same gusto, humor, and dazzling description that light up his fiction, Sid
Fleischman produced a quartet of books profiling figures whose talents set the
world abuzz—including this one of Charlie Chaplin.
was, that little tramp twitching a postage stamp of a mustache, politely
lifting his bowler hat, and leaning on a bamboo cane with the confidence of a
gentleman. A slapstick comedian, he blazed forth as the brightest movie star in
the Hollywood heavens. Everyone knew Charlie Chaplin.
by his alcoholic father, neglected by a mother fighting insanity, Charlie
Chaplin had escaped the London slums of his tragic childhood and gone on to take
Hollywood like a conquistador with a Cockney accent. With his gift for
pantomime in films that had not yet acquired vocal cords, he was soon rubbing
elbows with royalty and dining on gold plates in his own Beverly Hills mansion.
He was the most famous man on earth—and he was regarded as the funniest.
Chaplin rose from the slums to the heights only to be driven from the country
that had brought him worldwide fame. Never were tragedy and comedy so
inextricably mixed as in his too-outlandish-for-fiction life, told with Sid
Fleischman’s trademark wit and verve.
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