- Title: A Touch of Stardust: A Novel
- Author: Kate Alcott
- Genre: Historical Fiction
- Published: February 2015 – Doubleday
- Source: Publisher
My take: Julie Crawford, recent graduate of Smith College, didn’t want to go home, get married and live the life her parents intended for her. She wanted to follow her dream to Hollywood to become a screenplay writer. Her parents agreed to one year and then she had to come home. Julie landed an office job at Selznick International Pictures (SIP) which was starting production of Gone With The Wind. That job lasted one day – she was fired by Selznick himself. Not to worry, though. She landed a job as assistant to Carole Lombard, formerly of Fort Wayne, Indiana (Julie’s hometown), queen of screwball comedies, and soon-to-be wife of Clark Gable. Eventually Carole helped Julie make connections in the screenwriting world.
Julie met Andy Weinstein, an assistant producer, on her one day at SIP and was instantly attracted to him. Their relationship grew as filming of GWTW progressed and provided a parallel storyline that I enjoyed. Andy was under pressure to keep things going smoothly on the set while at the same time he felt pressure from the looming Nazi threat in Europe. He felt he should be doing something to help his relatives in Berlin instead of making movies in Hollywood.
I really enjoyed A Touch of Stardust. Reading it was like watching a movie from the ’40s. I was immersed in many aspects of making GWTW. From casting to the actual filming to the premier in Atlanta – I felt like I had a front row seat to it all. I liked the Julie/Andy storyline but I thought the real star of the book was Carole Lombard. Alcott made her leap off the page every time she appeared. Her relationship with Clark Gable was so endearing and her unapologetic ways and colorful language made her larger than life.
If you’re a fan of Hollywood, Gone With The Wind, or stories about following a dream I think you’ll enjoy A Touch of Stardust. I sure did!