Thursday, July 20, 2017
True Crime Thursday: Tinseltown: Murder, Morphine, and Madness at the Dawn of Hollywood
This is a fantastic, gripping, brilliant true crime book.
What I noticed about Tinseltown right from the start is that it reads like a novel. It felt like I had picked up a whodunit, and was completely sucked in. Mann has this great writing style that is so easy and fun to read.
This is also an absolutely fascinating story, one that has remained unsolved for decades. Mann tells the true tale of William Desmond Taylor, a director and actor in the Roaring Twenties, whose murder remains a mystery to this day. Books have been written, webzines have been crafted, and conspiracy theories have been spun, but Mann has what he believes to finally be the true solution.
And Mann backs his solution up with lots and lots of impeccable research. He paints a living, breathing picture of Hollywood in the 1920s, from the movies, to the people who strove to not only create them, but to create their own destinies as famous and beloved stars. Mann focuses on three of these female stars and their personal and professional struggles, but also weaves in so many other important Hollywood figures of that time, and makes them all come alive for readers.
This is a wide-reaching book of non-fiction. Mann manages to not only discuss and attempt to solve a murder, but writes of all the scandals, backstage dealings, and politics that surrounded and enfolded Hollywood at that time.
This is a book I would definitely recommend. It's one that will be joining my other true crime favorites on my bookshelves.