4 Great Reads for Memorial Day Weekend
What could make the first weekend of summer more delightful than new fiction that sizzles? Read these on the deck.
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Another Side of Paradise
something deliciously dishy with a side of wry? This golden age Hollywood novel
is your ticket. Filled with movie stars and moguls from the late 1930s, it
chronicles the turbulent love affair between F. Scott Fitzgerald and the powerful
gossip columnist Sheilah Graham. Raised in a London slum, with a stint in an
orphanage, Graham fabricated an upper-class past and made herself into Hollywood
royalty. Fitzgerald, meanwhile, was down on his luck. His novels were out of
print; his screenplays were flopping; his wife, Zelda, had taken up permanent
residence in a psychiatric facility; and he was drinking. Narrated by Graham,
the story of their passionate liaison is loaded with trenchant observations ("Scott
Fitzgerald strikes me as a rare osprey caught in a habitat even more unnatural
for him than for the rest of us in Hollywood") and witty quips ("The
rich are different.
Their taste is worse."). The hat worn by her serpent-tongued rival,
columnist Hedda Hopper, looks like "a floral tribute for a murdered
mobster." Beneath the bons mots and fizzy glamour lies the yearning for
genuine connection—to be truly seen and loved.
— Dawn Raffel