Monday, September 3, 2012

Catch the Sun A Review

 Title: Catch the Sun
Author: Lee Zamloch
Publisher: Not Known
Length: 264 pages
Genre: Contemporary

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Marilyn Monroe begins appearing on Amanda Grace’s patio dancing, laughing at the moon and gazing at Amanda through the glass doors. Is it possible that Marilyn, against all reason, has somehow transported herself through time and space to contemporary Los Angeles? And why does she haunt Amanda, a model whose beauty is undeniable, but whose talent is questionable?

The visitations begin when Amanda’s mother, Edith, commits suicide, an event that shakes Amanda to her foundation. For, while she has been a successful model, she has always measured herself against her mother, a well-known artist who has overcome severe obstacles. But unlike Edith and her accomplished sister, Joanne, Amanda Grace has not distinguished herself intellectually or artistically, nor even managed to marry and have children. In her eyes, she has failed to live up to her mother’s expectations. Now, with Edith’s death, she has forever lost her chance to prove herself. In her grief, she forgets to eat, sleep, or carry on with life’s simplest tasks. The final blow comes when Amanda accidentally learns she was adopted. With the loss of her family as a touchstone, her foundation crumbles, and her fragile sense of self dissolves completely.

CATCH THE SUN is a story about how an obsession with a celebrity can impact the life of an ordinary woman. It explores our endless fascination with Marilyn Monroe’s fragility, beauty and dazzling rise and fall.

About the Author
Lee Zamloch

Lee Zamloch lives on the Central Coast of California where she writes fiction. Her work has appeared in a number of literary journals and she has won several honors for her writing including the Booklegger Award for best submission of the year from Toyon and honorable mentions from the Nelson Algren Award, and Raymond Carver Short Story Contest. She has published two novels which are available from in both print and kindle editions. She is currently at work on her next novel.

Lee has been a teacher, a consultant, a college professor and a program designer. She enjoys hiking, reading, traveling and romping with her two Siberian huskies, Sunny and Storm.

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Questions asked

What was the motivation behind writing about Marilyn Monroe?
The motivation behind writing about Marilyn Monroe was my own fascination with her. Her vulnerability pulled at me, especially after I saw "The Misfits." Another movie that strongly affected me was a very early one called "Don't Bother to Knock" made in 1952. In both movies I saw a woman who was so fragile it was hard to understand how she could survive in the competitive, dog-eat-dog world of Hollywood. Granted these were roles she was playing, but I thought I saw something of the real woman underneath. The fact that she had to fight hard to become a movie star--something that takes a lot of toughness--seemed at odds with the fragile woman she seemed to be. I wanted to understand how she could be both hard and soft, tough and vulnerable, at the same time.

How long did it take you to do research on her life?
As for researching her life, I had been reading about her for years, so it didn't take long at all to refine my knowledge of the facts of her life. I read (or reread) a couple of the best biographies, made sure I'd seen all the movies, and then honed in on the last summer of her life. Of course, much of what I wrote in the novel is fictional, but it's all compatible with what was going on with her at the time.

My Review 4Stars

This is a book I would have not chosen to read myself since I am not a big fan or obsessed with movie stars, VIP's, celebrities etc. But I think the author did a wonderful and thorough work on research to be able to write about this well known woman's last days on earth. Known all over the world for her affair with the President of USA. Her song: Diamonds are a girl's best friend  and so forth. Never saw one of her movies and not really eager to do so. Let her rest in peace.
The depression Marilyn Monroe faced was severe and out of hand and it seems that she did not want help or could not recognize help. Her constant need for pills to doze the pain and hurt let to her death to early in her life. This translates into the main character's live Meredith Lindsay or Amanda Grace who believed her mother was Marilyn Monroe in her own depressed world.
It all starts when she found out after her mother's suicide that she was adopted. Her failing career, her fading beauty and the absence of anything real in her life, husband, lover, child, house, dog or plant contributed to this.
Just as the famous star she had no dependents, no responsibilities and could not decern right from wrong in a dazed world of pills. Drowning out reality which almost led to her death.
The only one who cared enough to reach out was a adoptive six year old. Who just lost her mother to illness and living with an adoptive mother who cared nothing for this little girl's state. Cherry Webster was like a breath of fresh air in the story. The reason for Meredith to take some action. To be involved with some one other then herself. Her character supported Amanda Grace character giving her some womanly instinct. Connecting her to reality. But only in blurs, only temporary.
I felt sorry for the little girl who had to act like a grown up when all the grown ups closest to her failed her. Anna the adoptive mother, Amanda the adoptive friend. Yet she was the one who saved Amanda/ Meredith keeping her wits and found a family to love in return.
Meredith was a complicated woman and many around her did no attempts to know her. Causing her to slip in a depression seeing Marilyn appear to her and talks to her. Obsessed and convinced she must play the roll of Marilyn when a script was handed to her. Only in her own mind did she thought she was the perfect candid. But all her hopes were shattered when a producer out right refused to be part of it.
The author running both lives parallel so that you could understand the mood, the under current of both characters and what led them on that path of self destruction.
Depression is a horrible decease that is so easily ignored by the family and friends of those who suffers it. But yet there is so much help if only they were willing to receive the help offered.
The title of the book fitting as Meredith tries to catch the sun in more ways than one leaving her depressed once this could not be done.
I could recommend it to readers who is fascinated with Marilyn Monroe's life.

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1 comment:

  1. Congratulation to Anita for winning her copy of Catch the Sun. Happy reading Anita