Playland

Playland

John Gregory Dunne

John Gregory Dunne

A critically acclaimed best-seller set in the glamorous, gangster-dominated Hollywood of the 1940s tells the story of Blue Tyler, a child star who disappears from Hollywood and becomes a bag lady in New York City.From Publishers WeeklyFitful, often contradictory memories of a former child film star's decade of fame and the cloaked brutality that surrounded her in the film industry give shape to Dunne's latest, enthralling novel, a tragic tale of behind-the-scenes Hollywood from the '30s to the present. Skillfully interweaving numerous small narratives, Dunne ( True Confessions ) explores the steep price of stardom, the potentially destructive power of storytelling (including filmmaking) and the illusory nature of truth. Screenwriter Jack Broderick, scion of a late Hollywood billionaire, has recently lost his wife in an automobile accident and is halfheartedly researching a movie when he finds Blue Tyler living in a trailer park outside Detroit. More than 40 years after leaving Hollywood--she was blacklisted as a Communist and grieving over the death of her flamboyant gangster lover--an impoverished Blue, though mildly delusional, still retains much of her glamorous charisma. Determined to solve the puzzle of Blue's contradictory versions of her life and the real reason for her disappearance, Jack pores over records and interviews other survivors of the era--each of whom, in turn, tells a slightly different account colored by self-interest. Dunne's ear for vernacular is as keen as ever, producing gritty, on-pitch, often funny dialogue. His sharp eye and his gift for the precise, almost journalistic detail evokes Hollywood in successive eras, and his characters are as vivid and memorable as any he has ever created. Major ad/promo; author tour. Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. From School Library JournalYA?A terrific read. Screen writer Jack Broderick finds himself in several awkward situations even before he winds up sharing a late-night cab ride with Blue Tyler. Tyler, a former child star 40 years removed from Hollywood, is now Autumn Breeze Trailer Park's answer to Norma Desmond. Sensing a story with a big payoff, Broderick tries to answer the questions surrounding her long hiatus. Young adults will be swept away as Jack Broderick tries to piece together the wild story of Blue Tyler. Dunne's vibrant characters and true-to-life dialogue make Playland impossible to put down.?Philip Clark, R.E. Lee High School, Springfield, VACopyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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True Confessions

True Confessions

John Gregory Dunne

John Gregory Dunne

In 1940s Los Angeles, an unidentified murder victim is found bisected in a shadowy lot. A catchy nickname is given her in jest—"The Virgin Tramp"—and suddenly a "nice little homicide that would have drifted off the front pages in a couple of days" becomes a storm center. Two brothers, Tom and Des Spellacy, are at the heart of this powerful novel of Irish-Catholic life in Southern California just after World War II. Played in the film version by Robert Duvall and Robert De Niro respectively, Tom is a homicide detective and Des is a priest on the rise within the Church. The murder investigation provides the background against which are played the ever changing loyalties of the two brothers. Theirs is a world of favors and fixes, power and promises, inhabited by priests and pimps, cops and contractors, boxers and jockeys and lesbian fight promoters and lawyers who know how to put the fix in. A fast-paced and often hilarious classic of contemporary fiction, True Confessions is...
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Nothing Lost

Nothing Lost

John Gregory Dunne

John Gregory Dunne

A grisly racial murder in what news commentators insist on calling "the heartland." A feeding frenzy of mass media and seamy politics. An illicit love affair with the potential to wreck lives. In his grandly inventive last novel, John Gregory Dunne orchestrated these elements into a symphony of American violence, chicanery, and sadness.In the aftermath of Edgar Parlance's killing, the small prairie town of Regent becomes a destination for everyone from a sociopathic teenaged supermodel to an enigmatic attorney with secret familial links to the worlds of Hollywood and organized crime. Out of their manifold convergences, their jockeying for power, publicity or love, Nothing Lost creates a drama of magnificent scope and acidity.From the Trade Paperback edition.
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