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Bergan provides a glimpse into the life of a Hollywood legend, by charting both her career, which spanned seven decades, and her off-screen relationships with many of her leading men. When Katharine Hepburn arrived in Hollywood in 1932,studio executives were confounded by a rare beauty who displayed both animperturbable sense of humor and an intelligent sensibility. Nobody on screencould be so funny and so moving in making a fool of herself, or so touching inreclaiming her dignity. According to George Cukor, her friend and the directorof eight of her films, She always challenged the audience, [and] that wasn'tthe fashion in those days. Much likeHepburn herself, her career followed no conventional pattern. Her on-screenpersonae ranged from the headstrong girl of her early appearances to thevaguely authoritative spinster of her later films; her performances won her astring of accolades, from her first Oscar for Morning Glory in 1933 to her fourth for On Golden Pond in 1981-with which she became the first (and to dateonly) winner of four Oscars for Best Actress, from a record twelve nominations. Hepburn was always her own woman, insisting on andretaining the respect of all who worked with her. She refused to give in to thestudio's publicity demands, avoiding interviews and always wearing pants offthe set. With her fierce, no-nonsense beauty-to which the 150 sumptuousphotographs in this book amply testify-her strong-minded outspokenness, and hercontrolled yet sparkling performances, she will always be one of cinema's mostseductive illustrations of the advantages of independence.