Review

Drop Dead Beautiful

by Jackie Collins

There are a few irrefutable facts that you can count on in this
life. There will always be traffic when you need to be somewhere.
The minute you change lines, the one you left will start moving.
And a new Jackie Collins book is always a nonstop, sexy, roller
coaster ride, tailor-made for the dog days of summer. DROP
DEAD BEAUTIFUL is the 25th scintillating novel from Collins
and the fifth in the Lucky Santangelo series, the first since
1999’s DANGEROUS KISS.   

The former Mafia “donne” turned Hollywood movie studio
mogul, and now real estate developer, is back with a
vengeance. Raised in a powerful family mired in organized
crime, Lucky and her father made the conscious choice to follow the
straight and narrow and invest in legitimate businesses. From
then on, she lived up to her name, but not without some painful
pitfalls along the way. And it seems that willful daughter Max is
cut from the same cloth. Planning a new luxury resort in Las
Vegas and organizing a birthday party for Gino, her elderly father
and patriarch of the Santangelo family --- as well as being a wife
to movie producer Lennie and keeping tabs on rebellious daughter
Max --- doesn’t leave our heroine with much downtime. Still,
she manages to keep all these different engines gunning at full
throttle.

Lucky has given up long ago running Panther Studios and is now
refocusing her attention on building the luxury resort in Las Vegas
called the Keys. But someone is out to thwart her --- possibly even
kill her. Anthony Bonar, egomaniacal womanizer and cold-hearted
killer, would love nothing more than to see Lucky’s Las Vegas
dream implode like the old MGM Grand, and he’ll do anything
to see that it does. Failed actor and spoiled heir Henry
Whitfield-Simmons has always hated Lucky with a passion, blaming
her for his non-start career. Meanwhile, prickly director Alex
Woods has always harbored an unrequited desire for Lucky but knows
that she will always remain faithful to her husband --- that is, as
long as he’s in the picture. And someone keeps leaving
mysterious notes in her mailbox with the ominous words “drop
dead beautiful.” All signs point to danger for Lucky.

Lucky is not alone in her whirlwind lifestyle. (As always, the
subplots in Collins’s novels are just as rollicking as the
main storyline). Her friend, mega-star Venus Maria, is also busy
trying to keep her boy-toy actor boyfriend satisfied as well as
keep her name in the papers and on the marquees. And Max is being
wooed by an online suitor who keeps pressing for a face-to-face
meeting. Anthony’s long-suffering wife, Irma, has decided to
take matters into her own hands and embarks on an affair with her
sexy gardener. Alex Woods struggles with his secret affection for
Lucky and his headstrong lawyer girlfriend, Ling. Henry wants to
even the score with Lucky for robbing him of his career. Everyone
in the novel has something to prove and someone to get back at,
which provides the perfect fodder for a big, juicy revenge story,
served up Jackie Collins-style.  

DROP DEAD BEAUTIFUL marks Collins’s 25th entry in a
genre she helped to refine and raise to new heights. How fitting
that this silver-anniversary publication celebrates her most
popular character, a woman who lives by her wits but knows how to
use her sexuality in equal measure. This is one author who knows
her audience and doesn’t disappoint. Each storyline is
equally engrossing, which is a rarity, and zips the reader along
through the ins and outs of big money dealings and high-stakes
showdowns. What more could one want from a summer read?

Reviewed by Bronwyn Miller on January 21, 2011

Drop Dead Beautiful
by Jackie Collins

  • Publication Date: June 3, 2008
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Mass Market Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks
  • ISBN-10: 0312937091
  • ISBN-13: 9780312937096