Believe it or not, America's fascination with celebrity culture was thriving well before the days of TMZ, Perez Hilton, Charlie Sheen's breakdown, and allegations against Woody Allen. And the stars of yesteryear? They weren't always the saints that we make them out to be. Part biography, part cultural history, the stories contained in this book cover the stuff that films are made of: love, sex, drugs, illegitimate children, illicit affairs, and botched cover-ups. Based on Anne Helen Petersen's popular column on the Hairpin, Scandals of Classic Hollywood is sensationalism made smart.
©2014 Anne Helen Petersen (P)2014 Tantor
Well, this is an odd question because no two books are alike. However, for this particular genre - Hollywood expose, this is an extraordinally well written book.
One of the most memorable moments from the book was the Clark Gable/Carole Lombard narrative. It was surprisingly touching and, of course, very tragic.
It was a bit frantic at times but not unpleasant overall. The narration style seemed to fit the time period and subject matter covered.
Facts about how prevailing social norms in the country influenced what could make or break a Hollywood star and why. This was fascinating and made me contextualize it in today's celeb obsessed culture.
This book greatly and pleasantly surprised me with its intellectual, provocative examination of stardom, fame and infamy when it comes to Hollywood and public consumption. I expected a gauzy, bawdy romp through the scandals of yesteryear and got something much better instead. There are scandals aplenty but they are offered up in a framework of the psychosocial, religious, political and historical context of the country in real time. The struggle of America to come to terms with sex, gender, race and many other defining issues informs the narratives found within the book at every turn. What a fascinating read as a result! My only complaint is the fact that the author clearly cherry picked her scandals and often chose to treat some incidents with kid gloves. Still, I highly recommend this book.
A beautifully written book with wonderful narration by Romy Nordlinger who added so much with her sultry but emotional voice. I was very moved listening to it and can't wait to share it with various friends who know nothing about some of these tragic and brilliant heroes and heroines. I didn't want it to end!
This book was done with tabloid research. I have read better. It told me nothing I did not already know. How can I get my money and time back.
If you're under 40 and just getting into The Golden Age of Hollywood and haven't been reading these exposés since the 1970s (like me,) you will find nuggets of "scandal" that will hold your interest. Mostly, it didn't have a lot of new stuff but it is well written and narrated.
I accept that after a certain point, no new information will be surfacing about James Dean, Judy Garland and even especially about the stars from the 20s... but hope springs eternal that some old diary will be found that will enhance these actors private life portfolios and tell me a tale that I haven't run across before...
But, as I mentioned, if you're not already saturated in Hollywood Lore, you will like this book.
I very much enjoyed this book and the way it was written. Although most of what it spoke about I already knew, The way the author was able to bring everything into a historical and cultural context of the time really made me think of certain events in different ways than I had before. It wasn't just the headlines of the gossip mags, it helps you understand what was going on in the mind of America at the time these events happened.
Maybe a litte shorter.
No,but she's very good.
After just listening ng to Dropped Names, I couldn't help compare the two. I preferred Dropped Names to this because it was told by someone who actually lived the experience. Overall though, a very good listen. I would give it three and a half stars if possible.
The same old stories anyone even slightly interested in these topics would already know.
This story was very good..I learned so much about classic Hollywood I didn't know..A must read for those who love Hollywood of yesteryear
I loved Jean Harlow's story..I have always been fan
Her voice was just enough to it didn't overtake the story but was still interesting to listen to
What happens in Hollywood stays in Hollywood
Way too dramatic - I found her interpretation very annoying. It's like she was trying to make up for the lack of substance by adding it in the narration.
Hard to say - I think the whole book was a waste of my time
This book is a joke. There seemed to be no real research done by the author. All the information seemed to come from the fan magazines of the day. I did not hear where there was one interview conducted that had any actual insight to the supposed "scandals" in the book. I could have written this book by "googling" these stars on the internet. In fact, I probably could have written it better - for sure I couldn't do worse.
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