Dietrich’s later career, she performed almost exclusively as a cabaret artist, entertaining audiences worldwide. She died in Paris in 1992.

Published by:   Open Road Publishing
Pages:  276
Genre:  Non-Fiction


Rarely do I tag a book as virtually uninteresting and lacking inspiration, but Marlene Dietrich's autobiography is both dull and monotoned.  Her "voice" in this book is flat.  It came across without compassion or passion, and I found it difficult to grab hold of in whole.  There was no real person coming across in the book.  It seemed to be a catalog of events told by a person broadly disassociated from them.  While there were significant events that occurred in her life, Marlene seemed to have almost a cavalier attitude about them, and aside from a couple of relationships with famous men, she lived in an emotionally disconnected manner.  I found the book unsatisfying, and I couldn't finish it.

I won't recommend the book to others for the above reasons.




I share your opinion, and I recommend that you read the book that Marlene's daughter, Maria Riva, wrote. In addition to the exhaustive details, Maria provides a lot of insight into why Marlene probably omitted so much of herself from her book.

Share your thoughts!

Blogaholic Designs”=