The Secret Life of Siegfried & Roy: How the Tiger Kings Tamed Las Vegas

Jim Mydlach, Author, Jim Lavery, Author, Lou Mydlach, Author . Phoenix $24.95 (247p) ISBN 978-1-59777-560-1

In this light biography of Siegfried and Roy, the authors note that the entertainers kept their intimate lives private, leaving little for would-be biographers to reveal. Jim Mydlach, the duo’s security officer for 25 years, his son Louis Mydlach, Roy’s bodyguard after the tiger mauling in 2003, and Jim Lavery, longtime show consultant, pad their account with collateral material—the rise of the big Vegas hotels, Siegfried and Roy’s various homes, parks and animal purchases, the vogue for “white” wild animals, the construction of a dolphin attraction at the Mirage and Liberace’s sexual proclivities. Occasionally, they include actual Siegfried and Roy gossip, but it’s in a coy, wink-wink voice: “Insiders say beefcakes, not cupcakes, trigger their sexual appetites.” While the authors try for a balanced narrative, it comes to light at the end that two of the authors have significant problems with their subjects. Louis sued Siegfried over his treatment of Roy, and Lavery sued Roy after he manipulated Lavery’s lifelong girlfriend into ditching him. This isn’t a comprehensive study of the work of Siegfried and Roy, but fans will still have fun with it. (June)

Reviewed on: 04/21/2008
Release date: 06/01/2008
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