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The glimmer palace
Beatrice Colin
Adult Fiction COLIN

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Covering the life of Lilly Nelly Aphrodite from the turn of the century until World War II, this overly familiar historical novel takes the listener inside the clubs and film industry of Berlin. German accents depict most of the characters; it probably would have been wiser for Justine Eyre and her director to take the Berlin setting as a given, for little attention is paid to class differences. Only an American movie mogul sounds genuine. Eyre portrays Lilly as delicate and sweet; unfortunately, she reads Ilya, Lilly's main love interest, in much the same way, except with a Russian accent. Lilly's best friend Hanna has a gruffer voice that predictably imitates Marlene Dietrich. Though the narrative is clear enough to avoid confusion, most of the women sound exactly alike and boredom is inescapable. A Riverhead hardcover (Reviews, May 5). (July) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

From Library Journal:

With her third novel (after Nude Untitled and Disappearing Acts), Scottish journalist and playwright Colin offers a work of historical fiction about the life and times of the orphaned Lilly Nelly Aphrodite, who grows up in early 20th-century Berlin. Left at a young age without any family, Lilly emerges as a levelheaded, strong-willed, and sometimes compassionate survivor who learns early on how to adapt to the ever-changing circumstances brought on by both personal and societal upheaval. As she moves from the orphanage to life as a live-in maid, a bargirl, a typist, and eventually a film star, Lilly tries to keep her emotions on an even keel and desperation at bay. When things unravel, however, she is not above misleading others--and sometimes finds herself being misled. The characters who intersect Lilly's life for better or for worse are as fascinating as Lilly; they, too, are struggling in a Germany that never seems to regain its stability after losing the first world war. Throughout, Colin deftly weaves into the narrative ongoing observations on cinema as a form of entertainment needed and craved by a bereft populace, and she eventually brings this aspect of the novel to the forefront. Highly recommended. [See PrepubAlert, LJ 4/1/08.]--M. Neville, Trenton P.L., NJ (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Lilly Aphrodite
Grew up in an orphanage; went to Berlin to live with Hanne; became a star in silent films.

Lilly's friend; takes Lilly in after the orphanage shuts down; works at a bar.

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