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Below you’ll find a list of books in which Luise Rainer features, however briefly. I have included any books that make a reference to Luise that I feel will be of interest to readers of this website; some of these may be only a page or even a paragraph. I have not included the film encyclopaedia, biographical dictionaries or other ‘list’ books, unless they provide significant information which cannot be found elsewhere. You will also find a list of all novels which provided source material for Luise’s films, and plays in which she has appeared.
There is currently no biography, or autobiography, of Luise Rainer. Some years ago Luise began writing her own memoirs under the provisional title of Unfinished Symphony, but, understandably in such a full life, gave up when she realised the mammoth task ahead. In a 1999 interview with the New York Times she said, ”I have written 230 pages and you know how old I am? Twenty-two!… at that pace, the book would be as long as War and Peace.” The book resurfaced again in 2010 when Luise conducted a series of interviews with Oberon Books, but, as yet, no publication date has been announced despite the title now appearing on some websites such as Amazon. Her original manuscripts and notebooks along with hundreds of items of correspondence, diaries, legal paperwork, photographs, scrapbooks, personal effects and more are now housed at the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center in Boston, USA. The collection includes thousands of items and includes items that cover the whole of Luise’s life. There is much correspondence between Luise and both of her husbands, Clifford Odets and Robert Knittel, but the collection also includes letters to and from Anais Nin, Samuel Barber, Federico Fellini, Alfred Steiglitz, Pearl S. Buck, Jean Renoir, Lotte Lenya, Laurence Olivier, Henry Kissinger and many, many more.
This bibliography includes title, author, publisher, year of first publication and any notes regarding the content relating to Luise Rainer. Most of these books, even those which are now out-of-print can be found for sale with a web search. As always, any omissions or corrections should be sent to me by email.
No Pickle, No Performance: An Irreverent Theatrical Excursion
by Harold J. Kennedy
First publication: Doubleday, 1977
Theatrical anecdotes a-plenty, including a firsthand account of working with Luise Rainer on the 1951 production of Joan of Lorraine in Los Angeles.
| A-sitting on a gate
by Ben Travers
First publication: W. H. Allen, 1978
Autobiography of the English playwright, screenwriter and novelist. Includes an anecdote of his first meeting with Luise at a party in 1976 and his poem to her, Ballade upon receipt of a treasured letter.