Title: Be Cool
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: 1999
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: As New
Signed: Signed by Author(s)
Edition: First Edition.
Signed by Author 0385333919 This hardcover book is square and tight. The boards and spine have no wear with pristine gilt. The pages and endpages are clean, with no markings or folds. The dustjacket is As New. Original Price is intact. Not ex-lib. No remainder mark. Signed by the Author without inscription on the title page. Bookseller Inventory # 002456
Synopsis: New York Times bestselling author Elmore Leonard is back, and he's brought Get Shorty's Chili Palmer along for the ride. An unforgettable, hilarious, and spot-on insider's look at Hollywood as only Leonard could write it, Be Cool takes readers on a back-side tour of Tinseltown's other big business--the music industry.
Chili Palmer's follow-up to his smash hit film Get Leo bombed, and in Hollywood, you're considered only as hot as your last project. Once again outside the system, Chili is exploring an idea for his third film by lunching with a former "associate" from his Brooklyn days who's now a record label executive. When lunch begins with iced tea and ends in a mob hit, Chili soon finds himself in an unlikely alliance with one of the LAPD's finest, Detective Darryl Holmes, and the very likely next target of Russian gangsters.
With a hit man on his trail, Chili tries to pull together his next movie, the story of Linda Moon, a real-life singer with dreams that go further than her current gig with Chicks International, just doing Spice Girls songs. She's desperate to tear loose from her current manager, an erstwhile pimp named Raji. Orchestrating his movie as he goes along, Chili wrests the reins of Linda's singing career away from Raji, basing the plot of his new film on the action that unfolds as a result. As he fakes his way to success in the music business with his trademark aplomb, Chili manipulates his adversaries and advances his friends, showing all how to be cool when the heat's on.
With his unique combination of the good, the bad, and the unexpected, Elmore Leonard has written a novel that twists and turns to the last page. From screen tests to rock sessions, from the Hills and the Valley to Hollywood and Vine, Be Cool is all new, all clever and, most definitely, all that.
Review: The film Get Shorty was a success on many fronts. It introduced a new style of hip gangster that revised the stereotype of the Godfather series. It also helped relaunch the career of John Travolta. And it brought Elmore Leonard's impressive body of fiction to larger public attention. In Hollywood, such a triumph usually spawns a sequel--a film that rehashes the great jokes and cool scenes of the first film, but with none of the panache that initially inspired audiences.
In the beginning of Be Cool, the sequel to the novel Get Shorty, readers are reminded that Chili Palmer--like his creator--scored a huge success with a gangster film (his was entitled Get Leo). But the sequel, Get Lost, was a predictable dud. Rather than follow that sordid story, however, Leonard takes Chili into a totally new direction. He places Chili on a murder investigation (in which he is a prime suspect) and then traces Chili's entry into the music business. Meanwhile, Leonard reveals a whole new cast of fresh, funny, and flaky characters to populate Chili's world, characters like Elliot the gigantic, gay, Samoan bodyguard who lives to be on the stage. Throughout, the voice of John Travolta rings in Chili's every speech (word has it that Travolta has already been cast to reprise the role) as Leonard pokes fun at the Hollywood apparatus and the task of a sequel writer.
Be Cool surpasses its original because it is so self-consciously a novel about sequels, about the sometimes cowardice that limits the creativity of the American film industry. It is hard to imagine how Leonard could top the multilayered satire/crime novel/exposé. One only hopes for a sequel. Fans of Be Cool might want to check out music from The Stone Coyotes, the band that served as Leonard's model in the book. --Patrick O'Kelley
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