A novel of moguls, movies, and mayhem, with major characters Louise Brooks, Clara Bow, Charlie Chaplin, William Randolph Hearst--and of course Hollywood itself....
|Title||:||Crazy Rhythm: A Novel of Old Hollywood|
|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||233 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Crazy Rhythm: A Novel of Old Hollywood Reviews
Years ago, when I was a youngster, Scholastic Books used to take fact-based information of events and put it into story form to spike Reader interest. In many ways, this book reminded me of one of those.From what I've read of the main people in this story, the events described are surprisingly accurate. The writer invents narrative, descriptions, and dialogue to tie them together. Consequently, sequences fly past at a very rapid pace. This means that we don't have the opportunity to explore the emotional responses in almost every case before we are whirled into another segment. I'll say this for the approach. I wasn't bored.The approach comes problematic with significant events such as the killing of Thomas H. Ince aboard William Hearst's yacht. The death hasn't been fully explained, although this book comes down squarely on the famous "murder by mistaken identity" theory. However, whether this is right or wrong, none of the characters are shown to have much of a feeling one way or the other about it. It makes it seem like a Cliff's Notes version of history.Not everything you'll read has been verified. Some of it is gossip that has been passed on so often it is generally believed to be true by many people. On the other hand, the writer doesn't take the bait of propagating the famous college football story or Clara Bow's possible tryst with Bela Lugosi ... neither of which is likely to have happened.Also, I could not understand why so few films were identified by name. Obscure references are made such as the film Louise Brooks starred in with W.C. Fields ... or the one in which she dressed up like a boy. Having a film fan background, I knew them, but it seemed odd that they weren't specifically identified.Having said all that, if you know very little about Louise Brooks, Charlie Chaplin, Clara Bow, William Randolph Hearst and Marion Davies, this is a surprisingly good primer for overview information. You will get a sense of the period, and it will (hopefully) encourage you to seek out more extensive resources regarding these fascinating people.
I feel like this novel had its facts straight, but I'm not sure about the spin that was put onto the feelings, reactions, and motives of the characters. There was a LOT of sex- mostly oral sex- which I found odd, to be honest. Not that there's anything wrong with it, but perhaps this author has a fetish for it above and beyond literary purpose? I find it difficult to believe that all these silent-era actresses - Louise Brooks, Clara Bow, Marion Davies, Paulette Goddard, et al - just floated in and out of Hollywood with little more ambition than they floated in and out of bedrooms. I could be mistaken, but. overall, the people presented in this novel seemed two-dimensional to me. Even a particular contrivance the author uses repeatedly loses its punch. "I am Louise, and I'm eager to please," is one example of it; the rhyming bit changes, but it's always the same simple self-aware statement. And this might be fine, if Louise was the only one to do it, but then Clara does it, Charlie Chaplin does it, even Willie Hearst does it. Not likely.
I picked up this book because I write a series of novels set in Hollywood at the same time as this book. On the plus side, I thought the characters – Clara Bow, Louise Brooks, William Randolph Hearst, Charlie Chaplin – were well drawn and through dialogue and description, Vian deftly drew us a realistic picture of life in the 20s and 30s. On the down side, none of the action led to anything. There was no climax, no high point—it was all a bit episodic. But as far as episodic storytelling goes, fans of this era aren’t likely to be disappointed.
This book was wonderful and I hated when it ended. The author understood his subjects and brought them to life in an engaging read that's mostly about Clara Bow and Louise Brookes. I 'borrowed' it through the kindle lending library (a feature for Prime Amazon members) and loved it so much I bought it once I finished reading it.If you have a passion for Old Hollywood stories that are well written and bring actors from yesteryear back to life in a convincing way, you'll enjoy this book.
I can't believe how amazing this book was and quite frankly I'm amazed at how often I think back to this book, one month after I read it. Sealed me on kindle unlimited.