Unless we’re a part of the Psychic Friends Network (does that service even still exist???) we never really know what life has in store for us, do we? And maybe that’s a good thing. Take me, for instance. If anyone had told me 30 years ago that I’d be moving to Los Angeles, where I would end up making a name for myself as the author of novels set during Hollywood’s golden era, I would have laughed in their face. “HA!” I would have said. “You’re drunk. Go home.” And yet here I am, doing exactly that—and nobody is more surprised than me.
Or take the hero of my new novel, All the Gin Joints. Luke Valenti from Brooklyn, New York has a whole bunch of reasons to say no when his favorite aunt asks him to return a stolen prop from Warner Bros.’ The Maltese Falcon. It’s the last thing he wants to do, but when he says yes, it propels him into a future he never saw coming.
I am very excited to let you know that
ALL THE GIN JOINTS: a novel of World War II Hollywood
Book 1 in the Hollywood Home Front trilogy
is now available.
Luke Valenti has never fit into his swaggering family of overbearing loudmouths. Even worse, the world is at war again and Uncle Sam has stamped his draft notice “4-F” — the ultimate rejection — because of a rare eye condition that has left Luke unable to see colors. So instead, he dreams of escaping Brooklyn for the beaches of Montauk.
That is, until a stolen prop from The Maltese Falcon pitches him down a reluctant path to Hollywood. Luke is tasked with returning it to Warner Brothers, where Humphrey Bogart is about to embark on the movie that will launch his career into the stratosphere: Casablanca.
But the production is chaotic. Bogie is desperately unhappy in his marriage. Ingrid Bergman feels lost and alone. The script is constantly rewritten, and the overbearing director hates that damned song. Nobody thinks this movie will amount to anything—except the guy who sees in black and white. Finally, Luke has found his way in.
But studio stuntman Gus O’Farrell wants him out again: Luke has replaced him as the star’s stand-in, and Gus is having none of it. Bogie warns Luke to keep his friends close and his enemies closer. It’s great advice, but when a chance to reverse his 4-F status presents itself, Luke needs to learn that distinguishing friends from enemies can be a tricky business in a land where artifice blurs reality like murky shadows in a back alley.
From the author of the Hollywood’s Garden of Allah novels comes a story set against the making of one of the most beloved films of all time—and the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
ALL THE GIN JOINTS is now available through these retailers:
Book Depository (free shipping worldwide)
Audiobook – COMING SOON
You can read Chapter 1 on my website.
Also by Martin Turnbull:
Book 1 – The Garden on Sunset
Book 2 – The Trouble with Scarlett
Book 3 – Citizen Hollywood
Book 4 – Searchlights and Shadows
Book 5 – Reds in the Beds
Book 6 – Twisted Boulevard
Book 7 – Tinseltown Confidential
Book 8 – City of Myths
Book 9 – Closing Credits
Connect with Martin Turnbull: