Sunday, May 8, 2011

Valley of the Dolls

Valley of the Dolls
Jacqueline Susann


First off, my mom wanted me to read this book, and as always the obliging daughter, I did. I can't lie, though, I enjoyed this book as much as the next middle-aged housewife who hates her life. I'm just making a general assumption and say that's who reads this book. It's honestly really a good book though. Not a thought-provoking, Pulitzer Prize winning type book, but a good read. It's a Soap Opera that unfortunately ends (yes, I realize there is a sequel but I'm going to save that for the beach along with the sequel to Gone With the Wind). There are three central characters: Anne (who is, in my opinion, overrated. She's a beautiful, mysterious New Englander who moves to New York and, of course, lands a cushy secretarial job and has all of these rich men fawning over her. Oh, by the way, this takes place in the 40's through the 60's. Anne eventually ends up with a guy who cheats on her with her "best friend") Neely (she starts off as an eager 17 year old who wants nothing more than to be famous on Broadway, and she eventually, with Anne's help, becomes the most celebrated singer/actress in show business. But, alas, she becomes addicted to pills aka "dolls" and ends up in a Funny Farm as they call it. She gets her come back though, ruins some lives, mainly her own, and goes on her way) and last but not least, my favorite, Jennifer (She has all of these actual problems. She doesn't whine and cry like Anne. When I read the book I pictured her as Megan Fox, but apparently she has blonde hair. Clearly I don't read the details very well. Her story is tragic though, my favorite kind.)

The characters, while not well-developed, were able to capture your attention even if you didn't like them. Case and point: Anne. Anne ruined the whole book for me, to be honest. She was boring and selfish and not drug addicted. Boring. She got what ever she could possibly want, yet it wasn't enough. I really didn't put this book down for more than ten minutes a day. It was that good.

I'm not entirely sure if I loved it so much because I love that time period and anything that has to do with Hollywood, or if it was just a good book.

Now I have to make the big decision: Do I watch the movie now or after I read the sequel. I can't wait for Anne to get addicted to dolls because that's obviously what's coming in Shadow of the Dolls

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