What's It All About Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of What's It All About

Michael Caine writes about his life, starting with his early childhood in WWII London and ending sometime around 1992 (too bad he does not have a “sequel” telling us what happened after that!).
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Michael Caine has been through a lot in his life; perhaps that is one of his secrets of being such a good actor. He has known poverty, danger, serious illness. The pages describing his time in the army might make you smile at some of the ridiculous things he had to do, but I'm sure he didn't feel like smiling about it back then. That's why when they were given a choice of either serving additional year or going to war to Korea, he and his friends chose Korea without any hesitation: they ‘d rather be killed in war than spend another year in the army. In Korea, Michael Caine had caught a rare form of malaria. It manifested itself shortly after he had returned home, and no one knew how to treat this unusual type. Michael was released from the hospital looking like a skeleton and knowing that he wouldn't live to be forty. Fortunately, one doctor took the risk of combining two medications used to treat two other, known types of malaria – something that had never been done before. Michael was cured.

I was fascinated to read about the working-class boy, and later young man, who wanted to become an actor and had not given up on his dream – despite years of struggle and what seemed like getting nowhere. As a fan of his, I am glad that he persevered. I also liked reading about the making of some of the movies Michael Caine was in, and the story of him meeting his second wife, the beautiful Shakira. Their move to America and life there was a very interesting part as well.
The review of this Book prepared by Laura Southcombe

Chapter Analysis of What's It All About

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Plot & Themes

job/profession:    -   actor/actress Job/profession/poverty story    -   Yes Story of entertainer?    -   Movie Drama Actor

Subject of Biography

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   actor/actress/producer Ethnicity    -   White Nationality    -   British


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   4 () United States    -   Yes Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK

Writing Style

Book makes you feel?    -   encouraged    -   like laughing How much dialogue in bio?    -   significantly more descript than dialog How much of bio focuses on most famous period of life?    -   26-50% of book

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