"Fast and furious. With a deft scalpel, Coscarelli cuts into the
belly of the Hollywood beast and reveals the desperation within."
- Warren Adler, author of War of the Roses -


A novel by Kate Coscarelli

What is it like to be the daughter of one of Hollywood's most glamorous actresses? Ask Chelsea Hunter. She can tell you how her tenacious grandmother Laverne Thomas brought eight-year-old Bunny to Hollywood in the 1930's to make her a star--how she begged, bribed, blackmailed, and even sacrificed her daughter's innocence for the success. Chelsea can tell you the price they all paid!

Three generations of Hollywood women reveal their passions and fears in this tough, dramatic story. A virtual history of the film capital over the last sixty years tumbles out in the story of the three women's fight to survive despite the glamour and the glory.

Bunny Thomas becomes a beloved child actress and grows up to be a superstar. Laverne still orchestrates her daughter's every move. Chelsea, the child of one of Bunny's brief marriages, is given attention only when she's needed for public appearances with her mother.

Somehow, though, the clever, determined Chelsea grows into a well-adjusted young woman with the hope of being happy in both love and career, far away from her manipulative grandmother. But the madness surrounding their lives overwhelms them when a sensational scandal threatens Chelsea's future, Bunny's sanity, and Laverne's role as her daughter's overzealous protector.

Leading Lady is a penetrating depiction of the darkness that lies just beneath the surface of Hollywood fame and fortune--the shadows, the secrets and the sordid lies concealed there. A stunning return to the territory only she has explored with such authenticity and insight: Leading Lady is the best Coscarelli yet!

Published in hardcover by St. Martin's Press Books, August 1991
ISBN 0-312-05889-6

Read the Publisher's Weekly Review of LEADING LADY



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