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LA Connections: Power, Obsession, Murder, Revenge Mass Market Paperback – May 22, 2001

4.0 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

There have been many imitators, but only Jackie Collins can tell you what really goes on in the fastest lane of all. From Beverly Hills bedrooms to a raunchy prowl along the streets of Hollywood; from glittering rock parties and concerts to stretch limos and the mansions of the power brokers—Jackie Collins chronicles the real truth from the inside looking out.

Jackie Collins has been called a “raunchy moralist” by the late director Louis Malle and “Hollywood’s own Marcel Proust” by Vanity Fair magazine. With over 400 million copies of her books sold in more than forty countries, and with some twenty-seven New York Times bestsellers to her credit, Jackie Collins is one of the world’s top-selling novelists. She is known for giving her readers an unrivalled insider’s knowledge of Hollywood and the glamorous lives and loves of the rich, famous, and infamous! “I write about real people in disguise,” she says. “If anything, my characters are toned down—the truth is much more bizarre.”

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter One

From: Power

Madison Castelli did not particularly enjoy covering Hollywood stories. Lifestyles of the rich and decadent was not her thing -- which is exactly why her editor, Victor Simons, had insisted she was the right person for the assignment. "You're not into all that Hollywood bullshit," he'd said. "You don't want anything from the so-called power elite, which makes you the perfect journalist to get me the real inside story on Mr. Super-Power, Freddie Leon. Besides, you're beautiful, so he'll pay attention."

Ha! Madison thought ruefully as she boarded an American Airlines flight to L.A. I'm so beautiful that three months ago, David, my live-in love of two years, went out for a pack of cigarettes and never came back.

What he did do was leave her a cowardly note all about how he couldn't deal with commitment and would never be able to make her happy. Five weeks later she'd found out he'd married his childhood sweetheart -- a vapid blonde with huge boobs and a serious overbite.

So much for avoiding commitment.

Madison was twenty-nine years old and extremely attractive, although she played her good looks down by wearing functional clothes and barely any makeup. But try as she might, nothing could disguise her almond-shaped eyes, sharply defined cheekbones, seductive lips, smooth olive skin, and black unruly hair she usually wore pulled back in a severe ponytail. Not to mention her lithe, five-foot-eight-inch body, with full breasts, narrow waist and long dancer's legs.

Madison did not consider herself beautiful. Her idea of good looks was her mother, Stella -- a statuesque blonde whose dreamy eyes and quivering lips reminded most people of Marilyn Monroe.

Looks-wise, Madison took after her father, Michael, the best-looking fifty-eight-year-old in Connecticut. She'd also inherited his steely determination and undeniable charm -- two admirable qualities that had not hindered her rise to success as a well-respected writer of revealing profiles of the rich, notorious and powerful.

Madison loved what she did -- going for the right angle, discovering the hidden secrets of people in the public eye. Politicians and super-rich business tycoons were her favorite interviews. Movie stars, sports personalities and Hollywood moguls were low on her list. She didn't regard herself as a killer, although she did write with searing honesty, sometimes upsetting the people she wrote about, who were usually sheltered in an all-enveloping cocoon of protective P.R.

Too bad if they didn't like it; she was merely telling the truth.

Settling into her first-class window seat, she glanced around the cabin, spotting Bo Deacon, a well-known TV host with an equally well-known drug habit. Bo did not look well; puffy-faced and slackjawed, he still managed to come to life when the cameras rolled on his popular late-night talk show.

Madison hoped that the seat next to her would remain vacant, but it was not to be. At the last moment a breathy, busty blonde in a micro black leather dress was escorted aboard by two starstruck airline reps who practically carried her to her seat. Madison recognized the girl as Salli T. Turner, the current darling of the tabloids. Salli was the star of Teach!, a half-hour weekly TV sitcom in which she played a comely swimming teacher who visited a different glamorous mansion every week, causing havoc and saving lives -- all the while dressed in a minuscule one-piece black rubber swimsuit, which only served to enhance her pneumatic breasts, twenty-inch waist and endless legs.

"Wow!" Salli exclaimed, collapsing into her seat and fluffing out her mane of blond curls. "Just made it!"

"Are you okay, Miss Turner?" asked anxious airline rep number one.

"What can I get you?" asked overeager airline rep number two.

Both men were bug-eyed, staring down her ample cleavage as if they'd never seen anything like it before. And they probably haven't, Madison thought.

"Everything's hunky-dory, guys," Salli said, favoring them with a toothy grin. "My husband's meeting me in L.A. If I'd missed the flight he would've been blue-assed pissed!"

"I can believe that," said airline rep number one, eyes still bugging.

"Me, too!" agreed the other man.

Madison buried her head in Newsweek -- the last thing she needed was a conversation with this airhead. She vaguely heard the flight attendant asking the men to leave so they could prepare for takeoff; then, shortly after, the big plane began taxiing down the runway.

Without warning, Salli suddenly clutched Madison's arm, causing her to almost drop her magazine.

"I hate flying," Salli squeaked, big blue eyes blinking rapidly. "I mean, it's not exactly flying I hate, more like crashing."

Carefully Madison prised the girl's fingers off her arm. "Close your eyes, take a deep breath and slowly count to a hundred," she advised. "I'll let you know when we're airborne."

"Gee, thanks," Salli said gratefully. "Didn't think of doing that."

Madison frowned. Clearly this was going to be a long flight. Why couldn't she be stuck next to someone more interesting?

She folded her magazine and gazed out of the window as the plane took off. Unlike Salli, she loved flying. The sudden rush of speed, that exhilarating feeling of excitement when the wheels left the ground, the initial ascent -- it always gave her a thrill, however many times she'd done it.

Salli sat silently beside her, eyes squeezed tightly shut, pouty lips slowly mouthing numbers.

By the time she opened her eyes they were in the air. "Radical shit!" Salli exclaimed, turning to Madison. "You're amazing!"

"Nothing to it," Madison murmured.

"No, really," Salli insisted. "Your advice actually worked!"

"I'm glad," Madison said, wishing Miss Rubber Suit (she'd seen the show once -- it was titillating trash) would keep her eyes closed for the entire trip.

Rescue arrived in the form of Bo Deacon, who came ambling over holding a glass of Scotch. "Salli, my darling!" he exclaimed. "You look absolutely edible."

"Oh, hi Bo," Salli said guilelessly. "Are you on this plane?"

Smart question, Madison thought wryly. It's so nice to be traveling with intellectuals.

"Yeah, honey, I'm sitting over there," he said, gesturing across the aisle. "Got some old bag next to me. Whyn't we try getting her to trade places?"

Salli fluttered her long fake eyelashes. "How are your ratings going?" she asked, as if that would be the deciding factor on whether she changed seats or not.

"Hardly as hot as yours, babe," he leered. "Whyn't I go back and ask the old bag to move?"

"I'm kinda comfortable where I am," Salli said.

"Don't be silly," Bo said. "We should sit together, that way we can talk about your next appearance on my show. Last time you were on we got better ratings than Howard."

Salli giggled, pleased with the compliment. "I did Howard's E! cable show in New York," she said, small pink tongue licking her jammy lips.

"He's sooo rude, but cute with it."

"You're the first broad I've heard call Howard Stern cute," Bo said, shaking his head.

"Well, he is," Salli said. "He's kind of big and gangly, and he's always talking about his little dick. My guess is he's really got a whopper!"

Madison realized she was actually sitting next to a real live cliché -- the definitive Hollywood blonde. If she recounted this exchange to any of her New York friends, they wouldn't believe her.

"You know what?" Madison said, leaning forward, speaking directly to Bo. "If it'll help out, I can change places with you."

Bo noticed her for the first time. "Hey, little lady, that's very sweet of you," he said, putting on his voice that said "I'm a big star, but I can actually be nice to real people."

"Little lady?" Was he kidding?

"On one condition," Salli interrupted.

"What's that, honey?" Bo said.

"I've got to sit next to this woman when we land. She's the greatest. She got me through takeoff. She's like some kind of, you know, magical medicine man."

Bo raised an eyebrow. "Really?" he said, taking another look at Madison. "You one of those broads with special powers, honey? Maybe you should come on my show."

"Thanks for the offer, Mr. Deacon," Madison answered coolly. "I have a hunch you should stick with Max the chimp."

Bo winked. "So you watch the show, huh?"

When I can't sleep, she wanted to say. When I've seen every old movie, and Letterman and Leno are in repeats, and I'm absolutely desperate. "Sometimes," she said, with a pleasant smile, gathering her things, getting up and moving across the aisle to Bo's vacant seat.

The woman he'd referred to as an old bag was an attractive businesswoman in her forties diligently working on her laptop.

"Hi," Madison said. "I'm switching places with Mr. Deacon. Do you mind?"

The woman raised her eyes. "The pleasure is all mine," she said. "I actually thought I'd have to talk to him."

They both laughed.

Madison grinned. This was more her kind of traveling partner.

Copyright © 1998 by Chances, Inc.


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Product Details

  • Series: L.A. Connections
  • Mass Market Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket (May 22, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671036645
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671036645
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,009,455 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Ratmammy VINE VOICE on January 19, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
L.A. CONNECTIONS is actually 4 separate books combined into one paperback. Each segment reads as a separate book, as they were originally published as a 4-part serial.
The main story line throughout all 4 segments is a series of murders that affects in some way all the main characters. There is Kristin, the expensive call-girl who is trying to support her sister who is in a coma; there is Sally, the big chested super star who is really a down-to-earth simple gal who happened to become a celebrity; there is Madison, the journalist, who accidentally meets Sally and finds herself involved in the coverage of a murder; and a host of other fascinating characters, all bigger than life. And in between the murders there is plenty of sex, violence, and other trash that keeps the pace moving.
What I like about Jackie Collins books are the characters. They are never dull and are always living on the edge, no matter what their profession. L.A. CONNECTIONS was no exception. The problem with this book was that it read like 4 separate books, when i had been expecting one. It also seemed to have an abrupt ending as if Ms Collins wanted to get this book over with. This is not to say I didnt enjoy the book. I did, and it was fast reading from start to finish. But I think this book could have been better, if the ending was done right, and the 4 separate novels (Power,Obsession, Murder,and Revenge) were re-written to be published properly as a single book.
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By A Customer on June 16, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
A lot of potential went to waste with this series. I get the feeling she sort of made it up as she went along. Well, ok, maybe she does that in other cases, but it shouldn't read that way. The character based on Pamela Anderson Lee was the best thing about it, though of course she's not around for the whole thing. But I figured out who the killer was by the end of the second installment, and I also figured out who the first, second, and so on murder victims would be. There used to be a time when characters in her novels would suddenly meet an unpleasant fate exactly when you least expect it. I'm reminded of the key character in one of her previous, vastly superior novels (forget the character's name or the title, so it won't be a spoiler) is on her way to an important event and suddenly gets killed in a head-on collision, just like that. You totally didn't see it coming, and that's one of the things I love most about her writing. Also, you think these could have been great cliff hangers. There have been times in the past when I was reading her novels and you couldn't tear me away from reading them with a crowbar. Ms. Collins could have used that to her advantage here, but didn't--this series was just tired and rehashed, though it could have been worse. Once you read her better books, such as the Lucky saga, you get a taste of how totally brilliant and massively entertaining she can be. Then you get something like this and it's so dissapointing in comparison.
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I started reading Jackie Collins the summer I turned 18. L.A. Connections : Power Obsession Murder Revenge is intruging,dangerous and exciting at the same time. The characters came to life and captivated me throughout the series. Truely a good read...Fantastic...Sensational....
From one of Jackie's Biggest readers!
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I didn't even know Ms. Collins had written this book. I was browing my local supermarket and discovered it. The story begins interestingly enough, and the suspense sort of carries you through the book. However, Ms. Collins did not fully develop characters to their full potential. For instance, Cole, the gay character who was supposed to know so many secret details about the players of Hollywood, was never "fleshed" out regarding his knowledge of said people. The ending was rushed too much. She tied everything up so quickly that she didn't go into enough detail about the main characters and how they got to the ending point.
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By rina on March 19, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the beginning to a series of stories involving Madison Castelli. The stories were good (this book is three stories in one book) involving the same characters. If you like continuing stories (like the Lucky Santangelo series) then you will like this book. However, I did find the "Lucky" series better than the "Madison" ones. The series starts with this book and then there is Lethal Seduction and lastly Deadly Embrace.
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By A Customer on July 7, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have to admit it is not one of her best books, but I enjoyed this one. It was a fast read, and I liked most of the characters. Definitely worth the money for the single book, considering the expense of buying the 4 individual books. (I hate when authors do that)!!
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By A Customer on November 8, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I enjoyed reading this series. Borrowed the books from the library and was only able to get three of them and went to a used book store to get the copy the library was missing. I had to get the copy so I could finish the series. It was worth the running around. I donated the copy to the library so everybody else could enjoy the series.
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I thought this books is pretty good. Since it was written to be 4 separate books what i didnt like was that in the beggining of everybooks she would talk about the one that i just finished. Overall her characters were well illustrated in my mind by the way that jackie collins had intended.
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