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'Tis Herself

'Tis Herself

A Memoir

In an acting career of more than seventy years, Hollywood legend Maureen O'Hara came to be known as "the queen of Technicolor" for her fiery red hair and piercing green eyes. She had a reputation as a fiercely independent thinker and champion of causes, particularly those of her beloved homeland, Ireland. In 'Tis Herself, O'Hara recounts her extraordinary life and proves to be just as strong, sharp, and captivating as any character she played on-screen.
O'Hara was brought to Hollywood as a teenager in 1939 by the great Charles Laughton, to whom she was under contract, to costar with him in the classic film The Hunchback of Notre Dame. She has appeared in many other classics, including How Green Was My Valley, Rio Grande, The Quiet Man, and Miracle on 34th Street. She recalls intimate memories of working with the actors and directors of Hollywood's Golden Age, including Laughton, Alfred Hitchcock, Tyrone Power, James Stewart, Henry Fonda, and John Candy. With characteristic frankness, she describes her tense relationship with the mercurial director John Ford, with whom she made five films, and her close lifelong friendship with her frequent costar John Wayne. Successful in her career, O'Hara was less lucky in love until she met aviation pioneer Brigadier General Charles F. Blair, the great love of her life, who died in a mysterious plane crash ten years after their marriage.
Candid and revealing, 'Tis Herself is an autobiography as witty and spirited as its author.
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  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 336 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743269162 | 
  • March 2005
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One: The Gypsy and the Two-Headed Beast

My whole life was foretold to me. I peered out the crack of our door and found an old Romany Gypsy standing hunched on our porch in the hot afternoon sun. She smiled down at me and took my five-year-old hands in hers, then turned my palms upward and read my fortune. "You will leave Ireland one day and become a very famous woman known all around the world. You are going to make a fortune and be very, very rich." Then she held my hands in the light and cackled, "But it will all slip through your fingers one day." I pulled my hands away and answered with certainty, "I'll never leave... see more

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