What better place to escape to during this stressful time than to the place where dreams are made — Hollywood.
If you’re getting tired of bingeing one TV show after another, take a different look at this world. We’ve rounded up some books dealing with Hollywood, movie stars and the movie industry.
‘Picture’ by Lillian Ross
New Yorker writer Ross gives a behind-the-scenes look at the production of John Huston’s 1951 film adaptation of Stephen Crane’s “The Red Badge of Courage.”
‘City of Nets: A Portrait of Hollywood in the 1940s’ by Otto Friedrich
Otto Friedrich takes the reader on a journey back to the days when Louis B. Mayer ruled Hollywood and the studios made such now legendary films as “All About Eve,” “The Maltese Falcon” and “Double Indemnity.”
‘The Little Sister’ by Raymond Chandler
The legendary writer sends his equally legendary character, Philip Marlowe, to Hollywood as he takes on a missing persons case. Once there, the mystery deepens with blackmail plots, murder, movie stars and gangsters.
‘The Hollywood Canteen: Where the Greatest Generation Danced with the Most Beautiful Girls in the World’ by Lisa Mitchell
From 1942 to 1945, the Hollywood Canteen was a magical place where American servicemen about to deploy to the Pacific Theater would gather for the greats of Hollywood to entertain them. If they were lucky, a sailor or soldier would get to dance with a starlet.
‘The Castle on Sunset’ by Shawn Levy
Levy takes us to the famed Chateau Marmont along the Sunset Strip. This home away from home for movie and rock stars has been the location of many scandalous events in Hollywood history.
‘American Lightning: Terror, Mystery, the Birth of Hollywood & the Crime of the Century’ by Howard Blum
An explosion at the Los Angeles Times building in October 1910 leads to a mystery that ensnares filmmaker D.W. Griffith and famed attorney Clarence Darrow. The book was published in 2008.
‘The L.A Quartet’ by James Ellroy
The L.A. Quartet is a series of books by Ellroy set in 1950s Los Angeles. The books include “The Black Dahlia,” “The Big Nowhere,” “L.A. Confidential” and “White Jazz,” and they deal with the Hollywood and L.A. underworld full of sex, drugs, gangsters, communists, a billionaire and murder.
‘The Day of the Locust’ by Nathanael West
West’s tale deals with a young East Coast painter who is hired to work on a disaster film, his interaction with the fringes of Hollywood society and a climatic final scene that echoes the film.
‘Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood’ by Mark Harris
Harris writes how five films released in the late 1960s — “Bonnie and Clyde,” “The Graduate,” “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner,” “In the Heat of the Night” and “Doctor Doolittle” — resulted in a major shift in Hollywood.
Brian Fulton has been the librarian at The Times-Tribune for the past 15 years. On his blog, Historically Hip, he writes about the great concerts, plays/musicals and celebrity happenings that have taken place throughout NEPA. He is also the co-host of the local history podcast, Historically Hip. He competed and was crowned grand champion on an episode of NPR quiz show “Ask Me Another.” Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9140; or @TTPagesPast