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At the dawn of 1942, the dark days of Pearl Harbor still loom over Los Angeles. America is now at war, and posters warn home front Hollywoodites that loose lips sink ships. Wartime propaganda is the name of the game, and studios are expected to conjure stories that galvanize the public in favor of the war effort. Marcus Adler is an MGM screenwriter whose latest movie was stolen out from under his whiskey glass, and he's determined it won't happen again. He comes up with a surefire hit, but his chance to triumph is threatened by a vicious rumor: "Marcus Adler is a goddamned commie." Gwendolyn Brick is the handiest gal with a needle this side of Edith Head. After losing her job at the Cocoanut Grove, she dreams of opening her own dress store. But banks don't make loans to single girls. However, wartime in LA opens up an opportunity that will rake in the bucks. But will it be worth the trouble if it drags her back into the orbit of Bugsy Siegel? At the outbreak of war, the Hollywood Reporter's circulation starts to shrink like a food rations coupon book. Its lead columnist, Kathryn Massey, realizes she can no longer ignore the obvious: her boss, Billy Wilkerson, is gambling away his fortune - and her future. Could their very survival depend on a place nobody's heard of called Las Vegas? In the city of searchlights, suspicions can lurk behind every shadow.
Searchlights and Shadows is the fourth in Martin Turnbull's series of historical novels set during Hollywood's golden age.