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James Dean: Little Boy Lost - An Intimate Biography

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James Dean: Little Boy Lost, by Hyams, Joe with Jay Hyams


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James Dean: Little Boy Lost, by Hyams, Joe with Jay Hyams

30 review for James Dean: Little Boy Lost - An Intimate Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    Aaron

    This book was very well written. I was very pleased with it because I have read other books about Jimmy but they always felt very one sided. For instance, one book I read leaned very heavily on his gay relationships almost pushing the point that Dean was more gay then bisexual. However, Mr. Hyams does a good job of explaining Jimmy's relationships and he says that "Yes Jimmy did have relationships with men but their were relationships with women too. A couple and one in particular that might cou This book was very well written. I was very pleased with it because I have read other books about Jimmy but they always felt very one sided. For instance, one book I read leaned very heavily on his gay relationships almost pushing the point that Dean was more gay then bisexual. However, Mr. Hyams does a good job of explaining Jimmy's relationships and he says that "Yes Jimmy did have relationships with men but their were relationships with women too. A couple and one in particular that might could have won him over for marriage if the women had been willing." Another thing I really liked about Mr. Hyams book is that he is very unbiased and being a Journalist he is able to take all the interviews, recordings and testimonials of Jimmy's friends, family and co-workers and make a very clear and understandable portrait of who James Dean was. He was a different type of person than I thought he was but it doesn't make me like him any less than before I read this book. I felt like it was more that I understood where Jimmy was coming from with all the experiences he had been through and all the people he met. I was just more saddened because it seems like he was a man who wanted people to know him but didn't want to let anyone get close to him because they might either reject him or hurt him (He feared.) I do feel, after reading Mr. Hyams book, that James Dean really was a little boy lost in a world that didn't know how to approach such a young man as him or how to respond to him. Every time someone tried to get close he would pull away or if he did let the close he would eventually do something to hurt them just to give them a warning of "Don't get to close to me, you might not like what you see." The other thing that bothered me, however, was the way Hollywood used the darker parts of Jimmy and used them to their advantage and the just left him be. It seems like every time this extortion went on it would just leave Jimmy in a bad place. I still love James Dean even in spite of all the madness, the hurt and pain surrounding him. I wish he could have found the salve for his wounds and broken heartedness. I am sad that he died the way he did and that his life was as chaotic as it was. I wish he could have had a better life. One that was fulfilling, happy and peaceful. Mr. Hyams is gone but I am so grateful that he wrote this biography about Jimmy Dean, his friend and an actor. This would definitely be my recommendation to anyone who is a Dean fan who wants a non-biased whole life biography of James Dean. Please chose James Dean: Little Boy Lost - An Intimate Biography!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Colleen

    The first James Dean biography I ever read. While I'm not a particular fan of the late Joe Hyams, his bio of Dean is very balanced and fair, recollections of the young man he knew and others knew, fond memories of the intense young actor and some others not so fond. In other words, he presents Jimmy as very human, with problems and moodiness but also with great talent and instinct for performing and appealing to others. Reading about Dean's early life for me was very emotional. The loss of his be The first James Dean biography I ever read. While I'm not a particular fan of the late Joe Hyams, his bio of Dean is very balanced and fair, recollections of the young man he knew and others knew, fond memories of the intense young actor and some others not so fond. In other words, he presents Jimmy as very human, with problems and moodiness but also with great talent and instinct for performing and appealing to others. Reading about Dean's early life for me was very emotional. The loss of his beloved mother to cancer when he was so young, his father abandoning him to live with relatives in Fairmount, Indiana, and how father and son's relationship never really recovered. I found it very upsetting to hear how Winton Dean reacted to the news of his son's death, all the lost time that he could never get back, and Jimmy was gone forever. Hyams also shows the reader Dean's relationships (working, romantic, sexual, platonic friendships) with both men and women, unlike some who try to make it seem like Dean was strictly straight or gay. I think Dean's pal John Gilmore described him well - "multi-sexual". I think that may have been part of his appeal and how so many identified with him and what he represented. Hyams also gives his insight into Jimmy's romance with Pier Angeli and how, just like with his mother, Dean kept a lock of her hair. There is no doubt in my mind that Jimmy was deeply in love with Pier and remained so until the day he died. His relationships with Barbara Glenn, Dizzy Sheridan, Arlene Sachs, Lilli Kardell, Ursula Andress, Janette Miller, Elizabeth Taylor, Mercedes McCambridge, Beverly Long, Vampira, Eartha Kitt, Natalie Wood, Christine White and Julie Harris are also nicely recounted. No matter what kind of relationship he had with them, it's clear that Dean did enjoy and need the company of females, who in turn could be mother, sister and in some cases lover to him. The men who figured in his life - Rogers Brackett, Gilmore, Dennis Hopper, Nick Adams, Leonard Rosemann, Sal Mineo, Nick Ray, Bill Bast, Martin Landau, Rod Steiger, Roy Schatt, Lew Bracker, Arthur Loew Jr, Stewart Stern - were insightful and interesting to learn about as well. Of course, it would be impossible to show an entire persona of someone in a book, or the facets of their connections to others, but I think Hyams captured a lot of Dean's personality (at least as he knew it, as he points out, Dean seemed to be many different things to different people). You felt like you were there, witnessing Jimmy's life and it does seem that he had some kind of premonition that he would die young in a speeding car. Such as when Dean describes a dream he had about his mother not long before his death - well, I don't think I need to elaborate on that. He also seemed to give his Siamese cat, Marcus (a gift from Elizabeth Taylor) to his friend Janette as if he wouldn't be returning from the race at Salinas. A few of his friends felt that he was saying goodbye forever. Hyams also recounts, almost minute by minute, what those who knew Jimmy were doing the night he died and their reactions to learning of his tragic accident, along with the sometimes ironic and tragic paths and endings for many closely associated or intertwined with Dean. The book also follows Dean's career from his early days as a struggling actor in New York to his successful (but brief) stint in Hollywood. It's amazing that Dean was pretty much unknown to the public at the time of his passing yet with the release of "Rebel Without A Cause" and "Giant" (for which he received an Oscar nomination), he became a household name, forever after symbolizing troubled youth and an icon ever since. What is it about Dean (much like other icons like Elvis, Marilyn or John Wayne) that makes him resonate so much all these years later? Makes one wonder if he had lived how different it may have all turned out. Leaving behind only three films and a small handful of television appearances, Dean retains an aura of mystery yet something that speaks to the youth inside of us. I am in agreement with a previous reviewer that this book should be reissued. I have the original paperback version and it would be great to see it out as a new edition, perhaps with a new introduction (obviously not by Hyams, but perhaps someone associated with him or Dean). "Little Boy Lost" is appropriately titled. It makes you long to reach out to him, comfort him and get to know him. Those who had the chance to know him were fortunate, even though his soul and star blazed only for a brief time on this earth. His legacy lives on.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Ramie

    I first discovered James Dean not in a movie or on a t-shirt but in my library. I grew up one county away from where he died. On one of the anniversaries my library had an end cap featuring a James Dean display. I was at that age where you might still hit the childrens section (YA didn’t have its own section then) but also wanted to be grown up, so I grabbed one of the books. I have been obsessed ever since (yes I do have a brick from his high school and pictures of me at his grave in Fairmount) I first discovered James Dean not in a movie or on a t-shirt but in my library. I grew up one county away from where he died. On one of the anniversaries my library had an end cap featuring a James Dean display. I was at that age where you might still hit the childrens section (YA didn’t have its own section then) but also wanted to be grown up, so I grabbed one of the books. I have been obsessed ever since (yes I do have a brick from his high school and pictures of me at his grave in Fairmount). I can’t tell you how I became obsessed with an actor via a book though I suspect having gone through a lot as a kid, including having lost a parent even younger than he when did and feeling as awkward as he seemed played a role. This book feels more “real” than those who try to aim for the tabloid angle or those who turn him into some perfect angel. There’s nothing shocking here if you know anything about James Dean. It covers his sexuality, his mother’s death, his desires to be behind the camera, his failed romances. It’s a good starting point for those wanting to know more about the actor.

  4. 5 out of 5

    THOMAS RYASKO

    Ian Fleming the finale of his right optic proved through out the drama of JAmes Dean that the Cotter Pin Pulled and touched a Basanet bound young fellow whom possibly grew in to the Albertsons Starbucks working fellow I will never forget he was the favorite handsome fellow through out every Olympic track and field Finding a young fellow in Algonac in Suspenders whom was acouiple heads taller where his intravenous happemned that led to his disaster Meaning he pulled the Cotter pin and it was even Ian Fleming the finale of his right optic proved through out the drama of JAmes Dean that the Cotter Pin Pulled and touched a Basanet bound young fellow whom possibly grew in to the Albertsons Starbucks working fellow I will never forget he was the favorite handsome fellow through out every Olympic track and field Finding a young fellow in Algonac in Suspenders whom was acouiple heads taller where his intravenous happemned that led to his disaster Meaning he pulled the Cotter pin and it was eventually put into an office draw like The Jolly green Giant products Ill need to know the Length of time from if said cotter pin was found that from Auto of front steering and suspension to said office desk cause this young fellow learned to have a heart but That Blue cadillac and Hinge folklore about Brief pauses in Electronic game slots added up so He decided to begin his ending the Catter pin thief at 3rd and Fairfax and his left optic lived to Fontana to A pizza parlor with a football talk in Progression

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ted Hinkle

    In 1955, as an eleven year old boy in Indianapolis, I was intrigued by this defiant, independent farm boy from Fairmount, IN. He was a local Indiana boy who made it "big", yet conveyed a mystic with which our generation could relate; rebellion, independence, yet, sensitivity and insecurity. Joe Hyams skillfully and completely depicts the life and legacy of this short lived icon, "James Dean: Little Boy Lost", but always remembered. In 1955, as an eleven year old boy in Indianapolis, I was intrigued by this defiant, independent farm boy from Fairmount, IN. He was a local Indiana boy who made it "big", yet conveyed a mystic with which our generation could relate; rebellion, independence, yet, sensitivity and insecurity. Joe Hyams skillfully and completely depicts the life and legacy of this short lived icon, "James Dean: Little Boy Lost", but always remembered.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Darrin

    This is the first book I read about James Dean. I liked it a lot and it gave some real insight into the actor behind the image. It was interesting to read about many people’s personal experiences with Dean.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Julie Penzenik

    This biography was excellent. After reading, I felt as if I knew James Dean and his friends personally. It gives an informative and entertaining glimpse into the struggles and achievements of a most talented character, both on and off screen.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Jay Kennedy

    Incredible and honest. It's always great when an author can tell the story from all the personality sides of a subject without showing a bias. Hyams did a tremendous job here, well done. Incredible and honest. It's always great when an author can tell the story from all the personality sides of a subject without showing a bias. Hyams did a tremendous job here, well done.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Bruno

    Sad story... It's surprising how you can be affected by a book eventhough you know how it ends! I found myself wishing for another fate for this incredible actor named James Dean! Sad story... It's surprising how you can be affected by a book eventhough you know how it ends! I found myself wishing for another fate for this incredible actor named James Dean!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kenneth Flusche

    Amazing insite of a man who died too young

  11. 5 out of 5

    James Siejak

    Interesting bio of Dean by the people who actually knew him.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Hyden

    Before reading this revelatory and very well-written book, I had preconceptions about James Dean. I admired his style, but knew a little bit about his less than appealing history. Having completed this book, I get the impression that the author, who knew Dean personally, has held back on some of the more appalling escapades of his subject out of some loyalty to his friend's memory. Nonetheless, what I have read has caused the scales to fall from eyes. My previous admiration for James Dean has al Before reading this revelatory and very well-written book, I had preconceptions about James Dean. I admired his style, but knew a little bit about his less than appealing history. Having completed this book, I get the impression that the author, who knew Dean personally, has held back on some of the more appalling escapades of his subject out of some loyalty to his friend's memory. Nonetheless, what I have read has caused the scales to fall from eyes. My previous admiration for James Dean has all but disappeared - buried in the multifarious layers of his debauchery and recklessness. I felt the same after reading the brilliant The Secret Life Of Oscar Wilde. Both are cautionary tales against idolising anyone; idols invariably have feet of clay (or something crumblier in the case of James Dean).

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kaela

    I have mixed feelings toward this book, I felt that it was average and didn't exceed to visually describe many things part of James deans life. It was somewhat of a drag to keep reading because I felt I wasn't getting the full picture I deserved. This had nothing to do with James dean himself but the authors way of writing. I have mixed feelings toward this book, I felt that it was average and didn't exceed to visually describe many things part of James deans life. It was somewhat of a drag to keep reading because I felt I wasn't getting the full picture I deserved. This had nothing to do with James dean himself but the authors way of writing.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra Richland

    Put it this way: I am a huge Dean fan, and I obviously know what happened to him on September 30, 1955. Even so, I cried at the end of this book. Yes,I actually cried. Joe Hyams gave such an excellent, intimate portrayal of Jimmy throughout the book, bad traits and all, that I felt like I lost a friend. Excellent book. This one and The Mutant King are my favorite Dean biographies.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Topher Taylor

    I waited 6 weeks for this book to arrive from a bookshop in a small town in the USA and I couldn't put this book down. Buy it if you can find it - I wish I could in-read it so I could read it all again! I waited 6 weeks for this book to arrive from a bookshop in a small town in the USA and I couldn't put this book down. Buy it if you can find it - I wish I could in-read it so I could read it all again!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    James Dean was a very complex individual. I have never met anyone the way he was described in this book. This is a great read for anyone interested in the many facets of his personality and the "inside scoop" about Hollywood in the 50's. People were not as innocent as you would think! James Dean was a very complex individual. I have never met anyone the way he was described in this book. This is a great read for anyone interested in the many facets of his personality and the "inside scoop" about Hollywood in the 50's. People were not as innocent as you would think!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Michaëla

    Amazing biography about one of the most remarkable actors of the 20th century.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    One of my dear friends starting reading this and he's quite into it. I think that I may just take a whirl at it as well. One of my dear friends starting reading this and he's quite into it. I think that I may just take a whirl at it as well.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    I like getting to know the other side of James Dean not just his screen persona

  20. 5 out of 5

    Pippa Herden

    LOVEEE JAMES DEAN !!!!!!!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Anderson

  22. 5 out of 5

    April

  23. 4 out of 5

    Joe

  24. 5 out of 5

    Craig

  25. 4 out of 5

    Raffi

  26. 4 out of 5

    Valeri Nichols

  27. 4 out of 5

    Romie

  28. 4 out of 5

    Julie

  29. 4 out of 5

    Skullmarie

  30. 5 out of 5

    Alex Geringer

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