Paul Newman: A Life – by Shawn Levy – independent book review – Biography
Warning to ALL Paul Newman fans! You may like him better if you DON’T read this book. Awarded three stars on Goodreads. I can’t say I began reading this book with objectivity. I am a lifelong Paul Newman fan. I will say that I got to know him better through this book and discovered a much more complicated actor-racer-entrepreneur-philanthropist than I expected. In fact, in many ways, he was a study of contradictions. He was an inherently self-absorbed human, blessed with many gifts and much luck, who spent his life pursuing personal passions, often regardless of the needs of those closest to him. His growing career success meant he was quite the absent father — especially to the three children of his first marriage. He said he was grateful above all things for his 50 year marriage to Joanne Woodward — but he was not always faithful to or supportive of her. He was able to provide for sick children (Hole in the Wall Camp), develop an amazingly successful business (Newman’s Own), and win the admiration of the acting community — but he had persistent issues with intimacy in relationships with those closest to him. It’s an interesting read. A bit too much detail on the auto racing aspects — but then, I’m not a fan of that part. More about Shawn Levy.