Norma Jean: My Secret Life with Marilyn Monroe

Ted Jordan, Author William Morrow & Company $18.95 (255p) ISBN 978-0-688-09118-7
Jordan (ne Friedman) moved from his Ohio birthplace to Hollywood where he met 17-year-old model Norma Jean, who shared his ambitions for a movie career, in 1943. He would, according to his memoir, become her lover and remain a friend throughout her life. Withholding judgments, and also revealing much about his own falls from grace, Jordan describes how Marilyn Monroe deliberately used sex to further her career. We read of her affairs with the author's uncle, bandleader Ted Lewis who purportedly supplied her with drugs; with many more men than previously reported; and with women, including Jordan's wife, stripper Lili St. Cyr. This detailed albeit sympathetic account is disturbing and believable. Jordan claims to possess Monroe's ``little red book,'' given him by the actress ``shortly before her death,'' a diary only rumored to exist. Its innocuous entries contain no secret information, maintains the author, who asserts as well that Monroe's death was an ``accidental suicide.'' Photos not seen by PW. Doub le day Book Club alternate. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1989
Release date: 10/01/1989
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