Book review: Elizabeth Taylor’s Kiss by David Wood

David Wood, actor turned children’s playwright, brings his second memoir into print following his exploration of the experience of being one of the main trio in Filming If …

In Elizabeth Taylor’s Kiss, he takes the approach of tying in various screen assignments with major names in the cast, creating a list of encounters both profound and casual.

As a perennial “friend of the leading man”, Wood was solidly cast in a range of television plays and cinema features. In this absorbing account of his brushes with Hollywood and the stars of Tinseltown, there is a disarming honesty and sense of fun.

A really good read bringing back personalities of the past (James Mason, Huddersfield’s finest brooding leading man, for one), Elizabeth Taylor’s Kiss is absorbing reading for pop culture fans and cineastes.

Cover of Elizabeth Taylor's Kiss by David Wood

There’s a wonderful chapter about Wood’s time working with the interminable Shelley Winters – you may recall she was asked to audition once for a part and presented her Oscar in lieu of her resume. She sounds quite a gal.

For fans of failed musicals, you will enjoy the story of the failed Lloyd Webber musical Jeeves and its star, 1960s young blood David Hemmings, and a smashing supporting cast including Betty Marsden from Round the Horne.

This book will interest and delight anyone interested in the smoke and mirrors of showbusiness. Wood is an affable and knowledgeable guide to both the public and personal sides of the life, and this is a very readable piece of memoir within a fairly short page count.

Elizabeth Taylor’s Kiss is available now from all major book retailers and is published by the Book Publishing Guild.