NY: St. Martin's Press, . Illustrated. First Edition, first printing. Signed presentation from Thompson on the front endpaper: “8/25/82. To George, My dearest and longest friend. Without you there would be no La Cantina. Love you, Verita Thompson."
Verita Bouvaire-Thompson [1918–2011] was an American actress turned hairdresser who reputedly had a 14-year affair with actor Humphrey Bogart. After graduating from high school and coming second in the 1935 Miss Arizona Pageant, she was discovered by a Hollywood talent scout and signed a contract with Republic Pictures.. During the filming of her first movie, she fell off a horse and broke her arm. Back in Mexico she met a hairdresser and wig maker with whom she formed a partnership. Upon returning to Hollywood her patrons were Charles Boyer, Gary Cooper, Ray Milland, George Raft and, eventually, Bogart. According to Thompson, her association with Bogart started in 1942, when he was still married to his third wife, Mayo Methot, in a union noted for its stormy, sometimes physically violent arguments. In 1949 she became his personal hairdresser and worked on all but four of Bogart's last 18 pictures. In a 2011 Bogart biography, the relationship is mentioned and labeled as unverified, though under the premise that Bogart had quietly begun to seek the company of other women, including his ex-wife Helen Menken and his personal hairdresser, "a spirited little brunette named Verita Thompson." The author then quotes Thompson as saying that, "'Often he'd stay the night usually leaving for the studio around five in the morning." Others confirm that a relationship began in 1942. While the fact of the extramarital affair is downplayed, the fact that she was his hairdresser is well established. After Bogart’s death, Thompson opened Verita's La Cantina, a Mexican restaurant on Sunset Boulevard. She later moved to Natchez, Mississippi, in the late 1980s, before opening a piano bar in New Orleans called Bogie and Me. 8vo., cloth & boards in dust jacket; 240 pages. Item #57296
Very Good (covers nice; contents clean & tight with little scattered foxing top edge); very minor wear d/j.