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Fiction: Hollywood

Fiction: Hollywood

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I Lost My Girlish Laughter, Allen, Jane (pseud.)
1 Allen, Jane (pseud.) I Lost My Girlish Laughter
New York Random House 1938 3rd printing Hardcover Very Good+ 
(no dust jacket) [nice copy, spine a little turned, extremely light dampstaining on top edge (with occasional very slight bleeding onto top edges of some pages); paste-on illustrated label on front cover slightly rubbed/yellowed but still attractive, paste-on spine label faded and nearly unreadable]. A classic of Hollywood quasi-fiction, written pseudonymously by Jane Shore and Silvia Schulman; the latter had been personal secretary to famed producer David O. Selznick, but had left his employment to marry screenwriter Ring Lardner Jr. (they were later divorced). Selznick, according to bibliographer Anthony Slide, was " outraged" by the book (in which he is thinly disguised as "Sidney Brand"), was convinced that Lardner himself had written it (which Lardner has always denied), and even went so far as to attempt (unsuccessfully) to prevent Orson Welles from presenting a radio adaptation. The book, writes Mr. Slide, "is a delight. The author captures an innocent's enthusiasm at working in Hollywood, and the day-to-day activities of a studio are well documented from the point of view of a secretary who must not only deal with her producer-boss's business life but also with his personal one." The narrative is rather cleverly composed of letters to friends, inter- office memos, telegrams, trade paper items, and entries "From a Secretary' s Private Journal." Quite a decent copy of an increasingly hard-to-find book; a "Hollywood 100" title, included in "100 Books on Hollywood & the Movies." 
Price: 85.00 USD
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Palace of Light, Atlas, Jacoba
2 Atlas, Jacoba Palace of Light
New York E. P. Dutton 1989 0-525-24738-6 / 9780525247388 First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good+ dj Illustrated by (dj collage) Victoria Kann 
[light shelfwear, one bent page corner; jacket a little rubbed but no tears or chips]. A love story set against the backdrop of labor unrest and the early days of the motion picture industry in Los Angeles. [Although this goes unmentioned in the jacket copy, the author did her college dissertation on the history of Hollywood labor unions, and is also the daughter of screenwriter Leopold Atlas, whose notable credits included THE STORY OF G.I. JOE (for which he received an Oscar nomination), and who was blacklisted for his political affiliations until he bowed to pressure from HUAC and became a "friendly witness" not long before his death in 1954. In other words, the vivid background of her novel is based on both in-depth research and personal knowledge.] 
Price: 10.00 USD
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The Lovomaniacs, Barrett, Rona
3 Barrett, Rona The Lovomaniacs
Los Angeles Nash Publishing 1972 0-8402-1253-4 / 9780840212535 First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good dj 
[solid clean book, light age-toning to page edges, minor shelfwear; jacket has various tiny nicks along top edge, 1/4" triangular chip at base of spine, spine slightly color-shifted]. The only novel by "Miss Rona," at the time one of Hollywood's best-known columnists/commentators. Film historian/ bibliographer Anthony Slide writes in his bibliography, "The Hollywood Novel: A Critical Guide to Over 1200 Works": "In view of the author's background, one would be tempted to dismiss the book as a typical trashy Hollywood novel. One would be very, very wrong. The Lovomaniacs is an extraordinarily complex novel, overlaid with astrological lore, and narrated alternately by each of the major characters. ... It has to be read!" So is it REALLY one of the great overlooked Hollywood novels? There's only one way to find out, friends. 
Price: 20.00 USD
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The Bette Davis Murder Case, Baxt, George
4 Baxt, George The Bette Davis Murder Case
New York St. Martin's Press 1994 0-312-10939-3 / 9780312109394 First Edition Hardcover Fine in Near Fine dj Illustrated by (dj art and design) Honi Werner 
[very nice copy, tight and clean, no discernible wear; jacket has a tiny tear and slight scrunching at top of spine, otherwise in almost perfect condition]. In another of his movie-star-starring period murder mysteries, Baxt puts Bette Davis in London, renting the museum-like mansion of a famous archaeologist "for a few months of relaxation while her Hollywood lawyers renegotiate her contract, but instead of peace and quiet, she gets embroiled in murder." And how does this sort of thing happen, you wonder? It's because her next-door neighbor happens to be Agatha Christie, of course. So naturally the "grand dame of mystery and the sultry starlet of the silver screen" team up to solve the case. (This takes place in the early 1930s, by the way, so "starlet" to describe Davis is quite accurate.) 
Price: 15.00 USD
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The Greta Garbo Murder Case [*SIGNED*], Baxt, George
5 Baxt, George The Greta Garbo Murder Case [*SIGNED*]
New York St. Martin's Press 1992 0-312-06988-X / 9780312069889 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Very Good+ dj Illustrated by (dj art and design) Honi Werner Signed by Author
[light shelfwear, small light pink smudge on half-title page; jacket shows light wear at extremities, small tear and slight associated creasing at top rear foldover, tiny scuffed spot near top center of front panel]. SIGNED by the author (signature only) on the title page. Another in Baxt's long-running series of period murder mysteries centered around famous movie people in an ingeniously-imagined alternative Hollywood -- in this instance, Greta Garbo (instead of terminating her screen career after the embarrassment of TWO-FACED WOMAN, as she did in real life) accepts the lead in a modern-day anti-Nazi version of JOAN OF ARC, which leads to her involvement in "an international imbroglio full of actors acting and spies, spies acting as actors, and some actors simply acting -- a drama in which she must ultimately play a leading role." Signed by Author 
Price: 30.00 USD
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The New Confessions [*SIGNED*], Boyd, William
6 Boyd, William The New Confessions [*SIGNED*]
New York William Morrow and Company (c.1988) 0-688-07761-7 / 9780688077617 3rd printing Hardcover Very Good in Very Good dj Illustrated by (dj design) Fred Marcellino Signed by Author
[moderately shelfworn, slight split to board at bottom front corner, hinges a tad bit sprung (although binding is completely solid), very faint soiling to page edges; jacket rubbed and a bit wrinkled]. INSCRIBED ("To ____ / all my best wishes") and SIGNED by the author on the title page. The epic story of "one of the great self-appointed (and failed) geniuses of the twentieth century," Scottish-born filmmaker John James Todd. Signed by Author 
Price: 15.00 USD
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What the Movies Made Me Do [*SIGNED*], Braudy, Susan
7 Braudy, Susan What the Movies Made Me Do [*SIGNED*]
New York Alfred A. Knopf 1985 0-394-53246-5 / 9780394532462 First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ in Near Fine dj Illustrated by (dj design & illustration) Pamela Noftsinger Signed by Author
[remainder mark bottom edge, some wear to edges/corners of book; jacket has traces of wear along top edge, very slight fading to spine]. SIGNED on the ffep by the author, with a generic, non-personalized inscription ("Enjoy the book! I hope you laugh!"). Signed by Author 
Price: 25.00 USD
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The Shoestring Symphony, Broekman, David
8 Broekman, David The Shoestring Symphony
New York Simon and Schuster 1948 First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good- dj Illustrated by (dj design) F.E. Banbery 
(price-clipped) [solid clean copy, bumped at bottom corners but no other significant wear, attractive (if generic) bookplate with previous owner's signature on ffep; jacket shows wear at edges and corners, a few small tears, shallow chipping at spine ends, tiny piece missing at bottom right-hand corner of front panel, considerable fading to spine (where the title is almost unreadable)]. Interesting Hollywood not-quite-novel (although the front panel of the jacket calls it "a novel," I have in the past seen a contemporary disclaimer issued by the publisher, averring that it was in fact "a fictionalized biography, a biographie fantastique." (So in other words, like many Hollywood autobiographies of that era, it has only a glancing relationship to reality.) At any rate, it's an interesting book, a semi-comic work that has relatively little to do with the film biz per se -- however, the protagonist/narrator (named "David Broekman," incidentally) does spend an inordinate amount of time circulating among various Hollywood hangers-on and has-beens, all the while pursuing an increasingly cockeyed and desperate scheme to fulfill his dream of conducting his own symphony at the Hollywood Bowl. The author himself was an (unemployed) Hollywood conductor and composer during the Depression. 
Price: 40.00 USD
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Keep It Real [*SIGNED*], Bryan, Bill
9 Bryan, Bill Keep It Real [*SIGNED*]
Madison WI Bleak House Books (c.2007) 1932557377 / 978-1-932557-37-4 First Edition Hardcover Fine in Near Fine dj Illustrated by (dj design) Kevin Glidden Signed by Author
[nice tight clean copy, with no discernible wear; jacket shows faint surface handling wear, short diagonal crease in rear flap]. SIGNED and DATED by the author on the title page. Satirical novel about an investigative reporter-turned-reality-show producer who uses the show to investigate the disappearance of a gangsta rapper's girlfriend. The author's debut novel. Signed by Author 
Price: 25.00 USD
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The Manipulator, Cilento, Diane
10 Cilento, Diane The Manipulator
New York Charles Scribner's Sons (c.1967) NO 1st Edition ("A") Hardcover Near Fine in Very Good+ dj Illustrated by (dj design) Sean Connery 
[nice clean copy, spine slightly turned, bottom corners lightly bumped; jacket sunned at spine, otherwise just a bit of wear at extremities]. The first of two novels written by the New Guinea-born actress perhaps best known (I guess) for having been married to noted book jacket designer Sean Connery from 1962 to 1973. Set at "an international film festival in Acapulco," and revolving around "a group of film stars and executives." Write what you know, they say. 
Price: 7.00 USD
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The Face on the Cutting Room Floor [*SIGNED*], Cutler, Stan
11 Cutler, Stan The Face on the Cutting Room Floor [*SIGNED*]
New York Dutton 1991 0-525-93381-6 / 9780525933816 First Edition Hardcover Fine in Near Fine dj Illustrated by (dj design) Neil Stuart Signed by Author
[no discernable wear to book itself; jacket shows a trace of surface rubbing, very minor wear along bottom edge of front panel]. INSCRIBED to veteran TV writer Mel Tolkin, and SIGNED by the author on the half-title page. The second adventure of private-eyes-to-the-stars Rayford Goodman and Mark Bradley, who narrate this tale of a Tinseltown murder in alternating chapters. Signed by Author 
Price: 20.00 USD
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Children of Hollywood, Demarest, Phyllis Gordon
12 Demarest, Phyllis Gordon Children of Hollywood
New York The Macaulay Company 1929 NO 2nd printing Hardcover Good 
(no dust jacket) [moderate wear to extremities, age-toning to edges of text block, one-time owner's small address label at top corner of front pastedown, faint staining to front cover, two-inch tear in bottom of pages 147/148]. Romance that takes place in and around Hollywood rather than a "Hollywood novel" per se -- but although bibliographer Anthony Slide more or less dismisses it as having "little film-related material," there's still a certain amount of local-color interest, as the characters move about Southern California -- going to the races and the casinos in Tia Juana, attending a Hollywood premiere, enduring industry shop-talk at a Beverly Hills party, dining at Henry's and the Cafe Montmartre, etc. The author was a step-daughter of actor William Demarest, according to some sources. 
Price: 40.00 USD
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Flashback, Dooley, Roger
13 Dooley, Roger Flashback
Garden City NY Doubleday & Co. /Crime Club 1969 First Edition Hardcover Very Good in Very Good dj 
[moderate wear at extremities, spine turned; jacket shows some wear corners, small tears with minor paper loss at top of spine, a little wrinkling at base of spine]. Mystery novel concerning a staff writer for a film magazine who gets involved in a murder case while investigating an old-time Hollywood scandal. 
Price: 20.00 USD
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Laid Out, Eliason, Joyce
14 Eliason, Joyce Laid Out
New York Harper & Row (c.1976 0-06-011119-4 / 9780060111199 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Very Good+ dj 
[clean and tight, with a little shelfwear at the bottom; traces of wear at corners of DJ, a bit of wrinkling along the top edge]. After a young film director named Wally Black dies of a heart attack in an airport phone booth, five women who were variously involved with him tell their stories. The book "smoothly [catches] the rhythm of a contemporary Hollywood life that is off limits to most of us. Here, that bizarre and kinky life is literally laid out, its ambiance captured with an amazing intensity and immediacy." The author's second novel. 
Price: 9.00 USD
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Pandaemonium, Epstein, Leslie
15 Epstein, Leslie Pandaemonium
New York St. Martin's Press 1997 0-312-15622-7 / 9780312156220 First Edition Hardcover Fine in Near Fine dj Illustrated by (dj art) Max Beckmann 
[nice tight clean book, with no discernible wear, NO remainder or other marks; jacket shows faint wear at extremities, slight surface-peel damage at top rear corner]. "The definitive novel of Hollywood in its most glamorous era, a work that examines the very roots of film itself, and their hold upon the dark, underground forces of instinct and imagination. Narrated by the ever-wise, yet sexually tormented Peter Lorre, this book assembles a huge cast of Hollywood types -- moguls, agents, directors, stars and starlets, writers, gossip columnists and mere hangers-on -- who converge on Pandaemonium, a Nevada ghost town, on the eve of World War II. There, they all fall under the spell of a great European film director named Rudolph Von Beckmann, whose secret plan is to turn a routine B western into an extraordinary film of 'Antigone,' and so warn the world of the dictator who would destroy it." The author comes by his Hollywood chops honestly, being a son/nephew of Julius J. and Philip G. Epstein, the renowned twin-brother screenwriters of "Casablanca" and numerous other classics. 
Price: 15.00 USD
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The 21" Screen, Fadiman, Edwin Jr.
16 Fadiman, Edwin Jr. The 21" Screen
Garden City NY Doubleday & Company, Inc. 1958 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Very Good dj 
[small star stamped on ffep, else a flawless copy; DJ soiled, chipped/dog-eared at spine extremities, spine a bit discolored]. Novel about a big-time TV star, the enormously popular host of a daytime network talk/variety show, who had once been an ambitious young writer. Flashback chapters show how he went wrong. 
Price: 20.00 USD
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Shivering in the Sun, Fadiman, William
17 Fadiman, William Shivering in the Sun
Los Angeles Wilshire House (c.1988) 1-55713-043-4 / 9781557130433 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Near Fine dj Illustrated by (dj painting) Edward Hopper 
[nice copy, with just a slight bump to the bottom rear corner; faint wear to jacket at a couple of corners]. "...a moral fable set in a slyly portrayed amoral world, peopled with the archetypes beloved in Hollywood. This wicket romp through the machinations of ambition is set in a skewed Los Angeles circa 1963. Judd Haber, the agent's agent, a far-from-perfect Everyman, is estranged from his past (his name used to be Jacob Haber), from his wife and his family. His adopted son is a porn star, his daughter is seeing a man he's never met, and his wife is drifting into a tepid affair with her university extension professor." The author was a longtime story editor at MGM and other studios, and served at various times as assistant to Dore Schary and Howard Hughes. 
Price: 20.00 USD
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Come Back Dead; a Scott Elliott Mystery, Faherty, Terence
18 Faherty, Terence Come Back Dead; a Scott Elliott Mystery
New York Simon and Schuster (c.1997) 0-684-83084-1 / 9780684830841 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Fine dj 
[covers bowed slightly outward, top front corner bumped]. A mystery novel set in 1950's Hollywood, in which "Carson Drury" (read Orson Welles) attempts to buy back the rights to his failed second film, " The Imperial Albertsons," in order to re-shoot the original ending and restore his tarnished reputation. 
Price: 10.00 USD
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The Big Dream [*SIGNED*], Fisher, Steve
19 Fisher, Steve The Big Dream [*SIGNED*]
Garden City NY Doubleday & Company, Inc. 1970 First Edition Hardcover Very Good in Good+ dj Illustrated by (dj) William Edwards Signed by Author
[good tight copy, internally clean but with some irregular faded spots on front cover as a result of once-dampened dust jacket; jacket is mildly edgeworn, water-stained at upper spine and upper left-hand corner of front panel (although because of the jacket design it's relatively unobtrusive), plus there's a triangular chip at the top front hinge (affecting both the front panel and top of spine)]. INSCRIBED and SIGNED by the author on the ffep. This hard-boiled veteran writer returns yet again to the Hollywood Novel, a genre he mined repeatedly (often striking a rich vein of cliche) throughout his long career. No one can say he didn't know the territory: in addition to more than a dozen novels (under both his own name and, early on, as "Stephen Gould"), he also had numerous screenwriting credits from the 1940s through the 1970s. This one is "an explosive [aren't they all?] novel" about the "pressure cooker of the new Hollywood." With a little sex in it, as they say. Signed by Author 
Price: 75.00 USD
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Equal to Princes: A Hollywood Novel, Gregory, Mary Lawrence
20 Gregory, Mary Lawrence Equal to Princes: A Hollywood Novel
Garden City NY Doubleday & Co. 1986 0-385-19802-7 / 9780385198028 First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good+ dj Illustrated by (dj design) Paul Bacon 
[spine turned, but otherwise a nice clean copy with minimal wear; jacket has a couple of tiny tears at bottom corners]. A novel about the three Diamond brothers -- Sheldon, Mel, and David -- who came of age during Hollywood's Golden Era, and occupy positions of prestige and influence within the business, as an executive, a fast-living lawyer, and a passionately committed writer, respectively. The author (aka Mollie Gregory) is also a noted screenwriter and documentary filmmaker. 
Price: 15.00 USD
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