Sunday, April 26, 2009

The View from Babylon

Continuing with the entertainment industry/Los Angeles theme of the last two books, my next choice from the endless, unread stacks was The View from Babylon: The Notes of a Hollywood Voyeur by Donald Rawley. Although Rawley wrote many fictional works (poems, short stories, screenplays, novels), this is a collection of non-fiction essays about Los Angeles and Hollywood. As the title suggests, the subject matter is often tawdry and unsettling. He writes about a homicidal female bodybuilder, suburban meth addicts who kill their babies, and snarky movie industry people. It's not all "downer" material, though. For example, Rawley visits Tippi Hedren at her Shambala animal sanctuary. Amazon.com reviewers suggest that one must be a Los Angeleno to appreciate this book, but I disagree. I've only been there once, for about three days nearly 20 years ago, but I still enjoyed this book immensely. It's a quick, memorable read, and Rawley writes better than most.

Current tally: 34 books finished, 29 books acquired

No comments: