Issue: Winter 2021-22

Winter Reading

In Tied Up In Knotts a loving daughter provides a full-life narrative of her father: Don Knott’s difficult childhood in an abusive home, his army service in World War II, his escape into comedic performance, becoming a household name, his growth as a feature film actor, and his family life throughout, leading to intimate and personal moments. His daughter Karen Knotts will delight readers with the memories of celebrities touched by Don’s life and delves beyond Barney Fife nostalgia to tell the life story of a man and father.

Vanderbilt is written with a unique insider’s viewpoint. Author and journalist Anderson Cooper teams with best-selling historian and novelist, Katherine Howe, to chronicle the rise and fall of a legendary American dynasty: Cooper’s mother’s family, the Vanderbilts. The book is a fascinating tale that begins on the hardscrabble wharves of old Manhattan and ends in lavish drawing rooms of Gilded Age Fifth Avenue. A rollicking, quintessentially American story, the legendary family, and their outsized influence comes to life as the authors wryly recount the triumphs and tragedies of an American dynasty unlike no other.

Daughter of acclaimed British actor Sir John Mills, Hayley Mills began her acting career as a preteen and was quickly thrust into the spotlight. One of the biggest child stars of the 1960s, her teenage decade in Hollywood produced some of the era’s greatest coming-of-age family movies. Her book Forever Young is a memoir told with warmth, honesty, and humor. Hayley takes us back in time to a bygone era when Hollywood was still Tinseltown, as she shares her regrets, her joys, and her challenges of being bound to a wholesome, youthful public image.

Author Christian Blauvelt pens a riveting tale of how the film industry joined the Allied effort during the second World War. Hollywood Victory recalls the time when all of Hollywood—with the express encouragement and investment of the government—joined forces to defend the American way of life and the gravest threat facing the world. Industry output included war films reminding moviegoers what they were fighting for and “homefront” stories to help boost troop morale. Stars sold war bonds and entertained; some enlisted and fought. It is a story of once-in-a-century unity.

In March 2019, Disney took ownership of the movie empire that was Fox. This marked the end of an era. For almost a century, 20th Century-Fox was one of the preeminent producers of films, stars, and filmmakers. Its unique identity in the industry and place in movie history is unparalleled—one of the greatest stories to come out of Hollywood and, one man, the legendary producer Darryl F. Zanuck, is the heart of the story. Scott Eyman’s book20th Century-Fox: Darryl F. Zanuck and the Creation of the Modern Film Studio is the tale of the films, stars, intrigue, and innovations of the iconic studio that was.

Rounding out our book list, former film industry fiancé exec—now award-winning author—Lorraine Evanoff continues the third in her series of international banking spy thrillers, Devil’s Ledger, and the exploits of mystery-solving expert Louise Moscow. After cracking her last criminal global banking case, the CIA has recruited Louise Moscow into their financial crimes division taking Louise to Siena in the heart of Italy…and the devil’s in the details. Her investigation discovers a mysterious treasure and a new enemy, The Master of the Russian Dark Arts, and Evanoff gives readers another page-turner just in time for the holidays. DH