The Girls in the Picture by Melanie Benjamin
A Novel

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 1 Critic Review

Inspiration is a rare and unexpected gift in a book filled with the fluff of Hollywood, but Benjamin provides it with The Girls in the Picture.
-NPR

Synopsis

Girls could not be more timely—or troubling—about the treatment of women in the workplace. . . . [A] rich exploration of two Hollywood friends who shaped the movies.”—USA Today
 
“One of the pleasures of The Girls in the Picture is its no-males-necessary alliance of two determined females—#TimesUp before its time.”—NPR
 
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Swans of Fifth Avenue and The Aviator’s Wife, a fascinating novel of the friendship and creative partnership between two of Hollywood’s earliest female legends—screenwriter Frances Marion and superstar Mary Pickford

It is 1914, and twenty-five-year-old Frances Marion has left her (second) husband and her Northern California home for the lure of Los Angeles, where she is determined to live independently as an artist. But the word on everyone’s lips these days is “flickers”—the silent moving pictures enthralling theatergoers. Turn any corner in this burgeoning town and you’ll find made-up actors running around, as a movie camera captures it all.

In this fledgling industry, Frances finds her true calling: writing stories for this wondrous new medium. She also makes the acquaintance of actress Mary Pickford, whose signature golden curls and lively spirit have earned her the title “America’s Sweetheart.” The two ambitious young women hit it off instantly, their kinship fomented by their mutual fever to create, to move audiences to a frenzy, to start a revolution.

But their ambitions are challenged by both the men around them and the limitations imposed on their gender—and their astronomical success could come at a price. As Mary, the world’s highest paid and most beloved actress, struggles to live her life under the spotlight, she also wonders if it is possible to find love, even with the dashing actor Douglas Fairbanks. Frances, too, longs to share her life with someone. As in any good Hollywood story, dramas will play out, personalities will clash, and even the deepest friendships might be shattered.

With cameos from such notables as Charlie Chaplin, Louis B. Mayer, Rudolph Valentino, and Lillian Gish, The Girls in the Picture is, at its heart, a story of friendship and forgiveness. Melanie Benjamin perfectly captures the dawn of a glittering new era—its myths and icons, its possibilities and potential, and its seduction and heartbreak.
 

About Melanie Benjamin

See more books from this Author
Melanie Benjamin is a pseudonym for Melanie Hauser, the author of two contemporary novels. Her first work of historical fiction as Melanie Benjamin was Alice I Have Been. She lives in Chicago, where she is at work on her next historical novel.
 
Published January 16, 2018 by Delacorte Press. 448 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Crime, Action & Adventure, Romance. Fiction
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for The Girls in the Picture
All: 1 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 0

NPR

Good
Reviewed by Jean Zimmerman on Jan 17 2018

Inspiration is a rare and unexpected gift in a book filled with the fluff of Hollywood, but Benjamin provides it with The Girls in the Picture.

Read Full Review of The Girls in the Picture: A N... | See more reviews from NPR

Rate this book!

Add Review
×