5.0 out of 5 stars

Fascinating Memoir Written With Great Candor.

June 23, 2015

 

By: Jeremy Kinser "guywoodhouse"

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"Through graceful, vivid prose, Dale Engelson Sessa recounts her own compelling journey, which she begins as a sheltered, privileged young girl, who seems to have everything but soon finds herself an unfulfilled wife and mother. Through a series of relationships, documented here with great candor, as well as sometimes unimaginably horrific events, she ultimately finds personal contentment after emerging as a very successful businesswoman in her own right. At times Engelson Sessa reminded me of one of the female protagonists of Mad Men as they're confounded by the roles society expected them to play in a bygone era. She's a bit of Betty, always searching for something just beyond her reach, but with the gusto and business acumen of Peggy and Joan. Although she is a very complex heroine, her message here is very clear: Other people can’t make you happy until you’re satisfied with yourself.

To her credit, the author writes unflinchingly of experimenting with drugs, her own sexual awakening and, movingly, about caring for a friend dying of AIDS. In some ways And All the Queen’s Men is a companion piece to the late Paul Monette’s excellent Becoming a Man, but seasoned with a savory dash of Erica Jong’s Fear of Flying. I imagine that most women and a good number of men who came of age during the '60s and '70s will find Engelson Sessa's story not only riveting but completely relatable. It's well worth reading."

5.0 out of 5 stars

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this memoir!

June 7, 2014

 

By Kristen

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"I just turned the last page of Dale Sessa's book and I found her story quite compelling. Her story is written in a very honest, raw and courageous manner. It is a story of one woman's journey through life, from childhood and into maturity. I appreciate the author's honesty and I found myself relating to many of her experiences. Her relationships seem real and her characters are fully developed and colorful. I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this read."

5.0 out of 5 stars

Amazing !!!!!!,

February 3, 2014

 

By: Steve

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"Dale Sessa revealed a life that most of us would hide in a closet or sweep under a rug with hopes of never being discovered , Yet she allowed us to see into her deep dark world that grabs you the moment you first start reading her Amazing memoir. Her courage to share her life will in my opinion be a wonderful benefit to all those who can relate to her story. I ordered several books to give out as Christmas presents and to friends who I thought would enjoy reading it. Everyone Loved It !! I suggest giving this book as a gift to your friends as well. What a wonderful way to touch the hearts of so many. Hail to the Queen !!!! S. Hardwick"

5.0 out of 5 stars

And All The Queen's Men

December 30, 2013

 

By Teresa H. Bernhardt

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Kindle Edition)

 

"I like to thank the author Dale Engelson -Sessa for open her heart to her audience. Dale's book is a real page turner. Her incredible interesting life's journey had me laughing out loud, even chuckle from time to time. I have to admit more than once I shed a tear. I had goose bumps on many occasions. To me that's a sign of a great book. Dale's book moved me. Most importantly it gives you hope that as humans we can overcome any obstacles the universe puts in front of us. After all it all comes down to love. We must learn how to love and be kind to ourselves before we can love others fully. And.....we are never to old to fall in love. A beautifully written book for any gender."

5.0 out of 5 stars

A Wild Ride!

 

By CG in Montecito

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"Riveting from the first page, you will be transported into a life that is oftentimes joyful, extremely sensual, but ultimately heartbreaking. The eventual resurrection of that life is nothing less than glorious. Flawless and powerful, Dale Engelson Sessa's debut book is raw, yet poignant all at the same time. It will bring you to tears more than once.

Told with a directness and candor that's sometimes jarring, the author's tumultuous life journey has been laid bare. There are tempestuous marriages, sultry love affairs, successful businesses, and heart aching losses all rolled into one fascinating life.

There's not a woman reading 'And All the Queen's Men; A Memoir', who will not see herself buried somewhere in these exquisitely written chapters. This is a book you will want to read many times over. I loved it."

5.0 out of 5 stars

Daring, Honest, and Insightful. A MUST READ.

 

By E. Kimball

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"AND ALL THE QUEEN'S MEN is an incredible book. This is coming from a somewhat cynical introvert who reads mostly body/mind/health related books and manuals. Amazingly enough, I picked up AND ALL THE QUEEN'S MEN, looking for a good story- a little bit of fluff to even out all the serious matter in my brain. This book doesn't deliver "fluff" at all. Instead, the author, Dale Sessa invites the reader into the most intimate, thought provoking narrative. Sessa, opens herself up in the most vulnerable, unguarded, and exposed way. It's such a personal and beautifully written book. It's refreshing to read a memoir that exemplifies the evolution of a strong and remarkable woman."

5.0 out of 5 stars

Sesa's life reads like a sexier, better written version of my own.

 

By A.J. Sarner

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"Once in a while I read a book that resonates so deeply that the characters continue to follow me around for days after I've finished it. "All The Queen's Men is that kind of book, and so much more. With deep, humorous insight and hard won hindsight, Dale Sesa shares her remarkeable life with a frankly shocking intimacy and honesty you rarely find in a novel, let alone a memoir. Sesa's life parallels my own life in that we've rollercoastered through the smae decades, on the journey through difficult childhoods, early maritial mistakes, professional challenges, always searchng to find the right job, the right partner, the right life. She's writes beautifully about herself, warts and all. It's the life of a singular woman so in many ways it's the life of all women. Read it -you won't be able to put it down."

5.0 out of 5 stars

WOW

 

By Paul Kendall (UK)

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"All the Queen's men couldn't put humpty back together again. After a billion mile journey across the universe Dale discovered all things are possible but not all thing are advantageous. This is a story of sex drugs and losing your glasses and finding them again, a stormy documentary of the fall and the rise and the fall and the rise again of Dale Sessa. (she now lives in Beverly Hills) After finishing this book, I remember taking off my glasses and saying WOW.

In a nutshell the book documents our Dale's early life from a small town in South Carolina where her father had a fairly successful business This is 1950's America a testament to the quality of writing is the interesting account of just how primitive life was back in 1950's America . In particular the life of a wonderful character Carrie who worked in Dale's family home. The story then takes us to a point where we find Dale sat behind a desk at a massive advertising agency in New York her own business.

All roads lead back to Dale's father who is portrayed as overpowering controlling and vain, we read he has a string of extra marital affairs not that exceptional in the 1950's. But his behaviour would have an overshadowing affect on Dale's own life later on.

Ok I was thinking lets accept he was a mix of over protective father and pimp slash hustler. In his defence in the 1950's may be that's what it took to put food on the table. How else could he buy the tickets to take Dale and the rest of the family to the Beverly Hills Hilton and Las Vegas ? Then we read Dale's father took Dale to California to marry her off to some rich husband. Note ; the mother remains all 1950's housewife silent while all this is going on. At this point it all gets dark and sinister. Errm Dale's father made his daughters dress up and dance for "his friends" OK it's seriously creepy now.

Nothing could prepare you dear reader for what happens next. All psychosis is rooted in the dark theatre of the family home. (R.D Laing) . Action in turn leads to reaction a trauma in childhood is a gift that just keeps on giving.

In parts the book is very funny in others it is desperately sad and bleak. You may think I am exaggerating I promise you I am not. You look at the photograph of the slender gentle woman on the book cover and there is no way you can reconcile the Dale in the photo and the Dale in the book.. You will fall of your chair when you learn Dale is on the board of Cedars -Sinai medical centre oh yes our Dale is a survivor.

Dale's first encounter with her new husband's massive penis which was being projected as huge shadow on the wall had me laughing. Dale is fearlessly descriptive about her sex life, drugs, deceit, deceptions, flaws and her double life, gambling, her love of horses, her fabulous homes, selling her fabulous homes, the ups downs all in one life wow... After reading about the fateful shadow the wall, It reminded me of a message sent to the King of Babylon at Belshazzar's palace the writing on the wall "mene mene tekel pharsan".

If mortals live a life like Dale "Mene Tekel Pharsan" the things we do are weighed and judged and we come to tragic end. Like Al Pachino at the end of the movie Scarface. One sniff of cocaine and our Dale saw "the world is yours" written across the skyline of New York. But it is also written "he who loves a lot forgives a lot" and the big director has granted Dale a stay of execution pending better and further particulars. I am mostly referring to her defence which is set out in this book.

Dale looked horror in the face (literally) in 1995, the angel of death had his sword at her throat, yet she was allowed to stand up and walk away. Each time you think you have read Dale's story there is another twist.

I love reading memoirs This book is exceptional because its so open and so candid and so honest. Dale got away from stressful life in business the drugs, the life of moral turpitude to a life of relative sanity. This is an amazing story ...it's all in the book."

This review was of the printed edition.

Paul Kendall (UK)

5.0 out of 5 stars

All The Queens Men...a must read!

 

By Sharleen Cooper Cohen

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"Sessa’s honesty and brutal truth demands equal measure from the reader. As we identify with her, we are propelled to search our own psyches, as most of us would not venture into the unknown with such a zest for life. Sessa sometimes leaps without caution and with an abandon bordering on recklessness, manages to make AND ALL THE QUEEN’S MEN all the more exciting. While most of us wish we could liven up our lives, we stay within our comfort zone and read other people's adventures. Sessa dared to leap, and landed safely. And as we read the obstacles, the struggles, the painful and joyous moments she recounts, we are so grateful that she did."

5.0 out of 5 stars

LONG LIVE THE QUEEN

 

By Rusty

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"And All The Queens Men is truly a page turner. You would think you were reading a really torrid novel, but this is a true and honest tell-all memoir of one very courageous woman. Ms. Sessa takes us on a mesmerizing journey from her life growing up in the South with her domineering father, to the many romantic and tragic relationships that set the tone for what she must do to empower herself and finally find her Prince Charming.

This memoir is also an incredible look at how one woman forged to step outside of her homemaker role as wife and mother to become a successful business women in Hollywood. This is a story many of us can relate to.... so get ready to take a roller coaster ride filled with tears, tragedy and joy."

5.0 out of 5 stars

A BOOK YOU DON'T WANT TO MISS.

 

By Avid Reader "AR" (USA)

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Kindle Edition)

 

"And All The Queens Men is a book you will find yourself reading in one sitting. As an avid reader, memoir is my favorite genre and this one does not disappoint. The author takes you on her very personal journey with the men in her life that define her in the present and contribute to who she becomes in her future. A very intimate, sexual look at how the men in our lives influence who we are as women. Women will relate with the author as she moves from relationships, looking for that perfect pairing we all dream about as young girls. Men will be fascinated with the sex and the insight into how they are often perceived by women.


This book is a journey about a woman defining herself in life and love. Get a comfy chair and settle in. You will not want to put this book down."

5.0 out of 5 stars

AND ALL THE QUEEN'S MEN

 

By Kenneth a Baer (miami, fl United States)

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"AND ALL THE QUEEN'S MEN, a tell-all memoir that exposes the author's provocative secrets and tempestuous lifestyle, is so compelling that by husband # 1, you're hooked!

Ms. Sessa's expressive and beautiful prose describes her family, her romances and her desire to be in control. Although her dominating father is no longer in her life, she continues to rebel against his authoritarian style by seeking out dangerous liaisons and flirting with the popular contraband of the times. Her failed marriages further fuel her determination to control her destiny, and we are taken on a journey with OMG moments, shocking details and sweet pleasures.


What makes this story so powerful is the author's courage and honesty in revealing - in detail - her indiscretions, her motivations and what she does in order to find lasting love. It is a vivid portrait of how a young woman navigates through intimate and casual relationships until she finds her Prince Charming.

Best wishes to the King and Queen, and may they live happily ever after!!!"

5.0 out of 5 stars

Couldn't put it down !!!

 

By J. Paul "J D Paul" (Los Angeles)

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"Hard to believe that a Memoir would be a page turner .. but the exquisite writing and wonderfully descriptive narratives of "And All The Queen's Men" totally engrossed me. It's a truthful journey of a woman discovering herself through the many relationships in her life. This brave and honest introspection was so relatable to me (and many women's experiences). Difficult to believe that this is a debut book, as this writer seems so well seasoned ... looking forward to reading more from this author."

5.0 out of 5 stars

And All The Queen's Men

 

By Mardi from Redlands, CA

 

This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)

 

"This memoir is a page turning mystery about a life lived to the fullest. The mystery is in the unfolding one small moment at a time. The words of the author are beautifully woven together like a perfect tapestry put lovingly upon a wall for both self-examination and painfully, bravely for all to see. Readers will connect with the writer being presented with pleasantries and circumstances not-so pleasant with each day, chapter and man along the way. I personally enjoyed witnessing the development of self-love that we all hopefully (and should) experience with time and life experiences, the learned lessons that leave us better than they found us. Readers will have that 'at last' joyful relief, cry and be left exhilarated with the truly lovely gift of life found in this book."

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