Dean and Me: (A Love Story)

Abridged / Go to Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Jerry Lewis, James Kaplan

Narrated By: Gregory Jbara

Publisher: Random House (Audio)

Date: October 2005

Duration: 5 hours 39 minutes

Summary:

They were the unlikeliest of pairs-a handsome crooner and a skinny monkey, an Italian from Steubenville, Ohio, and a Jew from Newark, N.J.. Before they teamed up, Dean Martin seemed destined for a mediocre career as a nightclub singer, and Jerry Lewis was dressing up as Carmen Miranda and miming records on stage. But the moment they got together, something clicked-something miraculous-and audiences saw it at once.
Before long, they were as big as Elvis or the Beatles would be after them, creating hysteria wherever they went and grabbing an unprecedented hold over every entertainment outlet of the era: radio, television, movies, stage shows, and nightclubs. Martin and Lewis were a national craze, an American institution. The millions (and the women) flowed in, seemingly without end-and then, on July 24, 1956, ten years from the day when the two men joined forces, it all ended.
After that traumatic day, the two wouldn't speak again for twenty years. And while both went on to forge triumphant individual careers-Martin as a movie and television star, recording artist, and nightclub luminary (and charter member of the Rat Pack); Lewis as the groundbreaking writer, producer, director, and star of a series of hugely successful movie comedies-their parting left a hole in the national psyche, as well as in each man's heart.
In a memoir by turns moving, tragic, and hilarious, Jerry Lewis recounts with crystal clarity every step of a fifty-year friendship, from the springtime, 1945 afternoon when the two vibrant young performers destined to conquer the world together met on Broadway and Fifty-fourth Street, to their tragic final encounter in the 1990s, when Lewis and his wife ran into Dean Martin, a broken and haunted old man.
In Dean & Me, Jerry Lewis makes a convincing case for Dean Martin as one of the great-and most underrated-comic talents of our era. But what comes across most powerfully in this definitive memoir is the depth of love Lewis felt, and still feels, for his partner, and which his partner felt for him: truly a love to last for all time.

Genres:

  • BJS

    I enjoyed the book. Jerry Lewis has an out-sized personality - but I think many in show business do. He also has a lot of insecurities just below the surface & that drove his initial relationship with Dean Martin. Whether you believe his claims of good deeds or take them with a grain of salt, there is a fair amount of painful honesty here, and a great deal of unabashed admiration for his partner. The descriptions of Dean Martin seem right on target, poignant, funny & loving. We were lucky to have them. Great job by the narrator as well!

  • Kay Swiger

    This was a wonderful, entertaining, and enlightening book which was well read and thoroughly enjoyed.

  • Kim S

    If you can get past Jerry's ego, which is almost immpossible although having worked with Jerry in the past, I wasn't surprised by it, it's an interesting story. And conveniently, almost anyone who could back up Jerry's great deeds, is dead. I always loved Dean and Jerry as performers so it was great to know their background. The narrator Gregory Jbarra does a good job with the vocal impressions.

  • Paul Farber

    If you're not a fan of Jerry Lewis, not to worry-this book will only confirm your good taste. This is a self-indulgent ode to Jerry Lewis under the guise of honoring his late partner, Dean Martin. The only interesting parts involve their early days, from their beginning in Atlantic City to their glory days as TV and film stars. Jerry might have guilt feelings about the fate of his partner but his words have an empty ring.

  • Anonymous

    If you've enjoyed the great work of Dean and Jerry, this book is worth listening to. Very well written, interesting story and well-read. I would recommend it for anyone who are fans of these two greats.