I, an Actress

Jeffrey Dinsmore, As Told to . Contemporary Press $11 (179p) ISBN 978-0-9744614-9-6

Dinsmore takes a cheeky look at the life and times of a tawdry B-movie actress in his entertaining pulp debut, written as the autobiography of Karen Jamey Hitler, a nonstarlet of the 1930s. A precocious, gorgeous German girl whose immigrant parents worked the minstrel circuit, Jamey drops her surname and injures a competitor to get her first significant part. Her career takes off in earnest once she moves from Baltimore to L.A. with her father, overcomes a corrupt agent and hooks up with Tony Tarantella. The seedy gangster introduces Jamey to the "big" names, gives her a job as a stripper and becomes her lover. When he catches her in bed with Fletcher Bisque and kills Fletcher, Jamey flees to Guatemala, where she quickly becomes a local celebrity and gets involved in revolution (and romantic intrigue with a pair of political rivals). A return to America to rebuild her career leads to monster movies, alcoholism and a breakdown. Dinsmore cobbles together a nice blend of Hollywood shtick and bloated narcissism for Jamey's voice, and the result is a light diversion: dirty, low, funny and stylish. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 10/24/2005
Release date: 11/01/2005
Genre: Fiction
Discover what to read next