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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 31 July 2015
A farmboy from Illinois, Scotty Bowers headed for Los Angeles after his demob from the Marines at the end of World War Two. Working the evening shift at a gas station on Hollywood Boulevard, he was soon running a lucrative sideline as a "call-boy" (he calls it "tricking") with well-heeled Angelinos, most of them in the movie business - both men and women (he claims to prefer straight sex). As well as turning tricks himself, he also set up many another hard-up young man (or woman) with movie people great and small. Then as now on Sunset Strip, straight guys willingly turned gay tricks for a few dollars of beer money.

It's all yesteryear tittle-tattle, mostly set during the Fifties and Sixties. Everybody mentioned is safely dead and unable to start libel proceedings. But there is some juicy stuff here: threesomes, bondage, pool-party orgies. Somehow we've always sensed that our stage and screen idols have feet of clay; Scotty Bowers wants us to know that a proportion of their off-screen time is spent wallowing in mud.

Many names here are familiar to the gay gossips: Noel Coward, Montgomery Clift, James Dean. I was only occasionally surprised by his revelations: moving on from deceased Hollywood 'royalty' to deposed royals, he says he fixed the Duke of Windsor up with call-boys and Wallis with girls. At a time when pornography was illegal in the US (hard to imagine, isn't it?) he arranged a private showing of ex-King Farouk's extensive personal collection for Dr Alfred Kinsey and his fellow researchers.

Not all the scandal is sexual: Rita Hayworth was too stingy to buy her out-of-work brother new tyres for his beat-up truck. And Scotty reminds us just how terrible was William Holden's decline (one of the non-gay clients) into the farther reaches of alcoholism.

FULL SERVICE is written (ghost-written) in a gushing Louella Parsons prose style straight out of the "fanzines"; gushing enough to read at times like Barbara Cartland (who would churn in her urn at the comparison, I'm sure). I feel slightly ashamed to have wasted a few hours reading this tawdry drivel, but - oh dear - it's an undeniably compelling read. That said, I did find myself wondering how much of it is the sleazy truth and how much is money-minting fantasy.

[Reviewer is the author of THE BEXHILL MISSILE CRISIS]
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 15 March 2013
Though it seems quite unbelievable all the stories can be confirmed in someway with existing rumours, although of course that could still mean his story is fabricated. But Gore Vidal spoke out before his death to confirm that every story was indeed true. It is a strange book and one does wonder if he did do nearly everything for "alturistic" purposes as he claims. From most other perspectives it would appear that here was a sexually abused child that grew up into a damaged person but "Scotty" appears happy enough with his life although I dare say his poor first wife Betty might not say the same. I found it odd that he made pains to point out many times that he was not gay but seemed to spend the whole book having sex with (famous) men. I did start to wonder is every actor gay? Probably the best idea would be to assume they are until proven otherwise ;)
It got to the point where it became quite repetitive and some stories were just plain not nice, like the Charles Laughton anecdotes. Maybe I'm a bit square but that fair turned my stomach.
If you have idealistic views of a fairy (no pun intended) tale Hollywood, read it and have your illusions shattered.
God only knows what goes on today!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 May 2013
I had expected much of this book, however the central character comes across as shallow, and self-obsessed. Much of the revelations are already well known, and some of the details of half remembered "stars" are quite nauseating. Makes Hollywood sound like not much fun at all.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 21 March 2012
People who have reviewed this book seem to be up in arms about it's contents, my problem is that is tedious, badly 'written' and a trial to read for more than a few minutes at a time. One person appears outraged that its subjects are all dead, have they not heard of the libel laws? Mr Bowers and I share a mutual acquaintance and I have it on good authority that he (or his publisher) removed all references to the living to await Volume 2, when it will be legal to include them, or the book would have been twice as long. There's no point in getting upset about the contents of a book simply because you don't want to believe them.

Mr Bowers is well known in Los Angeles and the fact that Gore Vidal is willing to provide a 'puff' for the cover adds to it's credibilty, his fastidiousness about the English language make that a surprise however.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 25 March 2012
Of course all of them are dead. One should not speak ill of the dead... but that calls for perspective if what is written is true. On the one hand an interesting book which at times beggars belief, and at other times causes writer's cringe. It seems Scotty had a lot of friends, a lot of good friends and a lot of very good friends; much of Hollywood. Most people have acquaintances, work colleagues, friends, and a tiny circle of good friends. If his very good friends were alive I would hazard a guess that would say they knew Scotty and would not go much further. That during his life he provided the STARS contact with, must have been at his own word, THOUSANDS of young men and women for sex and for that service alone he did not get a cent... just wanted to make people happy, is part of the belief shaking. He 'tricked', that is had rampant sex with hundreds of celebrated men, thousands, even tens of thousands, and a lot of women... but of course preferred women - even unto his sixties and even in his seventies was rarin' to go, is definately interesting but belief shakes once more. He begins with servicing what appears to be the entire Roman Catholic priesthood of a large city and groups of gamblers - and this before pubity; he then goes to war and sees action and is close to death - then returns to civilian life, apparently without too much trauma and after meeting up with Walter Pigeon he does not look back - a life of constant sex, and later bar tending and constant sex. Well - like I said, an interesting book which indeed oft times beggars belief... oh - and the writing is stilted and the professional writer who assisted should be ashamed. Needed an editor. But an usual, though often a turgid and word repetitive read.
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on 23 January 2015
A few bits of fun gossip here but also much that reads like the ravings of a fantasist. I don't believe that he pimped for all of Hollywood and took no money. There is much too much about Bowers himself and "frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn". He is a bore. Get a cheap used copy and look for the juicy bits. This was a big disappointment. Much less here than the blurps promise.
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on 25 March 2012
A book which somehow manages to make a `seedy` subject readable. The author comes across as a nice enough fellow, but one who is fairly self-centered and sex obsessed. It has been critised as a book of `fiction`, which I feel is unjustified.If you are interested in some aspects of the lives of the `old` film stars it may be of interest to others, but in general is a bit of a none event.
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on 22 October 2014
Too 'Twee' for words! Utter rubbish, badly written, confused, repetitive, unbelievable content - sets out to shock and scandalise but succeeds in neither. Avoid this rubbish like the plague, it is an extraordinarily boring book, a waste of your, time, your money and your expectations!
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 31 March 2012
some people, well..a LOT of people, here seem to be extremely upset that some of their favorite hollywood myths get smashed in this book :-)..;well, I have no doubt what mr Bowers tells is true and that what he COULD have told is even more upsetting for a lot of so called fans....there you go folks, hard to stomach that Tyrone Powers liked poop sex with boys or that Spencer Tracy actually DID prefer a dick over Katharine Hepburn ? :-)..such is life....but you can still believe in fairy tales if you want to....like religion you can take it or leave it and ignore the truth if that makes you feel better but facts are facts...need a refill ? do cum again !:-)
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on 24 February 2015
Being interested in Hollywood and it's past stars I thought this would be a great buy for me. Unfortunately this was such a disappointment - I found it extremely hard to believe Scotty Bowers' stories - so not a good buy (for me anyway!)
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