Oona & Salinger
There comes a time when all men seem to wait expectantly for catastrophe to come and sweep away their problems. These periods are generally known as the pre-war years. They are not an ideal time to fall in love.
New York City 1940. At the swanky Stork Club, where wealthy society girls and dazzling stars mixed, a trio of young heiresses is turning the heads of many men: Gloria Vanderbilt, Oona O’Neill and Carol Marcus. That day, like many others, Truman Capote is cavorting with the young girls, and Orson Welles’ cigar smoke floats in the air. The Stork Club is also the place where an aspiring author by the name of Jerry Salinger meets Oona O’Neill and falls instantly under her spell. Salinger’s writer’s voice is just starting to form, while Oona is struggling to accept her estrangement from her father, the famous American playwright Eugene O’Neill, who has condemned her lifestyle as depraved. After an awkward conversation, Jerry leaves the club, angry at himself for being unable to make a positive impression on her. Then he finds in his pocket a Stork Club ashtray. Oona has left a mark on her prey.
Summer 1941. Salinger and Oona meet again in Point Pleasant. There their romance blossoms — there are conversations about literature, war, and freedom, along with the dancing and kissing. Back in New York City, they flirt all through fall and winter. Then Pearl Harbour happens. And while Salinger is called up to fight in Europe, Oona has already determined to conquer Hollywood…
Praise for Oona & Salinger
‘This is not a story, this is a love story.’ – Livres Hebdo
‘[Beigbeder is] the Match-Maker: this may be his best novel yet.’ – Le Magazine Litteraire
‘This is the page turner of the autumn.’ – Elle
‘[Frederic Beigbeder] has written an unusual and charming novel. […] In between historically true facts, Beigbeder skilfully injects his own fantasised version of a failed romance and invents an antagonistic novel, where glamour, passion, horror and ambition match each other in a dance as unhealthy as it is magnetic.’ – Glamour