Possessed Cover


The Life of Joan Crawford

By Donald Spoto

It Books, Paperback, 9780061856013, 336pp.

Publication Date: June 28, 2011


The definitive biography of a remarkable woman and true legend of film

Joan Crawford was one of the most incandescent film stars of all time, yet she may have also been one of the most misunderstood. In this brilliantly researched, thoughtful, and intimate biography, bestselling author Donald Spoto goes beyond the popular caricaturethe abusive, unstable mother portrayed in her adopted daughter Christina Crawfords memoir, Mommie Dearestto give us a three-dimensional portrait of the real woman behind the actress, her dazzling career, and her extraordinary life and times.

Based on new archival information and exclusive interviews, Possessed traces Crawfords fifty years of memorable performances in such film classics as Rain, The Women, Mildred Pierce, and Sudden Fear, which are as startling and vivid today as when they were first released. Spoto goes behind the myths to examine the rise and fall of the studio system; Crawfords four marriages; her passionate, thirty-year on-and-off affair with Clark Gable; her friendships and rivalries with other stars; the truth behind the scathing stories in her daughters memoir; and more.

About the Author
Donald Spoto has written two dozen bestselling biographies of film and theater stars among them Grace Kelly, Alfred Hitchcock, Tennessee Williams, Ingrid Bergman, and Marilyn Monroe. Born in Westchester County, near New York City, he now lives in Denmark.