Sunday, February 23, 2014

BOOK REVIEW : Clara Bow : Runnin' Wild by David Stenn

Clara Bow: Runnin' WildClara Bow: Runnin' Wild by David Stenn
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

As a major Clara Bow fan, sometimes you'll pick up a book and be sickened by the lies that endure through the decades, like the Kenneth Anger trash. But this book makes all of those fade away. This is the REAL Clara Bow. She was an actual person, one who felt, and cried, and feared, and hurt – just like we all do. But we can sometimes forget that about celebrities, and imagine that their lives are perfect fairy tales. Well, they're not, especially when you're used, abused and exploited by the people you made rich, by people who she helped make legends in the movie industry.

Clara Bow came from abject poverty, an abusive home, and had a mentally ill mother and an alcoholic, sexually and physically abusive father. The mere fact she didn't end up in a gutter somewhere is astonishing in itself. But Clara had a dream – to be in the movies, to be a star, to be loved the way she loved her favorite stars on the silver screen. Clara Bow is a legend. She's 'The 'It' Girl;' the one and only. Clara's face is the one we see when we think of a Silent Movie Star.

David Stenn writes from a place of love, respect and passion for his subject and is a joy to read. I've read several books on Clara Bow and for me 'Clara Bow : Runnin' Wild' is the definitive biography, researched meticulously and written beautifully.

Essential reading for anybody who loves Silent Era movies, Golden Age Hollywood, or is just a movie buff in general. An important book about one of Hollywood's best and brightest shining stars.

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