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Publisher's Summary

Newly discharged from the Marines after World War II, Scotty Bowers arrived in Hollywood in 1946. Young, charismatic, and strikingly handsome, he quickly caught the eye of many of the town's stars and starlets. He began sleeping with some himself, and connecting others with his coterie of young, attractive, and sexually free-spirited friends. His own lovers included Edith Piaf, Spencer Tracy, Vivien Leigh, Cary Grant, and the abdicated King of England Edward VIII, and he arranged tricks or otherwise crossed paths with Tennessee Williams, Charles Laughton, Vincent Price, Katharine Hepburn, Rita Hayworth, Errol Flynn, Gloria Swanson, Noël Coward, Mae West, James Dean, Rock Hudson and J. Edgar Hoover, to name but a few.

Full Service is not only a fascinating chronicle of Hollywood's sexual underground, but also exposes the hypocrisy of the major studios, who used actors to propagate a myth of a conformist, sexually innocent America, knowing full well that their stars' personal lives differed dramatically from this family-friendly mold. As revelation-filled as Hollywood Babylon, Full Service provides a lost chapter in the history of the sexual revolution and is a testament to a man who provided sex, support, and affection to countless people.

©2012 Scotty Bowers and Lionel Friedberg (P)2012 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"A startling memoir." (Gore Vidal)

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Story

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

My ears!

Any additional comments?

This book is poorly written, sexually crude, with not a single sympathetic character. That said, I listened to it twice!

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Candid, Compelling and Creepy

If only ten percent of Bowers' stories are true it's still a fascinating and frank look at an era in Hollywood when certain activities and attitudes were sequestered and secreted from the public at large. Bowers names names and reveals the alleged sexual activities of many of our most famous celebrities. He seems to have known everyone and been a touchstone (no pun intended) for hooking people up. Just the vast number of vignettes causes one to ponder his verisimilitude. But I'm not casting aspersions because so many of his recollections have a ring of truth and seem plausible. And I'd think Gore Vidal would not endorse this book flippantly. But who knows? As always, Johnny Heller's reading is perfect.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Didn't disappoint.

I am glad to have listened to the whole book and not just picked up the paperback. Listening to his story unfold was much more enjoyable. Better, because, I wasn't able to keep flipping through pages to get to the next gossipy part.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Truth or fiction?

This was a fun book to listen to, but after so much name dropping of famous, but dead movie stars who supposedly had sex with men, I began to think a lot of it might be fiction since none of the movie stars could defend themselves. I find it hard to believe Walter Pidgeon or Spencer Tracy were really gay. And the time line is wrong on several stories - I've read countless times that Cary Grant & Randolph Scott did, indeed live together - but it was in the mid 30's - well before Scotty was old enough to be doing what he claimed - he placed them living together a decade later, but it is well documented Cary was married to the rich Miss Hutton at that time. Maybe the author exaggerated some to catch attention to himself. It works as a time capsule of showing how deviant Hollywood once was.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Deserves to be a camp classic!

Have you ever thought “I wish Great Expectations had more explicit sex in it?” Well have I got the book for you! Make no mistake, this book is trash, but it’s incredibly entertaining trash. Mr. Bowers is essentially Forrest Gump with narcissistic personality disorder. He thinks EXTREMELY highly of himself and never encounters anyone here who isn’t immediately enchanted by his charm. I personally didn’t believe a word of his stories, but who cares? This is best approached as pure camp. I reached a point where I knew another IMDb list or serendipitous sexual encounter was coming and cackle with laughter. He’ll spin a wistful, nostalgic yarn and without warning shift over into an incredibly graphic description of a sexual situation. If you appreciate the movie Showgirls, you’ll probably find much to love here.
Points deducted for the parts without celebrities. Scotty’s life isn’t interesting on its own and I found myself bored by his interactions with non-famous people; also points deducted for the section on Charles Laughton which actually made me gag from disgust- it’s needlessly gross. Still though, if you know what you’re getting yourself into, it’s a lot of fun.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Awful

Voyeuristic and vulgar. There is no reason for this story to be told. It is just some old man getting himself off one more time.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great book about the Golden Era of Hollywood

I loved this book and enjoyed hearing about the dirty secrets of the stars and many others of the 40s thru the 60s. Very well narrated and kept me glued to my phone the whole story.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

I question the some validity of this book

I like the narrator he reminds me of Casey Case Him. The book full of sex of all sorts, and it had James Lear feel. If you looking for a fun book to listen this is the one. The big issue I had with this book was the pedophilia. He acted like it was no big deal.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Very Funny

Full of every gay actor - ever. And list after list of each celebrity's filmology.

Enjoy!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

OMG!

What made the experience of listening to Full Service the most enjoyable?

I cannot say enjoyable, interesting yes it was.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I guess I could talk about the language, the story line, but to be fair this was Scotty Bowers life not mine. He lived one hella life!

What about Johnny Heller’s performance did you like?

Given the subject and the language used, he did an excellent job.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No! Way to much information to take in, in one setting.

Any additional comments?

I find it most difficult to believe everything Mr. Bowers writes about, interesting yes, but little unbelievable.