Book Review: “Lucky” by Jackie Collins

JC - LuckyWhere does one even start when critiquing one of the top timeless suspense novels? Jackie Collins has been writing since the late 60’s (if you only count her published novels) and has forever been known as the lady who articulately unsheathed the nature of lives lived by Hollywood royalties. Although Ms. Collins has been both widely-acclaimed and heavily criticized over the years for her novels, every time I read one of her books, they always portray a healthy dose of sex, drugs and fame. And the kind of damage all three can do to an individual. “Lucky” is no exception.


Lucky Santangelo is the most commonly used heroine by Jackie Collins and also one of my all time favourite suspense novel characters. Ms. Collins has focused on Lucky’s life so much that she’d created the Lucky Santangelo Series (books based on Lucky and her life some of which were made into movies); “Lucky” being the second book.

In “Lucky”, readers meet adult Lucky who is still yearning for her father’s approval while trying to make her mark in the world of the greats. She’s calculated, street smart, occasionally ruthless and, as always, flamboyant.

Now, I’d first read “Poor Little Bitch Girl” (which focused more on the generation after Lucky) before reading “Lucky” and, to be frank, wasn’t too keen on reading a story about the mother of the oh-so-handsome and charming Bobby. But, I thought to myself, ‘you can’t exactly go wrong with a Jackie Collins novel, right?’ and decided to read it anyway. Jeezus! Was I glad that I did! Fast-paced but still restrictive, “Lucky” is the kind of book that you neglect sleep over and become withdrawn just to finish.

On top of falling in love with the type of person Lucky is portrayed as, I also adored reading about: the birth and rise of Lennie Golden’s career and how he came to know, obsess, love and marry Lucky; the spoiled yet adorable Brigette as she struggled into her own, Steven and Carrie’s lives as both tried to come to terms with Carrie’s past; the heiress who could never be pleased; the failed actress who became an Italian drug dealer’s personal punching bag; and the retired mobster who finally recognized his daughter’s true potential and just how much she reflected him.

However, the biggest allure to reading one of Jackie Collins’ novels has to be the way she writes! When Ms. Collins was describing the love that had come to form between Lennie and Lucky, she claims that ‘Falling in love is like getting hit by a large truck and yet not being mortally wounded. Just sick to your stomach, high one minute, low the next. Starving hungry but unable to eat. Hot, cold, forever horny, full of hope and enthusiasm, with momentary depressions that wipe you out.’

The plot, as usual, seems to be in a mess as Ms. Collins jumps from one end of the spectrum to the other. However, for a reader like me who sometimes gets bored with one particular story, I absolutely adored the fact that Ms. Collins’ relays numerous stories within one novel. Still, this strategy of storytelling proved to be slightly troubling at times when a character’s name came up and I had to try and recall who they were and how exactly they were related to what was happening in the story.


In true Jackie Collins’ style, she also exposes readers to the lives of other characters that occasionally intertwine with the lives of Lucky and her entourage. Then, when enough facts are revealed about each individual character, Ms. Collins makes the characters’ lives collide in one big bang that can only be described as a perfectly nail-biting, palm-sweating, mind-blowing climax.


Rating: 9.5/10

Book Info:


Publisher:   Pocket Books (January 1, 1986)
Length: 598 pages (paperback)
Series: Lucky Santangelo #2
Source: My own copy
Genre: Adult fiction, Romance, Suspense
Completed: March 2014


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