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Hollywood Savage

Hollywood Savage

A Novel

  • reading group guide
A scalding exploration of love, marriage, fidelity, and betrayal.

            “Meet me at five,”
the voice said on the answering machine.  Four ordinary words yet, when heard by the wrong person, enough to change the course of a marriage.
             Marooned in Hollywood while writing a screenplay based on his latest bestselling novel, Miles King records in his journals his escalating conviction that his glamorous wife, a New York-based journalist named Maggie, is having an affair with Miles’s favorite student.  
            Amidst the sun-buffed egos and the longing for connection and fame he encounters at every cocktail party and no-name bar in Hollywood, Miles finds unexpected comfort in an affair of his own with Lucy, a young mother whose open, eager mind sparks an irresistible passion in him. A potent brew of lust, guilt, anger, and betrayal, Miles’s journals reveal his constantly shifting emotional state and the perils he must navigate as his fantasies become increasingly hard to distinguish from reality.
            In Hollywood Savage, acclaimed novelist Kristin McCloy probes one modern man’s psychological depths with stunning accuracy, and illuminates the ways men and women try desperately to reveal themselves to one another, while still always keeping a part of their hearts a secret.  

Kristin McCloy was born in San Francisco and spent her childhood in Spain, India, and Japan.  A graduate of Duke University, she is the author of the novels Velocity and Some Girls.  Her novels have been published in more than fifteen countries.  She currently lives in Oakland, California.
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  • Atria Books | 
  • 352 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781439177167 | 
  • July 2010
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Hollywood Savage includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Kristin McCloy. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

Introduction

Miles King is a well-known author who finds himself headed for the big time when his popular book is pegged to become a film. Holed up in the Hollywood Hills as he works on the first draft of his screenplay, Miles suffers from writer’s block and a host of other insecurities, including the nagging fear that his wife is having an affair. Slowly he spirals into a world of lies and manipulation, drugs and sex—all of which he faithfully records in daily entries in his journal.

Eventually, Miles fears about his wife’s possible adultery, coupled with his own sense of crippling loneliness, drive him into the arms of Lucy, a Nietzsche-reading wife and mother who’s looking to be saved from her own list of grievances. As Lucy and her son, Walter, gradually enter Miles’s life, the two adults find themselves moving inexorably into a passionate love affair, a potent broth of guilt, infidelity, and loss—one that will change both of their lives forever.

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