It was the tumultuous romance that scandalized the world: Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner fought, loved, and lived life to the hilt. Now their unbridled story is brought vividly to life by Heather Webb, the bestselling author of Meet Me in Monaco and The Next Ship Home.
In the golden age of Hollywood, two of the brightest stars would define—and defy—an era…
She was the small-town southern beauty transformed into a Hollywood love goddess. He was the legendary crooner whose voice transfixed the world. They were Ava Gardner and Frank Sinatra. Separately they were irresistible; together they were an explosive combination.
Ava’s star is rising just as Frank’s career—and public image as a family man—is taking a hit. Gone are the days of the screaming bobbysoxers and chart-topping hits. Ava, however, finds herself gracing the front page of every tabloid in America. Jealousy and cheating abound, and when the two succumb to their temperaments and their vices, their happiness is threatened at every turn.
As the pair ride the rollercoaster of success and failure, passion and anger, they both wonder if the next turn will be the end of their careers, and most devastating of all—the end of all they’ve shared.
A captivating novel with a star-studded cast spanning continents and decades, Strangers in the Night brings to life the most riveting love story of the twentieth century.
Webb (The Next Ship Home) turns to the glamour, passion, and competitiveness of Golden Age Hollywood with a stilted reimagining of the stormy relationship between Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner. The leads take turns, in remarkably similar narrative voices, recounting their love story's twists and turns. The first time Frank sets eyes on Ava at the Hollywood Palladium in the early 1940s, he wants her, despite already being married to Nancy, his childhood sweetheart. Ava is, for him, "The kind of woman that knocked the air from your lungs." The feeling isn't mutual. Ava is married to Mickey Rooney and is focused on her career, determined to move from being one of MGM's "love goddesses" to a serious actor. After five years of acting classes and studio publicity gigs, and two divorces, she's finally on the brink of stardom. Ava and Frank have a series of chance encounters during those years, and despite her reservations, she senses a "tender and passionate" side to Frank. Webb stuffs in all the highlights of Frank and Ava's Hollywood lives but offers no new insights or meaningful character development. As the couple's on-and-off relationship brings tumult to their lives, readers, too, will wonder if it's worth going the distance. For a story about two oversized and magnetic personalities, this is surprisingly flat.
What a ride!
A fun one for sure!
This historical fiction book follows the love story of singer, Frank Sinatra and actress, Ava Gardener. Their relationship was troubled and often plagued by jealously and heartache.
Ava came from a small town in NC where her parents’ expectations were for her to find a secretarial job and a husband who could support her. By the time she headed to Hollywood to pursue her acting career, she had been divorced twice. Frank came from a dysfunctional home, so he was happy to leave as he was often left to his own devices. Therefore, this made him driven to pursue his career. He moved his wife and family to Hollywood to start a new life. Frank had an apartment, while his wife had the house with the kids.
At first, Frank and Ava’s relationship didn’t go as well as Frank would have liked as Ava told Frank she wasn’t going to get involved with a married man. Their relationship blossomed when Frank decided to divorce his wife! Their relationship had their ups and downs, which had an impact on their careers, especially Frank’s. The press was very critical, so it also had an impact on not only their relationship, but their careers.
A well researched and fascinating story! I loved how the author chose to alternate the chapters between Frank and Ava! It gives you a good insight not only into their relationships and lives, but the highs and lows of Hollywood! This book is for those who grew up listening to Frank Sinatra!