Book review: All the Stars in the Heavens by Adriana Trigiani

Adriana Trigiani, author of the blockbuster epic The Shoemaker's Wife, returns with her biggest and boldest novel yet, a hypnotic tale based on the Hollywood life of film star Loretta Young.
All the Stars in the Heavens byAdriana TrigianiAll the Stars in the Heavens byAdriana Trigiani
All the Stars in the Heavens byAdriana Trigiani

In this spectacular saga, as beguiling as Hollywood itself, Trigiani takes us back to Tinsel Town’s golden age, an era as brutal as it was glittering, and into the complex and glamorous world of a young actress hungry for fame and success.

The movie business is booming in 1935 when 21-year-old Loretta Young meets 34-year-old Clark Gable on the set of The Call of the Wild. Although he is already married, Gable falls for the stunning and vivacious young actress.

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Far from the bright lights of Hollywood, Sister Alda Ducci has been forced to leave her convent and begin a new journey that leads her to Loretta. Becoming Miss Young’s secretary, the innocent and pious young Alda must navigate the wild terrain of Hollywood with fierce determination and a moral code that derives from her Italian roots.

Over the course of decades, she and Loretta encounter scandal and adventure, choose love and passion, and forge an enduring bond of love and loyalty that will be put to the test when they eventually face the greatest obstacle of their lives.

All the Stars in the Heavens captures the lustre, drama, power and secrets that could only thrive in the studio system, all viewed through the lives of an unforgettable cast of players creating magic on the screen and behind the scenes.

Trigiani takes us on a worldwide ride of adventure from Hollywood to the shores of southern Italy. With meticulous detail, she paints a rich, historical landscape of 1930s Los Angeles, where European and American artisans flocked to pursue the ultimate dream… to tell stories on the silver screen.

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Brimming with larger-than-life characters both real and fictional, including stars Spencer Tracy, Myrna Loy, David Niven, Hattie McDaniel and more, this is the unforgettable story of one of cinema’s greatest love affairs during the golden age of American movie making.

(Simon & Schuster, hardback, £14.99)

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