Hollywood, 1927. A struggling studio puts everything on the line to produce the world’s first talking picture, when its greatest star is found brutally murdered.
The world is gripped by the fall out from Charlie Tanner’s mysterious death. Studio manager Alexander Sirotov has his hands full managing the press – and persuading reigning Queen of Hollywood, madcap comedy star Esme Holt, to play the grieving widow when she insists that the terms of the fauxmance contract expired along with Charlie.
Persuading extremely carefully that is, as Sirotov is in huge debt to Esme after she lent him the money to re-fit the studio to shoot a talkie. Esme’s lover, gossip columnist Lily Copeland will do anything to protect Esme and the secret son she had with Charlie (it was a complicated fauxmance) – but when the murder suspect she invents to keep Sirotov from framing Esme is ‘identified’ as trainee director Max Von Brauner, Lily realises that the power of her gossip column could send an innocent man to the gallows.
Ferocious ambition perfectly encased in a shining shell of egotism: Stella Carr arrives in Hollywood from the slums of East London and will stop at nothing to pave her rise to the top – including selling out one time lover, action man heart throb Jack McCann who is in the grips of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from the horrors he experienced in the trenches.
And struggling a little with the fact that he accidentally shot and killed his best friend, Charlie Tanner.
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