Rat Pack Confidential by Shawn Levy

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 2 Critic Reviews



For the first time, the full story of what happened when Frank Sinatra brought his best pals to party in a land called Vegas.

January 1960. Las Vegas is at its smooth, cool peak. The Strip is a jet-age theme park, and the greatest singer in the history of American popular music summons a group of friends there to make a movie.

One is an insouciant singer of Italian songs, ex-partner to the most popular film comedian of the day. One is a short, black, Jewish, one-eyed, singing, dancing wonder. One is an upper-crust British pretty boy turned degenerate B-movie actor, brother-in-law to an ascendant politician. And one is a stiff-shouldered comic with the quintessential Borscht Belt emcee's knack for needling one-liners.

The architectonically sleek marquee of the Sands Hotel announces their presence simply by listing their names:


Around them an entire cast gathers: actors, comics, singers, songwriters, gangsters, politicians, and women, as well as thousands of starstruck everyday folks who fork over pocketfuls of money for the privilege of basking in their presence. They call themselves The Clan. But to an awed world, they are known as The Rat Pack.

They had it all. Fame. Gorgeous women. A fabulous playground of a city and all the money in the world. The backing of fearsome crime lords and the blessing of the President of the United States. But the dark side--over the thin line between pleasure and debauchery, between swinging self-confidence and brutal arrogance--took its toll. In four years, their great ride was over, and showbiz was never the same.

Acclaimed Jerry Lewis biographer Shawn Levy has written a dazzling portrait of a time when neon brightness cast sordid shadows. It was Frank's World, and we just lived in it.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Shawn Levy

See more books from this Author
Shawn Levy is the film critic for The Oregonian and the author of The Last Playboy, Ready, Steady, Go!, Rat Pack Confidential, and King of Comedy. He lives in Portland, Oregon, with his wife and three children.
Published September 17, 1999 by Broadway Books. 368 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Education & Reference, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography, Political & Social Sciences, Sports & Outdoors. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Rat Pack Confidential

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

We are treated to a snappily written retelling of Sinatra’s rise from working-class Hoboken, NJ, fueled by his mother’s high-octane shoving, to his success as teen idol and band singer, his catastrophic fall from grace in the early ’50s and no less meteoric return with the film From Here to Etern...

| Read Full Review of Rat Pack Confidential


and it was not of interest only to the young, as popular music is today."Though admittedly not an overly pithy remark, especially by Epstein's witty standards, its truth came back to me because of a similar assessment in Levy's concluding summation about the Rat Pack, "They were the last redoubt ...

Oct 16 2014 | Read Full Review of Rat Pack Confidential

Reader Rating for Rat Pack Confidential

An aggregated and normalized score based on 100 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review