Do you love to watch vintage films on Turner Classic Movies – steamy Bogie & Bacall romances, Errol Flynn swashbucklers, or MGM musicals starring Judy Garland in glorious Technicolor? Or maybe you’ve seen photos of the Sunset Strip nightclubs, like Ciro’s and the Mocambo, or a premiere at Grauman’s Chinese Theater?
Did you ever find yourself wondering what it was like to live in Hollywood during its glory years? To work at 20th Century Fox by day, and spend the evening at the Brown Derby?
Wouldn’t it be thrilling if someone invented a time machine to take you back to experience the glory and thrill of such a special time and place? Maybe one day that will happen, but until then, Martin Turnbull’s Hollywood Garden of Allah novels can whisk you back to the moment before talking pictures slugged Tinsel Town in the jaw.
In 1927, luminous silent-screen star Alla Nazimova converts her Sunset Boulevard estate into the Garden of Allah Hotel. Soon after she opens those lush grounds and recedes into its shadows, some of Hollywood’s most talented hopefuls check into her bungalows and begin to meet, drink, and revel through the long Los Angeles nights.
George Cukor swims laps in the Black-Sea-shaped pool, Tallulah Bankhead knocks back martinis by the bucketload in the Sahara Bar, and Scott Fitzgerald slips behind the bougainvillea with his lover, Sheilah Graham.
When a troubled screenwriter, Marcus Adler, an ace girl reporter, Kathryn Massey, and aspiring actress Gwendolyn Brick move in and make friends, we’re whisked along with them to leap and lurch, live and love through Hollywood’s golden years.
If you like compelling and memorable characters seamlessly intertwined with authentic and richly detailed history, then you’ll love Martin Turnbull’s portrayal of the City of Angels.
“Martin Turnbull has succeeded in doing what would seem to be the impossible – transporting readers to the Golden Age of Hollywood with a story that has its main characters mixing and mingling with the people and at the places all classic movie-aholics have heard about for so many years.” – Amazon review
“How can an author take a reader back in time so they feel the atmosphere, smell the smells, hear the background sounds and see every detail of an era long past? The answer to this question eludes me but this is exactly what Martin Turnbull has done in this spectacular book.” – Amazon review
“Great historical fiction starts with superb character development combined with accurate historical settings told through a compelling page-turning story line. The Garden of Allah series gets top-shelf honors in each of these.” – Amazon review
“As one who grew up in a town where virtually everyone was employed by a studio, Mr Turnbull’s novels are picture perfect.” – Amazon review
Martin is a rare author: a novelist whose expertise makes his fiction every bit as impressive as the work of the best biographers chronicling Hollywood’s golden age. Few writers specializing in historical novels can match Martin in the research. The accuracy and essence between his books’ covers help make his stories all the more compelling and believable. – James Zeruk, author of
Peg Entwistle and the Hollywood Sign Suicide: A Biography
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