November 13th, 2016

Ndebele birdhouse



The Life of Leonard Nimoy

by Richard Michelson, illustrated by Edel Rodriguez;  Alfred A. Knopf Random House 2016

This truly fascinating picture book showcases the life and achievements of Leonard Nimoy, from the boy who loved to sing and act, to the man who became one of the world’s most iconic and beloved figures.

The son of Russian immigrants who felt like aliens in America, Leonard moved to Hollywood to follow his dream of becoming an actor. “May you live till one hundred and twenty, and have a long and healthy life like Moses,” his mother told him. “Learn to play the accordion,” his father advised. “Actors starve, but at least musicians can eke out a living.”

Leonard constantly reached for the stars and was determined to catch them. He pedaled vacuum cleaners door-to-door, drove a taxi, and worked as a movie theater usher – all so that he could study acting and go to auditions.

But Leonard Nimoy was not just Mr. Spock. He developed a fascination for photography as a kid, using the family bathroom as his darkroom. It was like magic – each emerging image revealed its subject’s soul. In 1971, he enrolled at UCLA to study photography and his photographs have been exhibited in major museums. He also recorded music, wrote poetry, plays and autobiographies. Throughout his lifetime, he spoke for political causes and social justice.

“. . . the gifts he has given to all of us – his acting, his photography, his poetry, his presence – will surely live long and prosper.” Richard Michelson