The Last Hero: A Biography of Gary Cooper

The Last Hero: A Biography of Gary Cooper

by Larry Swindell

Paperback(Reprint ed.)

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Gary Cooper was the foremost American screen hero—a major film actor for over thirty years, beginning with the silents. His stardom eclipsed even such successors as Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy, Humphrey Bogart, and John Wayne.

This first major biography of the hero of High Noon captures the enigmatic essence of filmland's favorite cowboy. The contrast of his public reticence and private sophistication made "Coop" a paradox not even the press could unravel. It surprised many that this cowpoke could dazzle moviegoers with his blue eyes and quiet intensity. Nevertheless, he epitomized both innocence and rakishness in a combination that was irresistible both on and off the screen. It made him one of the wealthiest and most sought-after stars in the Hollywood firmament.

In his startling transformation from Montana cowboy to international playboy, Cooper attracted such vampish lovers as Clara Bow and Lupe Velez, and such savant acquaintances as Hemingway and Picasso. Yet he was the most humble and sincere cosmopolitan who ever raced through Beverly Hills in a Dusenberg. His life was like one of the movies in which he invariably "played himself"—warmly and winningly.

The Last Hero is an in-depth portrait of one of America's best-loved "good guys," a close-up look at Gary Cooper, both man and myth.

Readers interested in related titles from Larry Swindell will also want to see: Body and Soul (ISBN: 1626546150), Charles Boyer (ISBN: 162654610X), Screwball (ISBN: 1626546258), Spencer Tracy; a biography (ISBN: 1626548072 ).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781626545649
Publisher: Echo Point Books & Media, LLC
Publication date: 12/16/2016
Edition description: Reprint ed.
Pages: 394
Sales rank: 512,571
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.81(d)

About the Author

Larry Nolan Swindell is formatively a Californian and UCLA graduate but is a native Texan who, in 2014, was inducted into the Texas Literary Hall of Fame. His five published biographies, all focused on leading stars of Hollywood's Golden Age, are deeply rooted in the history of American movies, his consuming passion.
Now retired, logged 45 years as a newspaper journalist and editor. He was literary editor and critic-at-large for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram from 1980 to 2000. Concurrent with his journalistic odyssey, he was an instructor in literature and composition at five universities, including a 20-year stretch at Texas Christian University.
In 1974 he founded the "Bookshelf" column, which was syndicated nationally by The New York Times and the Knight-Ridder newspaper chain for a decade. He also reviewed Broadway productions for dailies throughout New York's Westchester County.
Larry is father to three daughters and two sons, and he has eleven grandchildren. He was married to Broadway actress Eleanor Eby until her death in 1983. He is now living California with his second wife (and childhood sweetheart), Patricia Volder.

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