Sunday, August 02, 2009

Book Review: Valley of the Dolls

Blogger book club with Andy, Sarah, Caity, and Amanda is still going strong...this month we chose a perfect summer read, Valley of the Dolls, by Jacqueline Susann. One glimpse at the cover pretty much tells you all you need to know about the book- written in 1966, the novel tells the story of three young women who move to New York City with big hopes for fame, fortune, and love. The classy Anne is a secretary turned model, Jennifer is a sexy, platinum blonde film star, and young Neely is the true talent of the three- a performer with a amazing voice and a tendency to self-destruct. The "dolls" referred to in the title are the prescription pills the women all turn to at different points in their lives. The three main characters were reportedly based on Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe, and Judy Garland. The book was an enormous commercial success, but the movie version starring Patty Duke as Neely and Sharon Tate (who was later murdered by the Charles Manson family) was panned by critics. We watched it last night and it was campy good fun. If you're looking for a entertaining book to read I highly recommend Valley of the Dolls- it's full of the timeless drama of success and failures in life and love.

1 comment:

Maria said...

I dug up this post so I could comment on it. I finished the book and loved it and now I've passed it on to my sister. Not sure when she will get around to reading it but I'm sure she will enjoy it.

I was amazed at how little has changed in Hollywood since this book was written in terms of drug use, plastic surgery, divorces, drama and in general, and the paparazzi. Great read.

I checked out Shadow of the Dolls from the library and it was written in 2001 and has put a contemporary spin on Anne and Neely.