In 1955, Gates, at the time secretary to a Hollywood agent, married Rock Hudson, the perennially popular actor whose AIDS-related death made recent headlines. In this memoir of their three-year marriage, she, with the help of celebrity biographer Thomas (Astair et al.), describes a conflicted man, one given to childish behavior, sudden depression, miserliness and physical abuse of his wife. Hudson's bisexuality was a late discovery for her in the marriage, and she relates her efforts to counter the nefarious influence of a homosexual Hollywood agent. Gates, who stresses that she was never a full partner in the marriage, gives herself high marks for not being vindictive in divorce. A scattering of anecdotes about the couple's filmdom friendsBrando, Bogart, Grace Kellyenlivens this confessional reminiscence of a misalliance. Photos not seen by PW. First serial to the National Enquirer; Literary Guild alternate. (May)
Gates tells the story of her brief marriage to Rock Hudson in the 1950s. She met Hudson while she was secretary to his agent, Henry Willson, whose scheming she later blamed for the breakup of the marriage. Gates dated Hudson for several months and lived with him for two months before his sudden proposal. Willson brought off the wedding within a week; it was later purported to have been arranged quickly to stave off a major expose of Hudson's homosexuality. Caught up in the life of a star's wife, including a normal, if not entirely satisfactory, sex life, Gates was unaware of her husband's homosexuality until she separated from him two years later because of his increasing moodiness and tantrums. This slight but believable story is not a necessary purchase for most libraries. Literary Guild alternate.. Marcia L. Perry, Berkshire Athenaeum, Pittsfield, Mass.