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The Magnificent Esme Wells: A Novel de…
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The Magnificent Esme Wells: A Novel (edició 2019)

de Adrienne Sharp (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
356565,106 (3.81)4
From the nationally bestselling author of The True Memoirs of Little K, a deeply felt and historically detailed novel of family, loss, and love, told by an irrepressible young girl--the daughter of a two-bit gangster and a movie showgirl--growing up in golden-age Hollywood and Las Vegas in its early days. Esme Silver has always taken care of her charming ne'er-do-well father, Ike Silver, a small-time crook with dreams of making it big with Bugsy Siegel. Devoted to her daddy, Esme is often his "date" at the racetrack, where she amiably fetches the hot dogs while keeping an eye to the ground for any cast-off tickets that may be winners. In awe of her mother, Dina Wells, Esme is more than happy to be the foil who gets the beautiful Dina into meetings and screen tests with some of Hollywood's greats. When Ike gets an opportunity to move to Vegas--and, in what could at last be his big break, to help the man she knows as "Benny" open the Flamingo Hotel--life takes an unexpected turn for Esme. A stunner like her mother, the young girl catches the attention of Nate Stein, one of the Strip's most powerful men. Narrated by the twenty-year-old Esme, The Magnificent Esme Wells moves between pre-WWII Hollywood and postwar Las Vegas--a golden age when Jewish gangsters and movie moguls were often indistinguishable in looks and behavior. Esme's voice--sharp, observant, and with a quiet, mordant wit--chronicles the rise and fall and further fall of her complicated parents, as well as her own painful reckoning with love and life. A coming-of-age story with a tinge of noir, and a tale that illuminates the promise and perils of the American dream and its dreamers, The Magnificent Esme Wells is immersive, moving, and compelling.… (més)
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» Mira també 4 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 6 (següent | mostra-les totes)
A dark coming of age story set in Los Angeles and Las Vegas in the 1940's and 1950's. Esme Wells is the young daughter of feckless parents - a mother who dreams of being a movie star, but never emerges from a Busby Berkley chorus line and a father who is a small time failed gambler and gangster wannabe. Uneducated and not very well cared for, Esme is also ambitious, but it's a warped ambition of the bright lights of the movie studios and the neon glitter of Vegas.

After her mother dies of a botch abortion, Esme and her father hook up with Bugsy Siegel and move to Las Vegas and into his famous Flamingo hotel. There Esme, now as beautiful as her mother one was attracts the attention of one of the most powerful (and dangerous) men on the strip. When Bugsy is killed, this man holds the key to Esme's success.

But is it worth it? Jaded at 21, and confronted with one more brutal death, she finally (maybe) finds the strength to walk away. Well written, but depressing. ( )
  etxgardener | Jun 22, 2018 |
This is Esmes story, a story full of glitz and glsmour, but also sorrow and heartache. A mother who is a show girl in B films and a father who is an inveterate gambler and risk taker. Not a stable childhood, moving from place to place, not stable but definitely interesting. Enter sorrow and Esme and her father end up in Las Vegas. Last Zvegas in the fifties was just rmerging, the strip becoming a gamblers paradise. Huge hotels bigger than life shows, men who own it all, some resl, dome not. Bugsy Siegal, Mickey Cohen, these Jewish big money men who own it all. It is here that Esme will finish growing up, where her father will work in the money cages in the casinos.

I loved this, it was a fantastic mix of the best and worst of Vegas. Where people dream big and make or break a fortune. Where Esme will become larger than life until.........The writing is wonderful, descriptive, visual and honest. We meet future stars, a young Judy Garland and other headliners. Because when big money beckons, they will come. I adored Esme, she is truly magnificent, she manuevers through this life style, gives in to it when she has too, but adores her father, and manages not to become jaded. She has regrets, finds trouble or trouble finds her, because once Vegas has you, it is not easy to get out. Remember, one way or another, the house always wins.

ARC from Edelweiss. ( )
  Beamis12 | Apr 26, 2018 |
Historical fiction, that brings to life the era of the mob in Vegas in the 50's. The Jewish mob. As seen thru the eyes of 'Baby E' , the lonely child of a gangster wannabe and a beautiful. stage dancer wannabe.
I really enjoyed it!
What kept this book from being full-fledged 5 * 's, is the back and forth style that interrupts the flow of the storyline.
You will be immersed in L.A. in the 30's only to be jolted into the 50's in Vegas. Esme herself as a 'pet' child and then grown-up Esme as the girlfriend of a much-older crime Boss. Once you get used to the jolt-y timeline it really does become a worthwhile read. ( )
  linda.marsheells | Apr 24, 2018 |
Sharp’s beautifully drawn historical fiction lets us follow Esme, the irrepressible daughter or a Mafia gofer and a Busby Berkley showgirl, as she comes of age amid racetracks, casinos, mobsters, and starlets. WWII-era Los Angeles and postwar Las Vegas come vibrantly alive with vivid historical perceptions. Sharp tracks the success and violence of tough Jews building movie and casino empires while Hitler bloodied Europe. Funny, violent, heartbreaking and profound, this is a novel of family, loss, and love told by an irrepressible young girl. I think you are going to love it as much as I did!
  HandelmanLibraryTINR | Apr 16, 2018 |
I just loved this coming of age story about Esme. Her family may not have been a conventional one but it was her family. Her father was a strong presence in her life. Again, he may not have won any "best father of the year" awards but he still loved Esme.

Esme got her beauty from her mother. This proved to be both a good thing and a bad thing. It attracted men like Nate. He had the whole mobster/gangster vibe about him. He is the type that could eat Esme up and spit her out but Esme showed strength until the end.

I was vibing with all of the characters. They really brought to life the story. Thus making it such an easy and enjoyable time reading this book. The Magnificent Esme Wells is a memorable book filled with engaging characters that will stick with you even after the last page has been read! ( )
  Cherylk | Mar 31, 2018 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 6 (següent | mostra-les totes)
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From the nationally bestselling author of The True Memoirs of Little K, a deeply felt and historically detailed novel of family, loss, and love, told by an irrepressible young girl--the daughter of a two-bit gangster and a movie showgirl--growing up in golden-age Hollywood and Las Vegas in its early days. Esme Silver has always taken care of her charming ne'er-do-well father, Ike Silver, a small-time crook with dreams of making it big with Bugsy Siegel. Devoted to her daddy, Esme is often his "date" at the racetrack, where she amiably fetches the hot dogs while keeping an eye to the ground for any cast-off tickets that may be winners. In awe of her mother, Dina Wells, Esme is more than happy to be the foil who gets the beautiful Dina into meetings and screen tests with some of Hollywood's greats. When Ike gets an opportunity to move to Vegas--and, in what could at last be his big break, to help the man she knows as "Benny" open the Flamingo Hotel--life takes an unexpected turn for Esme. A stunner like her mother, the young girl catches the attention of Nate Stein, one of the Strip's most powerful men. Narrated by the twenty-year-old Esme, The Magnificent Esme Wells moves between pre-WWII Hollywood and postwar Las Vegas--a golden age when Jewish gangsters and movie moguls were often indistinguishable in looks and behavior. Esme's voice--sharp, observant, and with a quiet, mordant wit--chronicles the rise and fall and further fall of her complicated parents, as well as her own painful reckoning with love and life. A coming-of-age story with a tinge of noir, and a tale that illuminates the promise and perils of the American dream and its dreamers, The Magnificent Esme Wells is immersive, moving, and compelling.

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