Life Is Too Short

Mickey Rooney, Jr., Author Villard Books $22.5 (0p) ISBN 978-0-679-40195-7
At age two in 1922, Joe Yule Jr. joined his parents on the vaudeville circuit in an act that was disbanded when Joe Sr. decamped. On their own, mother and son went looking for work in Hollywood, where little Joe metamorphosed into Mickey Rooney. His racy, comic, poignant autobiography recalls the highs and lows during the years he made more than 200 films, including the hugely popular Andy Hardy series and musicals with Judy Garland. Rooney is candid on the subjects of his eight marriages (the first to the late Ava Gardner) as well as the drinking and gambling that scarred many of his relationships. Dropped by MGM, where he was paid a ``pittance'' for performing in films which earned billions, Rooney established new careers, winning awards for his TV roles and achieving a triumph in the long-running Broadway musical Sugar Babies . Fans will be cheered to read that in his aging years Rooney still explodes with ideas and plans, such as starting a studio to produce ``clean, wonderful'' films--and outclassing the 94-year-old George Burns. ``Since actuaries have proven that married men live longer,'' the much-wed Rooney figures to surpass Burns, who married just once, and still be entertaining us in the year 2672. Photos not seen by PW. 150,000 first printing; author tour. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 03/04/1991
Release date: 03/01/1991
Hardcover - 978-0-679-40287-9
Mass Market Paperbound - 341 pages - 978-0-345-37643-5
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