My Husband, My Friend

Neile McQueen Toffel, Author Atheneum Books $17.95 (327p) ISBN 978-0-689-11637-7
Penina Spiegel notes in her biography McQueen (reviewed above) that Toffel, McQueen's first wife, informed her about material never before revealed about the late actor. Toffel, however, here presents her own, more intimate story. The affinity between her and her husband was forged by similarly deprived childhoods, she writes; like him, she was neglected by a promiscuous mother. Surviving a Japanese prison camp in the Philippines during World War II, she returned to the U.S. and established herself as a dancer on the Broadway stage in the early 1950s, and then married Steve McQueen. The couple settled in Hollywood, where he rose to stardom. They had two children before their 16-year marriage ended in divorce after McQueen's headlined affair with Ali McGraw. The breakup was the result of her husband's womanizing, public scandals, boozing and drug taking, according to Toffel. Yet she continued to regard him as her friend, she maintains, and they remained bed partners during his later marriages. The book ends with the poignant account of McQueen's death from cancer in 1980. Photos not seen by PW. January 17
Reviewed on: 01/01/1986
Release date: 01/01/1986
Paperback - 341 pages - 978-1-4259-1818-7
Open Ebook - 978-1-4490-7157-8
Hardcover - 92 pages - 978-0-88690-288-9
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