One of the very old works of the author, this novel was published in 1976. Lt. Mr. Sidney Sheldon was a kind of a writer who used to create Crime Novels and Thrillers, but this one is neither.
It is a life story of two famous Hollywood stars, Groucho Marx and Erin Fleming, fictitiously represented as Toby Temple and Jill Castle in the book. The story starts with the childhood scenes of both the characters. Toby belonging to a German immigrant middle-class family in the US, whose mother has big dreams for him, encourages him to run away to Hollywood to make it huge. But, as always it was not easy for him at first, but with some help and luck, soon he found his way to success as a famous comedian.
Meanwhile, a Polish immigrant family had a daughter, who was born dead but was alive by some miracle. Because of this trauma, she has constant headaches throughout her life, which her mother, a devoted Catholic, believes a demon has possessed her daughter and wants her to a devoted God-fearing person as well. But, she being extremely beautiful, is socialized with higher society people. After constant insults and insecurities and a heart-broken relationship with a childhood crush, she also leaves for Hollywood to try her luck there.
What follows is the story of how Jill struggles through this toil, how she ends up meeting Toby, how their life follows and ends in an extreme tragedy. It was hard to believe it is a representation of a true story and how much a person can endure throughout their life and still stand up and smile for the sake of the world.
I found this book engrossing but not the best work of Sidney. It was like sitting through a catastrophe, afraid of letting it go. You hope throughout that it will all end up on a happier note, but no, this book promises you to give the most depressing vibes till the end. It also tells us, how much Hollywood seems flashier from the outside, is that much trashy in the inside.
On that note, I promise to bring my views on other more captivating works of Sidney soon.