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Karina Longworth, the host and producer of the podcast, "You Must Remember This", has written a well-researched and engaging biography of Howard Hughes, mainly focusing on his Hollywood years. If you are interested in old Hollywood, this book is for you.
My favorite quote:
"...perceived as a rube by the Hollywood elite, Hughes was a quick study when interested. With only a little experience he understood rapidly, and perhaps better than anyone else of his era, how to use publicity to project an image that could then become real- or, at least perceived to be real. Above all, Hughes understood how easily the gap between perception and reality could be made to disappear, and how to manipulate the blurred line to his advantage."

This sums up how he manipulated the public, shareholders and most of all, the many women he "seduced", with promises of marriage and stardom. I kept wondering why the women in his life put up with what one coined, his "play-acting". He was truly a master-manipulator.
Growing up in the 1970s, I recall the speculation about Hughes' whereabouts. Reports about the condition of his body at his death was a testimony to the seclusion and neglect of the final years of his life. What a contrast and to the larger than life aviator, businessman, and lothario of his time in Hollywood.
Very interesting!
 
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Chrissylou62 | 22 andra recensioner | Apr 11, 2024 |
While seemingly not as "in the open", Hollywood really hasn't changed much. I knew the basics about Howard Hughes, the obsession with female breasts and the later seclusion in Las Vegas, I never fully grasped how poor a businessman he was (buying things because he could afford it and then quickly running it to the ground (much like a similar tycoon today)), he was also very much a bit of a scumbag (much like a similar tycoon today).
I thoroughly enjoy 'You Must Remember This', Ms. Longworth's podcast about Hollywood history, which is mainly the reason I picked up this book. I'm glad I did, completely readable and enjoyable. I will certainly pick up her other books.
 
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hhornblower | 22 andra recensioner | Jan 20, 2024 |
I thought this book was fascinating not only in capturing history through the points of view of women entangled in the life of Howard Hughes, but also for how that history is reflected in our own time. The narratives surrounding female film stars, and women in general, today are not radically different than they were in the 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, and on. What Longworth is able to do is show through a series of portraits of women involved with Hughes is how different women were able to shape, or be shaped by those narratives. It is a beautiful work of empathy and respect for the women caught in the net of one powerful and insane man's lies.
 
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megacool24 | 22 andra recensioner | Dec 18, 2023 |
Disclaimer: The genre of this book is not something i would normally seek out as a reader. I was nonetheless fascinated by how much is pieced together, the common threads interwoven, and how these connections were presented to the reader. The pacing/timing is interesting; for the demographics of the expected readership, I would imagine this book would be appreciated even more. The subject matter is quite serious, the writing is solid, and the work done to compose this book is in earnest. When this book was released, it was (and certainly still is) incredibly prescient. If this book is classed in one the subjects or genres that any given reader enjoys, this book may very well be worth the read.
 
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Mensasex | 22 andra recensioner | Jan 15, 2023 |
it's karina longworth so it's entertaining, nuanced, devastating, interested in the female perspective and fantastically written. i also just want to add that i didn't immediately pick this up when it came out even though i'm a huge "you must remember this" fan because i wasn't familiar with (or interested in) howard hughes at all and i can't emphasize enough how much this book is FOR people who don't know or care about howard hughes–- she uses his life as a wealthy, controlling, strange, mediocre man to write really insightfully about hollywood and specifically about the actresses in his orbit who are all 500 times more interesting and talented than he could ever be, and the tragedy of these women coming into contact with him.

also, as always, i was in a reading rut and this book had me up until 2am frantically turning pages.
 
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okonomiyako | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 28, 2020 |
Review of: Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood,
by Karina Longworth
by Stan Prager (7-31-20)

“When people ask me if I went to film school, I tell them, 'No, I went to films,'” Quentin Tarantino famously quipped. While I’m no iconic director, I too “went to films,” in a manner of speaking. I was raised by my grandmother in the 1960s—with a little help from a 19” console TV in the living room and seven channels delivered via rooftop antenna. When cartoons, soaps, or prime time westerns and sitcoms like Bonanza and Bewitched weren’t broadcasting, all the remaining airtime was filled with movies. All kinds of movies: drama, screwball comedies, war movies, gangster movies, horror movies, sci-fi, musicals, love stories, murder mysteries—you name the genre, it ran. And ran. And ran. For untold hours and days and weeks and years.
Grandma—rest in peace—loved movies. Just loved them. All kinds of movies. But she didn’t have much of a discerning eye: for her, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre was no better or worse than Bedtime for Bonzo. At first, I didn’t know any better, and whether I was four or fourteen I watched whatever was on, whenever she was watching. But I took a keen interest. The immersion paid dividends. My tastes evolved. One day I began calling them films instead of movies, and even turned into something of a “film geek,” arguing against the odds that Casablanca is a better picture than Citizen Kane, promoting Kubrick’s Paths of Glory over 2001, and shamelessly confessing to screening Tarantino’s Kill Bill I and II back-to-back more than a dozen times. In other words, I take films pretty seriously. So, when I noticed that Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood was up for grabs in an early reviewer program, I jumped at the opportunity. I was not to be disappointed.
In an extremely well-written and engaging narrative, film critic and journalist Karina Longworth has managed to turn out a remarkable history of Old Hollywood, in the guise of a kind of biography of Howard Hughes. In films, a “MacGuffin” is something insignificant or irrelevant in itself that serves as a device to trigger the plot. Examples include the “Letters of Transit” in Casablanca, the statuette in The Maltese Falcon, and the briefcase in Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction. Howard Hughes himself is the MacGuffin of sorts in Seduction, which is far less about him than his female victims and the peculiar nature of the studio system that enabled predators like Hughes and others who dominated the motion picture industry.
Howard Hughes was once one of the most famous men in America, known for his wealth and genius, a larger-than-life legend noted both for his exploits as aviator and flamboyance as a film producer given to extravagance and star-making. But by the time I was growing up, all that was in the distant past, and Hughes was little more than a specter in supermarket tabloids, an eccentric billionaire turned recluse. It was later said that he spent most days alone, sitting naked in a hotel room watching movies. Long unseen by the public, at his death he was nearly unrecognizable, skeletal and covered in bedsores. Director Martin Scorsese resurrected him for the big screen in his epic biopic “The Aviator,” headlined by Leonardo DiCaprio and a star-studded cast, which showcased Hughes as a heroic and brilliant iconoclast who in turn took on would-be censors, the Hollywood studio system, the aviation industry and anyone who might stand in the way of his quest for glory—all while courting a series of famed beauties. Just barely in frame was the mental instability, the emerging Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder that later brought him down.
Longworth finds Hughes a much smaller and more despicable man, an amoral narcissist and manipulator who was seemingly incapable of empathy for other human beings. (Yes, there is indeed a palpable resemblance to a certain president!) While Hughes carefully crafted an image of a titan who dominated the twin arenas of flight and film, in Longworth’s portrayal he seems to crash more planes than he lands, and churns out more bombs than blockbusters. In the public eye, he was a great celebrity, but off-screen he comes off as an unctuous villain, a charlatan whose real skill set was self-promotion empowered by vast sums of money and a network of hangers-on. The author gives him his due by denying him top billing as the star of the show, rather giving scrutiny to those in his orbit, the females in supporting roles whom he in turn dominated, exploited and discarded. You can almost hear refrains of Carly Simon’s You’re So Vain interposed in the narrative, taunting the ghost of Hughes with the chorus: “You probably think this song is about you”—which by the way would make a great soundtrack if there’s ever a screen adaptation of the book.
If not Hughes, the real main character is Old Hollywood itself, and with a skillful pen, Longworth turns out a solid history—a decidedly feminist history—of the place and time that is nothing less than superlative. The author recreates for us the early days before the tinsel, when a sleepy little “dry” town no one had ever heard of almost overnight became the celluloid capital of the country. Pretty girls from all over America would flock there on a pilgrimage to fame; most disappointed, many despairing, more than a few dead. Nearly all were preyed upon by a legion of the contemptible, used and abused with a thin tissue of lies and promises that anchored them not only to the geography but to the predominantly male movers and shakers who dominated the studio system that literally dominated everything else. This is a feminist history precisely because Longworth focuses on these women—more specifically ten women involved with Hughes—and through them brilliantly captures Hollywood’s golden age as manifested in both the glamorous and the tawdry.
Howard Hughes was not the only predator in Tinseltown, of course, but arguably its most depraved. If Hollywood power-brokers overpromised fame to hosts of young women just to bed them, for Hughes sex was not even always the principal motivation. It went way beyond that, often to twisted ends perhaps unclear to even Hughes himself. He indeed took many lovers, but those he didn’t sleep with were not exempt to his peculiar brand of exploitation. What really got Howard Hughes off was exerting power over women, controlling them, owning them. He virtually enslaved some of these women, stripping them of their individual freedom of will for months or even years with vague hints at eventual stardom, abetted by assorted handlers appointed to spy on them and report back to him. Even the era of “Me Too” lacks the appropriate vocabulary to describe his level of “creepy!”
One of the women he apparently did not take to bed was Jane Russell. Hughes cast the beautiful, voluptuous nineteen year old in The Outlaw, a film that took forever to produce and release largely due to his fetishistic obsession with Russell’s breasts—and the way these spilled out of her a dress in a promotional poster that provoked the ire of censors. Longworth’s treatment of the way Russell unflappably endured her long association with Hughes—despite his relentless domination over her life and career—is just one of the many delightful highlights in Seduction.
The Outlaw, incidentally, was one of the movies I recall watching with Grandma back in the day. Her notions of Hollywood had everything to do with the glamorous and the glorious, of handsome leading men and lovely leading ladies up on the silver screen. I can’t help wondering what she might think if she learned how those ladies were tormented by Hughes and other moguls of the time. I wish I could tell her about it, about this book. Alas, that’s not possible, but I can urge anyone interested in this era to read Seduction. If authors of film history could win an Academy Award, Longworth would have an Oscar on her mantle to mark this outstanding achievement.


Review of: Seduction: Sex, Lies, Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood, by Karina Longworth https://regarp.com/2020/07/31/review-of-seduction-sex-lies-stardom-in-howard-hug...
 
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Garp83 | 22 andra recensioner | Jul 31, 2020 |
I knew it was going to be good because Karina Longworth, and it was.

(For sheer writing and research, this should get 5 stars. But Hughes was so awful, I can't do it.)
 
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the_lirazel | 22 andra recensioner | Apr 6, 2020 |
You have heard about people who exhibit a fine line between insanity and genius. That adage could be applied to the man who inherited Hughes Tool Company. Howard Hughes Junior’s fortune started when his father died. The senior Howard Hughes was initially wealthy because of a company that manufactured drill bits for use in the oil fields. Howard Junior was the only inheritor of that wealth in 1924.

The younger Hughes parlayed his wealth into new pursuits after transplanting himself from Houston to California. There he veered off into two new lucrative directions. He produced motion pictures with his RKO studio organization, and also was big in early commercial aviation. Have you ever heard of TWA? If you are old enough, you remember TWA. He was the guy behind that venture.

A remarkable young author named Karina Longworth exhaustively researched exploits of the late Mr. Hughes. For an author so young, she shows a surprising interest in the time frame when cinema was transitioning into the era of “talkies.” She was not born until 1980, but the book resurrects names of many actresses with whom Hughes crossed paths. Examples include Clara Bow, Katherine Hepburn, Ava Gardner, Jane Russell, and Ida Lupino.

Hughes was a womanizer. Whether his young starlets slept with Hughes is not always something Ms. Longworth was able to discover, but she certainly dug into it. There are stories of things she learned that could be considered prurient interest. If Hughes were alive today I suspect it not unlikely that he would be sharing the spotlight with Harvey Weinstein.

The book is chock full of fascinating Hughes facts. He was a codeine addict near the end of his life. It could be considered a miracle that he did not meet his demise in a plane crash. There were crashes, and there were times when he barely escaped with his life. Films produced by Hughes came under close scrutiny by the censors. He continually pushed the limits with regards to what was considered acceptable screen fare for the day and age.

Longworth tells us that as Hughes as approached the end of his life, he feared black people and germs. He loved watching old movies and was known to view films in his own screening room. Sometimes he watched for hours while totally naked. To be able to request the movie he wanted to see late at night while watching TV, he purchased a television station in Las Vegas. He was an eccentric, quirky guy.

Thanks for a great book, Karina. It's called Seduction: Sex, Lies and Stardom in Howard Hughes Hollywood. This one is worth the maximum number of stars!
 
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JamesBanzer | 22 andra recensioner | Feb 8, 2019 |
If you find yourself glancing at the periodicals for the latest news each time you pass through the supermarket checkout line you are likely to enjoy Karina Longworth's “Seduction: Sex, Lies and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood,” even if the Hollywood gossip inside is more than half a century out of date.

The book is something of a Howard Hughes biography, although Hughes disappears from the text, as he did from the Hollywood scene, for long periods of time. Mostly Longworth writes about the women in his life, and there were many of them. The names of the Hollywood actresses that fell into his orbit include many of the most prominent actresses from the 1920s through the 1950s: Billie Dove, Jean Harlow, Bette Davis, Ginger Rogers, Katherine Hepburn, Jane Russell, Ida Lupino, Ava Gardner, Gina Lollabrigida, Jean Peters and Terry Moore, among others.

Hughes used these women, and shamelessly so, but the women also used him, or at least tried to. Jane Russell was one who actually got the best of him, even if he turned her into more of a sex symbol than she wanted. Some of the women, notably Peters and Moore, fell in love with him and, for a time, were willing to live with his lies and manipulation.

Longworth writes of Hughes, "He seemed to draw comfort, if not pleasure, from knowing women were waiting for him to pay attention to them -- and then withholding that attention." His standard operating procedure was to scout out young beauties, often by watching movies for hours, even days, at a time. Then he would have his agents sign them to contracts, promising them acting lessons and a chance at Hollywood stardom. His spies would follow them everywhere, controlling every part of their lives. Often they would never even meet Hughes, nor ever get a part in a movie. Others became stars more in spite of Hughes than because of him.

From a young age Hughes had been reclusive and afraid of germs. That became worse as he aged, especially after some spectacular air crashes and getting knocked on the head by Ava Gardner after he abused her. Eventually he gave up pursuing woman and was content just to watch them in movies around the clock.

The book, like Hughes in his prime, is seductive, but something less than good.
 
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hardlyhardy | 22 andra recensioner | Jan 4, 2019 |
As a devoted fan of Longworth's podcast "You Must Remember This," I was eager to read this book and was not disappointed. The writing is accessible to any casual fan of Hollywood history, although the length of the book and depth of detail requires a deeper interest level. Many books about Hollywood and its stars rely on sensationalized rumors and unsubstantiated gossip, but Longworth fact-checks rumors that are part of the common lore and lays out the verifiable facts of the stories. Stars are not romanticized and behavior is called what it is (racist, sexist, etc.). I found every bit of this book fascinating.
 
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bookcookie1920 | 22 andra recensioner | Dec 26, 2018 |
No matter who we are, female movie stars speak to us. They give us symbols to crush on, or idolize, or reject. For millionaire tycoon Howard Hughes, though, they were what he wanted to collect. Karina Longworth had put together several episodes of her excellent podcast, You Must Remember This, about women who'd been involved personally and/or professionally with Hughes, and compiled that information and more into Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes' Hollywood. For all that his public memory seems to be tied up with the Spruce Goose and being a famous recluse who at one point maybe wandered around the Nevada desert, he not only dated a string of Tinseltown's most famous women, but bought and ran a studio. He was a significant figure in the Golden Age of Hollywood.

Longworth mostly eschews the trappings of traditional biography, except for a relatively brief discussion of Hughes' early life. She's not trying to write that book. Instead, she's trying (and succeeds!) in writing a book that focuses on his connections to the movie industry and the actresses who populated it. From his romancing of silent star Billie Dove, to launching the career of Jean Harlow when he cast her to be "the girl" in the long-gestating aviation epic Hell's Angels, to a serious romance with Katharine Hepburn, to his discovery of Jane Russell and controversial ad campaign for The Outlaw, the movie he made with her, Hughes was deeply immersed in cinema and its world. Through the purchase of the studio RKO, he was also able to gain enormous amounts of control over young women who dreamed of being stars.

That this control, that he was able to exert over his contracted actresses and that he attempted (and sometimes succeeded) to exercise over his movie-star girlfriends, tells us a lot about the person Howard Hughes was, how he saw himself, and how he saw women is what Longworth bases her narrative on. A clear pattern emerges, of the type of pretty, busty brunette he tended towards, of the Madonna/whore dichotomy in which he placed them, of the way he allowed many of them to disappear from view because he didn't have anything to give them, but didn't want anyone else to have them. Hughes was not alone among studio runners in his neglect of contracted talent, or his attempts to run the lives of those women to a certain set of standards. That was par for the (gross) course for the time, but his was especially exacting and rigid. Things come to a close for Longworth's purposes not long after he divested himself of the studio and left California for Nevada, though his marriage to actress Jean Peters and continued obsession with film give some shading to that part of his life.

I found this a truly well-crafted, engaging work of non-fiction. Though my tolerance for "boring" history is substantial, I always appreciate a lively narrative that does more than recite a series of events, and Longworth accomplishes that here. Her background with podcasting does show itself a bit in the slightly episodic form of the book (which I didn't think detracted from it at all), but it also shows itself in her ability to think about the work as a storyteller with an audience to engage. She's very skilled at structuring her material to match a narrative arc, and despite being over 500 pages long, it doesn't get dull or drag. Rather, it's a fascinating and sometime enraging portrait of a man with profound psychological demons who was able to mistreat women without consequences because of his wealth and position in the world. I really enjoyed reading this book and recommend it heartily to anyone who enjoys not just Old Hollywood, but the movies/celebrity culture in general...a lot of what we see today is different more in scale than substance.½
 
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ghneumann | 22 andra recensioner | Dec 14, 2018 |
Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood is a thoroughly researched account of Howard Hughes and his many connections to Hollywood starlets. Hughes ran (into the ground) RKO studios for many years where in concentrated more on "collecting" women that believed he would turn them into stars. While he did discover Jane Russel and prior to his RKO years, Jean Harlow, for the most part, Hughes strung these women along on promises and false hope. He would sign them to contracts and keep them busy with acting, singing and dancing classes, but most of them never even ended up appearing in Hughes films. He also dated and pursued stars such as Katherine Hepburn, Ava Gardner, Rita Hayworth and Bette Davis.
 
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kristenembers | 22 andra recensioner | Dec 8, 2018 |
The first thing to know about this book is that it is everything I look for in a historical text: It reads like a novel, and it is exhaustively researched. This incredible history of the Classic Hollywood era examines the prices paid by the beautiful female faces that lit up the silver screen from the mid-1920s through the mid-1950s. Using Howard Hughes and the various women that cycled through his life as a lens (Billie Dove, Jean Harlow, Katherine Hepburn to name a few), Longworth takes a deep dive into the lives of women who for too long have been reduced to their movies and looks. What results is a stunning examination of the origins and effects of the Hollywood machine which is truly thought-provoking in an era of #metoo.

It is rare to find a non-fiction historical text as readable as this. Longworth has taken the time to imbue her subjects with humanity, and tells their stories in an intersecting narrative style that is unafraid of revealing a bit of emotion. The text is underpinned with a strong research method rooted in archival materials, period films, oral histories, and more, and Longworth points out these sourcing choices within the text. Historiographically, this book adds much to the literature on Classic Hollywood at the intersection of womens rights, labor rights, and feminism.

All personalities in this book - including Hughes - are laid bare, and Longworth seeks to paint accurate pictures of her subjects while also injecting copious observations from their contemporaries and press coverage from the era.

In short, this book has everything for many audiences - voracious readers in search of an engrossing book, historians of the 20th century, particularly pop culture and film, and readers interested in the deep legacy of #metoo across decades.
 
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Jess.Rudy | 22 andra recensioner | Dec 4, 2018 |
No rose-colored glasses here. While primarily a biography of Howard Hughes Longworth portrays a wild west atmosphere of Hollywood in the ‘30s and ‘40s. This is definitely a must read for all those interested in the current climate, as well as those of old time Hollywood.
 
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mrmapcase | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 24, 2018 |
Although not a biography of Howard Hughes, this book does place him, from boyhood until his death, at the center of an incredible story. The sheer number of women with whom he was involved in Hollywood is staggering. From silent, then early-sound star Billie Dove through his relationship with Jean Peters, the author details Hughes complicated, controlling relationships with many of Hollywood's well-known names, as well as telling the story of the many women Hughes kept "under contract" and under his control for many years, sometimes literally keeping them locked within a house or hotel suite he owned or controlled. His obsessions with airplanes, women and certain of their assets, and movies, as well as the indications of his phobias and possible mental illness are well-documented. I learned much about Hughes and his peculiarities, but the book also takes a reader through the stories of many famous Hollywood stars: Ava Gardner, Katherine Hepburn, Jean Peters, Faith Domergue, Terry Moore, Jane Russell, Ginger Rogers, Ida Lupino, and many others. A fascinating look at Hollywood during Hughes' time.
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Dgryan1 | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 16, 2018 |
At first glance one wonders why this book, ostensibly a biography of Howard Hughes, is titled "Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom..." Is the author just using a more sensational title to attract attention? But once you get into it, you realize that this is not just about Hughes. Yes, he is the central figure whose birth to death is the through line of the story, with all the various events swirling around him. But the majority of the book is more the careers of the many women in Hughes's life, from Jean Harlow to Katherine Hepburn to Ava Gardner to Terry Moore. And these stories take place against the background of a history of Hollywood, from its silent movie beginnings to the blacklist of the '50s. The book is decidedly oriented toward the view of the women, rather than of Hughes, as it is focused on how Hollywood, and he particularly, treated them, as objects and ways to make money. Their views and interactions are set forth in much detail, so it is a very personal and human story, which keeps it from being a dry historical account. The author is an experienced writer and researcher about Hollywood, and the book shows it in its extensive documentation, down to every detail. However, the author has a light touch and a sense of humor. So although some biographies can be a bit boring, I found myself caught up in the story and eager to follow it through to the final pages, where Hughes ends up in the more publicly known reclusive phase of his life.½
 
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RickLA | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 12, 2018 |
Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood by Karina Longworth covers Howard Hughes's life from a young boy until his death at seventy years old. And what a life. I do think there was something mentally wrong with him. This is the story of Hughes and the many stars and starlets who passed through his hands over the years. So many of them well known names today like Jane Russell, Bette Davis, Katherine Hepburn and many more all had their day with Hughes. I was amazed to learn how young many of these women were when first discovered by Hughes. Fifteen, sixteen years old was not unusual. Howard was very rich as a young orphan and he turned that inheritance into vast money: yet he died without a will. The story of him and the stars fascinates but the synopsis of every film he made or "his women" made can be taxing. If you like Hollywood gossip and intrigue you will like this book.
 
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SigmundFraud | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 11, 2018 |
Received through Early Reviewers...
A very fresh and entertaining look at Howard Hughes, along with the women that surrounded him, as well as the times they lived in. I particularly enjoyed the format the author used, breaking up Hughes's life by using the women he was closest to at the time. This makes for several books in one, as each of these ladies is given ample attention, rather than just being a name on the page.
 
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Jennyn52779 | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 6, 2018 |
Interesting look at sexism, harassment in early Hollywood. The list of key players was especially helpful in keeping everyone straight. Particularly those who were not quite as,well known. Definitely worth the read if you like old,Hollywood.
 
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aramisTdawg | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 5, 2018 |
Obviously well researched and an interesting read. However, the inconsistent tone of the book was frustrating to me. It sometimes read as if written though a critical feminist lens while at other times seemed to justify behaviors on the basis of the persons gender or unknowingly defend the patriarchal ideals it other times appears to condemn. Read for a fun and interesting insight into early Hollywood but don’t hurt yourself trying to read it with a critical eye.
 
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frankiejones | 22 andra recensioner | Nov 5, 2018 |
Karina Longworth's _Seduction: Sex, Lies and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood_ is an unrelenting, pyrotechnical display of the enigmatic personae (actor, producer, entrepreneur, financier, engineer, aviator, womanizer, addict, recluse, et al.) that we know, or perhaps more accurately, imagine as Howard Hughes.

Names from the book's 'Cast of Characters', like Homer's catalog of ships in The Iliad, set the tone of this glamorous entertaining tragicomedy: Jean Harlow, Ida Lupino, Ginger Rogers, Katherine Hepburn, Jane Russell, Ava Gardner, Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, Gloria Vanderbilt, Yvonne De Carlo, Lana Turner, Gina Lollobrigida.

Longworth puts it succinctly. "This is a book about a few of the dozens of women who encountered Howard Hughes in Hollywood between the mid-1920s and early 1960s, whose lives and careers were impacted by their relationship wwith him. Some of these women were involved remantically with Hughes, others weren't, but all found the course of their careers marked by his presence." (p. 9)

Longworth spent days at the Texas State Archives in Austin perusing The Howard Hughes Files and in Las Vegas at UNLV looking at its Hughes papers. This is a thoughtful, entertaining book.
 
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chuck_ralston | 22 andra recensioner | Oct 31, 2018 |
Karina Longworth is the author of the podcast "You Must Remember This" that chronicles stories of the early days of Hollywood. This book is in the same vein and focuses on Howard Hughes' years as a playboy and Hollywood producer. The book highlights many lessor and, these days, unknown starlets of Hollywood's early years.

Extremely well researched, this book paints a fascinating picture of early Hollywood and the people who inhabited it.
 
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etxgardener | 22 andra recensioner | Oct 30, 2018 |
Karina Longworth's Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood actually tells the much broader story of the eccentric millionaire mogul's life and times, rather than just the seamy and salacious aspects of his often obsessive and compulsive relationships with dozens of actresses. The title suggests a much narrower focus than the book actually delivers, as Longworth delves in detail into Hughes's many business enterprises and activities including the Hughes Tool company, his aviation exploits, his film production company, the purchase and ownership of RKO Studios, and his testimony before the House Un-American Activities Committee. This expansive approach gives the book considerable heft and substance, but simultaneous distracts from what is ostensibly its main thrust. But there is still a great deal of the promised sex and seduction laced throughout this biography. His sordid and shameful treatment of women is painstakingly detailed: all the abusive relationships, the affairs, the lies, the obsessions, the marriages, the divorces, and later in his life the virtual collection, imprisonment, (albeit in well appointed accommodations) and inevitable discarding of dozens of young and naïve would-be starlets hopelessly hoping to become Hollywood stars under his ultimately non-existant tutelage and attention. Longworth has ably chronicled Hughes's bizarre and shameful treatment of women, but overall the book would have been more effective if she had trimmed away some of the extraneous biographical material.
 
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ghr4 | 22 andra recensioner | Oct 26, 2018 |
Well researched (over 40 pages of biographies and notes listed ) biography of Howard Hughes. With all the attention today on the power of men in Hollywood this book clearly reminds us this is not a new problem. Interesting description of his childhood that I was not aware of ,even having read other books on Hughes. I would recommend this book to any one interested in the early Hollywood days.
 
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loraineo | 22 andra recensioner | Oct 23, 2018 |
I really like Karina Longworth's podcast You Must Remember This. unfortunately I find hh very boring.is it me, is it him or is it the writing.
 
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mahallett | 22 andra recensioner | Jun 10, 2019 |
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