Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood

Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood Review

In this riveting popular history, the creator of You Must Remember This probes the inner workings of Hollywood’s glamorous golden age through the stories of some of the dozens of actresses pursued by Howard Hughes, to reveal how the millionaire mogul’s obsessions with sex, power and publicity trapped, abused, or benefitted women who dreamt of screen stardom.

In recent months, the media has reported on scores of entertainment figures who used their power and money in Hollywood to sexually harass and coerce some of the most talented women in cinema and television. But as Karina Longworth reminds us, long before the Harvey Weinsteins there was Howard Hughes—the Texas millionaire, pilot, and filmmaker whose reputation as a cinematic provocateur was matched only by that as a prolific womanizer.

His supposed conquests between his first divorce in the late 1920s and his marriage to actress Jean Peters in 1957 included many of Hollywood’s most famous actresses, among them Billie Dove, Katharine Hepburn, Ava Gardner, and Lana Turner. From promoting bombshells like Jean Harlow and Jane Russell to his contentious battles with the censors, Hughes—perhaps more than any other filmmaker of his era—commoditized male desire as he objectified and sexualized women. Yet there were also numerous women pulled into Hughes’s grasp who never made it to the screen, sometimes virtually imprisoned by an increasingly paranoid and disturbed Hughes, who retained multitudes of private investigators, security personnel, and informers to make certain these actresses would not escape his clutches.

Vivid, perceptive, timely, and ridiculously entertaining, Seduction is a landmark work that examines women, sex, and male power in Hollywood during its golden age—a legacy that endures nearly a century later.

Title:Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood
Edition Language:English

    Some Testimonial About This Book:

  • Lee

    I had the audio book of this so it definitely felt like an extended episode or when you listen to a whole season at once. I had been a bit concerned that what she put out on her podcast would make a l...

  • Alecia

    Well, Howard Hughes was a bigger piece of work than most of us might have thought. In this exhaustively researched book, the author (the creator and host of the podcast You Must Remember This) tells w...

  • Rachel

    No one does Hollywood history better than Karina Longworth....

  • Joseph

    A fascinating, slightly snarky in the right places and sad in many others look at a real grade-A asshole, the women he terrorized and the industry who enabled it. ...

  • Nick Spacek

    In her new book, Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood, Karina Longworth uses the story of movie mogul and industrialist Hughes to examine the lives of myriad young women in t...

  • Lisa

    Thank you Custom House Books for an e-copy of Seduction by Karina Longworth for review. Seduction will be available November 13, 2018.Seduction is a history book not just about Howard Hughes but also ...

  • Stephanie

    Interesting in parts, but I got bored in others. It's no wonder that Weinstein et al thought they had a right to act the way they did- that's the culture that has been around Hollywood since the very ...

  • James

    Amazingly researched hybrid of a Howard Hughes bio and a history of ALL the women (famous and not) that circled his orbit or were snared by his gravitational pull. It's all about the movies and Hollyw...

  • Cait

    3.5 stars. I really like Karina's style of writing (which makes sense, I like her podcast!), I just wish I was more interested in some of the subject matter. ...

  • Douglas Fugate

    This book is about Howard Hughes. It covers his life from being raised in Texas to his death while being flown to a hospital in Houston, Texas. The reader will learn of the women he touches – physic...