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Valley Of The Dolls (VMC) Paperback – 24 Nov 2003

4.6 out of 5 stars 79 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Virago; New Ed edition (24 Nov. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1860498876
  • ISBN-13: 978-1860498879
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 3.1 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,443 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

The kind of book most of its readers could not put down. I, for one, could not . . . For me reading Valley of the Dolls was like reading a very, very long, absolutely delicious gossip column . . . Magnetic (Nora Ephron)

Valley Of The Dolls remains a brave, bold, angry and, yes, definitely a feminist book. All that, and still about the most fun you can have without a prescription (Julie Burchill Guardian)

Jackie, it seemed, understood by instinct that her readers were ready for the raw side of love . . . for a franker sexuality and a tougher kind of story-for romance with tears and oral sex (Michael Korda The New Yorker)

Valley of the Dolls remains a pop-culture touchstone: a gleefully salacious story of friendship, sex, backstabbing and pills . . . Now celebrating its 50th anniversary, the tawdry tale of Anne Welles, Jennifer North and Neely O'Hara hasn't lost its punch . . . One of the most talked-about books of all time (New York Times)

50 years later, it's still spot on. The world's changed immensely but the climb to the top is still a tough one (Michael Kors)

Much imitated, but never bettered (Daily Telegraph)

About the most fun you can have without a prescription! (Julie Burchill)

Decades ahead of its time...Mesmerizing...The equation of emotional dependencies with drug addiction in one comprehensive personality disorder is, if anything, MORE CHIC TODAY. (VILLAGE VOICE)

Jackie, it seemed, understood by instinct that her readers were ready for the RAW SIDE OF LOVE...for a franker sexuality and a tougher kind of story - for romance with tears AND oral sex. (Michael Korda, THE NEW YORKER)

Book Description

* The ground-breaking pop-culture classic and one of the most famous bestsellers of all time!

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4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Doesn't it seem like the best books are the ones that you've had on your wish list forever and just seemed to keep skipping over? I've had Jacqueline Susann's `VALLEY OF THE DOLLS' on my Amazon wish list for years and never got around to actually ordering it but I decided to start of the New Year with something different and this cult classic was just what the doctor ordered!
Anne, the wide-eyed girl from Lawrenceville escapes her doomed future as a housewife by moving to New York City in hopes of finding a life for herself. But no sooner than she arrives and gets settled in her new job and home does she end up on the cover of every newspaper and the talk of the town. But over the years Anne learns that the life she'd always dreamed of wasn't all that it was cracked up to be.
Neely is seventeen with all the enthusiasm her little body can handle. A performer in vaudeville since childhood Neely has what it takes to be a star. She is the ultimate triple threat she dances, sings like no other and can act too! Inevitably, by the age of twenty-one Neely becomes the biggest star around; unfortunately her ego grows just as big as her rising star. And with the help of her red, yellow and green "dolls" washed down with a little scotch nothing can stop her.
Jennifer has the face and the body to go far, however all she really wants is love. But unfortunately love doesn't pay the bills. And after a few failed marriages to some of Hollywood's most prominent players Jennifer realizes that her body is her ticket to stardom. Soon she becomes Europe's biggest star... because in Europe anything goes.
I absolutely could not put this book down.
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Format: Paperback
Initially I found the book a little dull and thought it was just old-fashioned chick lit, but actually it's really good and addresses a lot of issues that women have to deal with today including careers, being financially independent, when to have children and how to protect a man's fragile ego if you earn more or have a better job than him.

Three women - Anne, Jennifer and Neely - meet up and become friends in New York in the mid-1940s and the book traces their friendship and their lives through the 1950s and 1960s. All the women work in the entertainment industry and go on to be really successful in their fields, but the success doesn't bring happiness and they all wind up relying on pills to keep them awake and thin, put them to sleep or simply to help them forget how lonely they are.

Sadly, the men always seem to disappoint and this book paints a grim picutre of them, but I suppose that's how some women saw men in the 1950s and early 1960s. In Valley of the Dolls, the men are weak, vain, shallow and reluctant to commit or even be loyal to the women they profess to love.

Most of the time they are more concerned with having a pretty, young and thin women hanging off their arms and off their every word than being with an equal. Even Lyon who is younger, more intelligent and has seen more of the world and should know a little better is just as bad.

The book is a sad reminder that yet again, it's really hard for a woman to have it all - a good job, a good man and children. You can only get a couple of those at most but not all three!

Anyway, it's a good book and very readable!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I watched the film of the book with Sharon Tate in and so wanted to buy the book because I think the storyline of stress in the entertainment business, drugs and generally 60s life are very interesting subject matters. I haven't been disappointed, however, it isn't a Charlotte Bronte in terms of writing style! Slighty trashy but it's a good read for someone who likes the film/subject matter, or without that, it is a good read!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this in the 60's when it was first published and loved it then. She was one of the first to write this kind of blockbuster novel with larger than life characters. I couldn't put it down then and I couldn't put it down when I read it again.
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Format: Paperback
I have to say that I was utterly misled by both the cover of this book (slick glittery pink lips holding a pill) and the hype. I ENJOY a good trashy novel - but this wasn't anything like the pulp I was expecting. It was very readable and belts along through 20 years in the lives of the three main female characters. It covers prescription drug addiction, weight problems, mental illness, suicide, well, the whole shebang of depressing topics really. And the ending wasn't the jolly happy-ever-after that I think a lot of chic fic authors are railroaded into writing these days.

Gosh, this is well worth reading. I am reluctant to talk about nay specific part of this novel because I think that would spoil it for anyone who may be pondering purchasing this.
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Format: Paperback
This is a welcome Virago reissue of a 60s classic with a witty and irreverent introduction by Julie Burchill.

Starting in 1945 this follows the careers, love lives and addictions of three girls in New York: a genius singing/dancing star, a beauty with no talent other than her amazing face and body, and the cool ice-queen who becomes the 'face' of TV cosmetic advertising.

The characters are kind of cliched yet Susann makes them compelling, everyday and alien all at the same time; and the drama of their lives never stops. Written in 1966 (or at least published then) this depicts a world where even hugely rich and successful women just want to find a man to love and have his babies, while the men manage to have it all...

Beneath all the glitz and drama though is a huge anger at the fates doled out to women, and this gives the book a surprising depth. Glamorous, addictive and really quite wise as well, this is a fabulous read whether you're a chick-lit fan or a feminist (or both!).
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