Book Review: Seduction: Sex, Lies and Stardom in Howard Hughes’s Hollywood

As society remains enthralled by the archetype of the high-flying visionary billionaire, author Karina Longworth revisits the unsavoury legacy of its originator, Harold Hughes.

With Seduction, Karina Longworth destroys the Hollywood myth of Howard Hughes: that the producer and aviator was a suave ladykilling billionaire who only became an eccentric recluse later in life. Longworth, the creator of the You Must Remember This podcast (about old Hollywood’s secrets and forgotten stories), extinguishes the Hughes womanising legend by celebrating the women who were sucked into his orbit and detailing the disturbing treatment they received at the behest of the controlling billionaire.

As much a condemnation of golden age Hollywood’s misogyny and bizarre mythmaking as it is of Hughes, Seduction reveals a disturbed figure who was closer to James Ellroy’s sickening fictional portrayal in the crime writer’s Underworld USA trilogy than the dashing Leonardo DiCaprio version of Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator. Seduction is the modern take Hughes and Hollywood deserve.

Author: Karina Longworth
Publisher: Custom House

Seduction by Karina Longworth cover

Adelaide In-depth

Get the latest stories, insights and exclusive giveaways delivered straight to your inbox every week.