Something of Me by Paul O’Neill

I had a difficult time deciding between 3 stars and 4 for this book at Goodreads. Perhaps 3.5? At any rate, I enjoyed reading this book more than I thought I would, which is always a nice surprise. I had never heard of Paul O’Neill before receiving this review copy, but after finishing the book, Mr. O’Neill comes across as a genuinely likeable man, something well attested to by thoughts from Edward Roberts (who wrote the foreword), his writing assistant Myra Colborne and finally, his niece Rene to whom he bequeathed his unfinished memoirs from which this book has resulted.
Paul, who was born in St.John’s but called Cape de Verde “down home” was an actor in various touring companies in the U.S. after WWII, had some bit parts in the movies, met a lot of famous and soon-to-be famous actors and actresses, then went to London England to appear in plays and some films there. Having to return home to care for his ailing father, Paul stayed in Newfoundland and got radio work with the CBC there and never returned to acting.
Something of Me (201, Creative Publishers) is a type of time capsule of life on the road in the 40’s and 50’s in the U.S. and what the trials and tribulations of a young actor were like in those days when stage acting was viewed as superior to film acting and folks loved going to live theater just as much as going to a movie.
Bottom line, Something of Me is the interesting, well written recollections of an unassuming and likeable man.
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James M. Fisher is the owner and editor-in-chief of The Miramichi Reader. The Miramichi Reader (TMR) —Canada’s best-regarded source for the finest in new literary releases— highlights noteworthy books and authors across Canada from coast to coast to coast (est. 2015). James works and resides in Miramichi, New Brunswick with his wife and their tabby cat.