Friday, June 12, 2015

The Santangelos by Jackie Collins

The Santangelos by Jackie Collins
Published by St. Martin's Press ISBN 9781250048233
Hardcover, $27.99, 535 pages

Well, it's finally feeling like summer around here (it's been nearly 90 degrees for the past three days) and that means beach reading is on. (Well not at the beach for me, up on the apartment roof pool deck, but still.)

What is the perfect book to commence beach reading? Nothing beats Jackie Collins, and she has a new installment in her long running Lucky series, The Santangelos. I have been reading about Lucky Santangelo and her family, friends and enemies since Chances was published back in 1981.

 Collins is an expert at creating a perfectly blended cocktail of sex, ambition, drugs, alcohol, mayhem and murder, and The Santangelos continues in her winning tradition. She manages to create several storylines that you know are going to intersect at some point and just explode, like cars on a collision course, but getting to that point keeps you turning the pages.

Lucky is still running her fabulous Vegas hotel, and still happily married to filmmaker husband Lennie. They are a great couple, who compliment each other's strengths and balance out each other's weaknesses.

Lucky is waiting for a visit from her beloved father Gino, who has moved to Palm Springs with his new wife. Lucky's son Bobby has just opened up another successful nightclub in Chicago, and 18 year-old daughter Max is in Europe partying and trying to get a modeling career going.

As usual, there are a few bad guys who want to cause problems for Lucky. A Middle Eastern king vows vengeance, holding Lucky responsible for his son's death, and when Bobby is framed for a murder and someone Lucky loves is gunned down, Lucky goes into fifth gear to find out who is targeting her family.

We see several characters pop up here from previous books- former child star Willow Price, mega movie star Billy who once loved young Max, Bobby's business partner M.J., and his girlfriend Assistant District Attorney Denver Jones- among others. I particularly enjoyed the funeral scene when many previous characters made cameo appearances.

You know what you are getting in Jackie Collins' Lucky books- lots of sex scenes, opulent homes, behind-the-scenes Hollywood stories, fabulous clothes, great parties, drugs, really bad guys, violence and loyalty- and that's what makes it so much fun.

Lucky is a terrific character, a strong-willed, ambitious, hard-working, smart woman who loves her family and friends and would do anything for them. And that's a good thing for her family and friends, because they seem to need her help a lot.

The Santangelos is a fabulous book to while away the days under the sun getting your Vitamin D. And even though it's 535 pages, you will tear through it quickly. The good news is that after you finish The Santangelos, you can start with Chances and read the entire Lucky Santangelo canon if you haven't already.

You don't need to have read any of the Lucky series to enjoy this one, Collins gives you enough information in this book that you aren't lost, but those who have read the Lucky books will get an extra level of enjoyment.

(Warning- there are graphic sex scenes in this book. If that is not you thing, don't read this one.)

Jackie Collins's website is here, and you can read an excerpt from The Santangelos there.
I met Jackie Collins  a few years ago at Barnes & Noble


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