Audrey Hepburn, An Elegant Spirit by Sean Hepburn Ferrer

an elegant spirit

3/5 stars

I went into this book thinking it was going to be something entirely different to what it was. Knowing the book was written by Audrey Hepburn’s eldest son, Sean, I was expecting this book to be a touching, intimate biography of his mother. Instead, what this book basically is is a photo album which includes random narrative tidbits from the author.

Imagine yourself sitting beside Sean Hepburn Ferrer, a Hepburn family photo album splayed out on the table in front of you, and him casually telling stories about his mother whilst flipping the pages. That’s really all this book is, so if you’re looking for a biography of Audrey Hepburn – one of the most beloved classic film stars ever – you’re going to be just as disappointed as I was.

Don’t get me wrong, the photos included within the book were beautiful and I loved looking through them, but the trouble is, I didn’t learn anything and that’s one of the things I hope for and expect when reading classic film non-fiction. Aside from the last two chapters which I found incredibly emotional and touching, I have to say (and please don’t shoot me) that the rest of the book was sorta just like … meh.

Will I be keeping my copy of the book? No. I’ve already put it in my car, ready for it to be donated to my local library. If you’re a die-hard fan of Audrey Hepburn’s – which I suspect a lot of you are – I’m sure you’ll love this book and appreciate it for what it is. But if you’re just a casual fan of her’s like I am, you’re better off just borrowing this book from the library rather than buying it to add to your bookshelves.

This book review was posted for Raquel’s #ClassicFilmReading challenge.

3 thoughts on “Audrey Hepburn, An Elegant Spirit by Sean Hepburn Ferrer

  1. I like Audrey Hepburn although I can’t say I love all that many of her films. However, I have started reading a new book that came out just this year which explains her upbringing. I’m only into her childhood but DUTCH GIRL: AUDREY HEPBURN AND WORLD WAR II by Robert Matzen is quite fascinating. I think this book would be more of what you were hoping for.


    1. Robert Matzen is a fantastic writer! A few years ago, I read his book about Carole Lombard and absolutely loved it. I’ve actually already purchased Dutch Girl on my Kindle, but haven’t gotten ’round to starting it yet. I’m happy to hear you’re enjoying it so far! Thanks for commenting.

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