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Blending the offbeat humor of Lemony Snicket and insight into the preadolescent psyche à la Jerry Spinelli with the captivating conundrums of Blue Balliett, the debut novel from a pseudonymous author is equal parts supernatural whodunit, suspense-filled adventure and evocative coming-of-age tale. Gr 4-6- This delightful mystery (Little, Brown, 2007) by Pseudonymous Bosch is about a secret that can't be revealed. Though less common than their Harry Potter brethren, the Lemony Snicket imitators continue to crop up. More years have now passed since the death of Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962) than the span of her life, but her aura seems not to have faded at all. Robert Petkoff's diligence as a narrator matches Taraborrelli's accomplishments in generating a fresh analysis of the iconic Marilyn Monroe. Enabling JavaScript in your browser will allow you to experience all the features of our site. As much as he'd love to sing the praises of his book (he is very vain), he wouldn't want you to hear about his brave 11-year old heroes, Cass and Max-Ernest. When an unlikely pair of 11-year-old outsiders-survivalist Cassandra and aspiring stand-up comedian Max-Ernest-team up to solve a mystery surrounding the alleged death of an old magician and the strange and wondrous possessions he left behind, they unwittingly cross paths with the villainous Dr.
In fact, the narrator takes great pains not to reveal too much information throughout the book, even telling the audience to "forget everything as soon as I tell it." As the story unfolds, Cassandra (not her real name!) has come upon a puzzling box of "smells" and a message from a dead magician. Randy Taraborrelli comes the definitive biography of the most enduring icon in popular American culture.
With Petkoff's Midas touch, the cast of characters comes to life with crisp clarity and attention to nuance. 1 New York Times best-selling author Taraborrelli, who has previously written biographies of Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, and Michael Jackson, here takes on the legends, myths, and innuendos surrounding the life and death of Marilyn Monroe. Randy Taraborrelli is a respected journalist, a recognizable entertainment personality, and in-demand guest on many television programs including Today, Good Morning America, The Early Show, Entertainment Tonight, and CNN Headline News. Or about how a mysterious box of vials, the Symphony of Smells, sends them on the trail of a magician who has vanished under strange (and stinky) circumstances. Cassandra and Max-Ernest (not his real name either) embark on an exciting adventure that involves a strange notebook written in secret code, a magician who has inexplicably disappeared, and a "golden lady" who seems to be ageless and will do whatever she can to stay that way.

Cass has pointy ears and wants to be prepared for every emergency (hence the backpack full of supplies she always carries). It was written in the middle of World War I, in 1916, and first published by John Lane in the United States in October 1920 and in the United Kingdom by The Bodley Head on 21 January 1921.
When Marilyn Monroe became famous in the 1950s, the world was told that her mother was either dead or simply not a part of her life.
While there are too many good vocal characterizations to allow for a complete listing, some of the standouts include the mercurial husbands Arthur Miller and Joe DiMaggio as well as such Rat Pack figures as Peter Lawford and Frank Sinatra. Drawing on files released in 2006 under the Freedom of Information Act and interviews with key insiders, he speaks to how the actress's familial history of mental problems impacted the decisions she made throughout her life, reveals the identity of her biological father, details the extent of her relationship with the Kennedys, and more. The author devotes much attention to Monroe's mother, Gladys Baker, who suffered from severe mental illness and was institutionalized for most of her adult life. And he certainly wouldn't want you to know about the hair-raising adventures that follow and the nefarious villains they face.
David Pittu does a wonderful job of voicing the quirky narrator and gives each character a distinct and appropriate voice.
Petkoff's delivery of DiMaggio and Sinatra's ill-fated attempt to spy on Monroe and her romantic companions creates palpable dramatic tension.
A paranoid schizophrenic, Baker was emotionally distant and unpredictable, necessitating Monroe's years in foster care and, for a short period, an orphanage. After the diabolical duo shows up at Cass and Max-Ernest's school, one of their classmates (a gifted artist named Benjamin) goes missing.
And as Monroe herself, Petkoff creates a sublime breathy persona that shifts effectively from the girl-next-door Norma Jean to the glamorous Marilyn.
Baker's mother, who also suffered from mental illness, committed suicide, and Monroe was haunted by the idea that her own mental health would inevitably fail. Convinced that Benjamin has been kidnapped and faces mortal danger, Cass and Max-Ernest track the doctor and his glove-wearing sidekick to an exclusive and remote "sensorium" cum spa, where they uncover an arcane, alchemical, potentially apocalyptic bombshell. When Cass discovers the mysterious accoutrements of a dead magician, she enlists Max-Ernst's help in determining whether or not the posthumous illusionist left clues amongst his belongings asking for help.

In this groundbreaking book, Taraborrelli draws complex and sympathetic portraits of the women so influential in the actress' life, including her mother, her foster mother, and her legal guardian.
Tragically, her fears were well-founded, and, according to Taraborrelli, her entire adult life was a constant struggle to maintain some semblance of emotional equilibrium. Relayed by an often witty, sometimes arch narrator, and loaded with brainteasers-anagrams, coded messages, palindromes and more-as well as such bounty as a brief and idiosyncratic history of Benito Mussolini, the definition of synesthesia and how Earl Grey tea got its name, Bosch's deliberately eccentric offering is likely to acquire a cult following.
What the kids discover instead is a cult of powerful men and women bent on immortality that will stop at nothing to preserve (one way or another) their way of life. He also reveals, for the first time, the shocking scope of Marilyn's own mental illness, the identity of Marilyn's father and the half-brother she never knew, and new information about her relationship with the Kennedy's-Bobby, Jack, and Pat Kennedy Lawford. The title references the tone of Lemony Snicket time and time again without ever conjuring up the same wit and wisdom. Explosive, revelatory, and surprisingly moving, this is the final word on the life of one of the most fascinating and elusive icons of the 20th Century. Kennedy (and subsequent obsession with his brother, Robert), which, writes the author, precipitated the emotional spiral that ended in her fatal overdose, an event still shrouded in mystery and the subject of wild speculation. The story line is often engaging, but its ubiquitous narrative trope comes across as more annoying than insightful. Taraborrelli clearly sympathizes with the beleaguered star, and his reliance on verifiable factsand copious interviews with Monroe's intimates supports his view of Monroe as a hapless victim of heredity and circumstance, an unwanted child who-by dint of an alchemy of physical beauty and sexual allure she herself did not fully understand-became the most wanted woman in the world.
A painful and engrossing account of the profoundly damaged personality at the heart of the world's greatest sex symbol.

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