cover image  All the Stars in the Heavens

All the Stars in the Heavens

Adriana Trigiani. Harper, $26.99 (464p) ISBN 978-0-06-231919-7

Trigiani’s newest fictionalizes Loretta Young’s life, both through her eyes and those of an invented personal secretary, whose closeness with the actress ties the narrative threads together. The author’s (The Shoemaker’s Wife) impeccable research and lush writing style recreates a plausible day-to-day look into the actress’s life as a staunch Catholic living and working in Hollywood, beginning in the days of the Hays Code of 1930, which imposed strict moral rules on film content. The focus is on Young’s close relationship with her mother and sisters, her affair with Spencer Tracy, her close friendship with David Niven, and most of all, her rumored romance with the married Clark Gable while shooting The Call of the Wild on location, as well as the extraordinary measures she went through to hide the subsequent pregnancy at a time when adultery and a child out of wedlock destroyed careers. Trigiani mines her own Italian roots with the character Alda Ducci, a young woman with her own secrets, who, as Loretta’s secretary and friend, navigates the trials of love and fame with her. Eminently readable and richly imagined, Trigiani’s latest will thrill her fans and surely collect new ones. (Oct.)