Sunday, August 3, 2014

Eight books that will transport you to Old Hollywood

Jennifer Niven's books include American Blonde, book four in the Velva Jean series. Niven lives in Los Angeles (where her film Velva Jean Learns to Drive won an Emmy Award).

For the Huffington Post she tagged eight books that will transport you to Old Hollywood, including:
I, Fatty by Jerry Stahl

For those who don't know, Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle was one of the biggest (no pun intended) stars of the 1920s. As Booklist observes, his was a "rags-to-riches-to-rags story." That story gets a fictional retelling here, with Fatty as narrator, although the author sticks to the facts of the comedian's life -- the heroin addiction, the wild parties, and, most famously, the party that led to accusations of rape and murder, which resulted in the most sensational trial of the decade. Arbuckle was most likely innocent, but it ruined him and his career. I, Fatty takes us through the highs and lows of Hollywood and one man's journey there, and is at once poignant and bawdy, harrowing and heartbreaking.
Read about the other entries on the list.

Also see Stefan Kanfer's five best books on remarkable Hollywood lives and Jane Ciabattari's five best list of novels on Hollywood.

--Marshal Zeringue