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Hollywood Plays for Keeps: A Mystery (Veronica Kennicott Series Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Dale E. Manolakas
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Murder on the Champ de Mars
"[Cara Black] is on to a good thing: each of her novels is set in a colorful Parisian neighborhood—and there are a lot of them. The cumulative result of reading this addictive series is a sort of mini-tour of the city, as seen through a filter of fictional murder ... Leduc is always a reliable and charming guide to the city's lesser-known corners." —The Seattle Times

Book Description

☆╮✩ ╰☆╮MYSTERY LOVERS, LOOK NO FURTHER!╰☆╮✩ ╰☆╮

EXPERIENCE THE SHOCKING, RAW REALITY OF THE ACTING WORLD—a contrary world where the smaller the stakes the more deadly the competition, especially at the seedy, haunted Valentine Theatre. With the studio system in Hollywood replaced by the small theatre training ground, the “play’s the thing” as actors claw their way from the small Valentine Theatre to the big screen. Punctuated with dark humor and provocative satire, has-beens and wannabes mingle with stars under the spotlights where sex is currency and murder lurks in the wings! With opening night looming and careers at stake, the multiple rich characters stop at nothing, including murder, to win their fifteen minutes of fame. Amateur actor and aspiring author Veronica Kennicott fights to stop the Valentine murders.
★★★★★ MULTI-FIVE STAR REVIEWS! “I missed most of a good night’s sleep.” “. . . beginning to the end . . . suspenseful and captivating.” “Spell binding.” “The author truly excels in creating complex, fully realized characters and superior, entertaining dialogue.” ADD TO CART!
~~Second in Series and New Release~~DEATH SETS SAIL~~


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

TOP 100 AMAZON BEST SELLER'S RANK

After a life time of writing poetry, books, nonfiction, and legal documents, it was author Ray Bradbury's friendship and encouragement that finally inspired Dale E. Manolakas to pursue writing as a career. He taught her that the characters wrote the book--she didn't. Raised just outside Los Angeles by a surgeon father and a homemaker-author mother, Dale E. Manolakas had always aspired to an acting career, but also had to make a living.

Dale E. Manolakas earned her B.A. from the University of California at Los Angeles, and M.A., M.S., Ph.D. and J.D. degrees from the University of Southern California. She is a member of the California Bar, had the privilege of clerking for The Honorable Arthur L. Alarcón at the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, was a litigator in two major Los Angeles law firms, and a senior appellate attorney at the California Court of Appeals, as well as an Administrative Law Judge.

Before that, she taught at the high school, adult school, and university levels, and holds a public administrative services credential. In addition, she has pursued her passion for acting, primarily on the stage, but also in film and television. She is a member of both Actors' Equity and SAG-AFTRA. She also has raised three very independent daughters and lives with her husband, a retired attorney, in an otherwise animal-free environment in California.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2974 KB
  • Print Length: 525 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1628050012
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00GYM64BW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,249 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved Cruising the Hollywood Scene March 18, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
After reading Dale Manolakas' first novel, Lethal Lawyers, I thought I'd read this novel as well. I was amazed that Ms. Manolakas could depict the "theater" in as much detail and drama (no pun intended) as she did the "law." A very versatile scene setter, this author is also excellent at introducing quirky, well-drawn characters. She doesn't hold back on the villains and her narrator in revealing both laudable and nasty personality traits, all told with a good amount of wry humor. The unfortunate part about reading the story is that I missed most of a good night's sleep. I was not able to put the book down, waiting to see if the show would go on and justice served.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Novel on all levels! A Must Read! February 1, 2014
By MEK
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Spell binding - if you want to know what the actor's world is in Hollywood, this is your roadmap. Very entertaining and illuminating, this intriguing novel focuses on the small theatre world of Hollywood and its inhabitants striving for movie stardom or hanging on as they sink into oblivion. The author not only captures the setting of that world with an authentic voice obviously born of experience, she creates fully-developed characters about whom we come to care. She is particularly good in using dialogue and sly, sarcastic humor to advance her plot and characters. And the characters are unique, interesting, and driven by universal human emotions as they engage in devious and sometimes terrible behavior to get what they want.

This is a dark portrayal of a part of Hollywood seldom the subject of novels, but reminiscent in tone and quality of novels like Raymond Chandler’s “The Little Sister” or Budd Schulberg’s “What Makes Sammy Run.”

I could go on, but let me just conclude by saying that “Hollywood Plays for Keeps” appears to be the first of a series the author is writing centering around her fascinating main character and narrator. I hope so, as I truly enjoyed this book and am giving it 5 stars.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By Realist
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A real page-turner! The prose grabs the reader by the collar, giving you an intimate look at Hollywood actors, those struggling to make it in the "industry" and those merely trying to survive with some dignity on their way down. This book was absolutely spell binding - very entertaining and illuminating. I learned so much re the small theatre world of Hollywood and felt like I was living it with the main character. Completely captured the world of the mature woman....in any profession! The author's voice is unique and her fascinating characters have all the human frailties we love to hate.

This is a dark portrayal of a part of Hollywood seldom the subject of novels.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This novel shines a light on the shabby realities of the marginal small theaters of Hollywood. The author truly excels in creating complex, fully realized characters and superior, entertaining dialogue. In a very real way, the characters are the plot. Indeed, the major venue, the Valentine Theater, is itself almost a "character." Egos, backstabbing, no-holds barred competition rule in this world, even though the stakes appear so small. I will be re-reading Hollywood Plays for Keeps for sure. I could tell on a first reading that there was much more to glean on further readings. And there are very few books I would choose to read a second time these days.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shocking look at seamy side of Hollywood February 15, 2014
By gomw
Format:Paperback
Riveting story. I had to resist skipping to the end to find out what happened to Veronica, an amateur writer and marignal actress. I wanted to jump in the story and knock some heads together. The setting of all the characters at the bottom of the Holllywood setting Is both sad and disgusting. The story of the preparation of a play to be put on at a rat infested, run down theater was worth the read. The murder mystery and suspence was frosting on the cake. Ms Manolakas is a gifted writer with a superb talent for putting you in the setting. Warning - don't start reading until you have time!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Debut Novel February 21, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I enjoy a good mystery, especially one with an interesting plot, characters, and dialogue. I especially enjoyed the novel’s setting: the small theatre world of Hollywood, a world unfamiliar to me but very fascinating, especially since we are constantly bombarded in the news with the other side of Hollywood. Who knew theater existed in Hollywood, who ever gave it a thought. The author indicates that this is the first of a series involving her character Veronica Kennicott. I certainly look forward to reading the next.
This is also my first Kindle book, it won't be my last.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who knew the small theater world could be this vicious! October 13, 2014
By Reader
Format:Kindle Edition
Hollywood Plays for Keeps explores a milieu little known to most of us, the world of small theaters and, apparently, smaller people in Hollywood. The characters are rich and complex, even when one doesn't like them, and the story is one of greed and rapacity in all of their dimensions. Yet it is told with snappy dialogue, often humorous, albeit dark. Think of it as a modern cousin to Nathanael West's depiction of Depression-era Hollywood, "Day of the Locust." I definitely recommend it. It will leave you thinking long after you have finished it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't Put It Down! June 11, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
This was exactly the book escape I needed. From the first page on, I was hooked and couldn't wait for the opportunity to pick it up again. I took this book on a road trip to see family and found myself taking breaks on the road to read a chapter or two. I also carried it with me while visiting my family and running errands. I would stay in the car and read while they shopped!

Looking forward to many more!
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More About the Author

TOP 100 LEGAL THRILLER AUTHOR
After a lifetime of writing poetry, books, nonfiction, and legal documents, it was author Ray Bradbury's friendship and encouragement that finally inspired Dale E. Manolakas to pursue writing as a career. He taught her that the characters wrote the book--she didn't. Raised just outside Los Angeles by a surgeon father and a homemaker-author mother, Dale E. Manolakas had always aspired to an acting career, but also had to make a living.

Dale E. Manolakas earned her B.A. from the University of California at Los Angeles, and M.A., M.S., Ph.D. and J.D. degrees from the University of Southern California. She is a member of the California Bar, had the privilege of clerking for The Honorable Arthur L. Alarcón at the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, was a litigator in two major Los Angeles law firms, and a senior appellate attorney at the California Court of Appeals, as well as an Administrative Law Judge.

Before that, she taught at the high school, adult school, and university levels, and holds a public administrative services credential. In addition, she has pursued her passion for acting, primarily on the stage, but also in film and television. She is a member of both Actors' Equity and SAG-AFTRA. She also has raised three very independent daughters and lives with her husband, a retired attorney, in an otherwise animal-free environment in California.

DaleManolakas.com




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