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The Elephant to Hollywood by Michael Caine Books in Review
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The Elephant to Hollywood
by Michael Caine
Henry Holt Company
ISBN 978-0-8050-9390-2
Published November 2010 - Hardcover - 304 pages - $28.00

I remember raving enthusiastically about Sir Michael Caine's first book, What's It All About, and was delighted to hear he'd written another.  This book covers the past eighteen years of his life with just a smattering of older stories and anecdotes from the first book.  Right off the bat you're sucked into this book as you read about a Christmas in Aspen with some well-known friends.  And Sir Michael knows some famous people; quite a few.  His modest and rather poor childhood was compounded by World War Two and having to live away from home under less than savoury circumstances and conditions in some instances.  You'll read about his early jobs and his stint in the British Army, as well as his early forays into theatre and films.  He mentions a good many fellow actors, agents, directors, and friends along the way, and manages never to sound as though he's name-dropping.  In fact, it's very interesting to see who came up the ranks with him; people like Sean Connery, Terence Stamp, and many, many others.  You'll also get wonderful descriptions of Old Hollywood (and Beverly Hills) and some interesting facts along the way.  I found the information about his many films extremely interesting, and it's wonderful to get the finer details right from the source.  Film buffs and fans will go nuts for these kinds of details.  Also very interesting was Sir Michael's family tidbits along with the purchase and sale and purchase of new homes.  His exquisite wife Shakira was (and is) a huge part of his life, and his loving and tender references to her are magical.  Always an English gentleman, Sir Michael's tact is impeccable.  There are lots of film photos to enjoy as well.  I loved the stories of people and places and really loved the "inside scoops" of so many movies and stage plays he's starred in.
Conclusion - Beautifully written, and I see it as a tribute to movies and the people who make them.

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