Another City, Not My Own [NOOK Book]

Overview

This is the story of the Trial of the Century as only Dominick Dunne can write it. Told from the point of view of one of Dunne's most familiar fictional characters-Gus Bailey-Another City, Not My Own tells how Gus, the movers and shakers of Los Angeles, and the city itself are drawn into the vortex of the O.J. Simpson trial.

We have met Gus Bailey in previous novels by Dominick Dunne. He is a writer and journalist, father of a murdered child, ...
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Another City, Not My Own

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Overview

This is the story of the Trial of the Century as only Dominick Dunne can write it. Told from the point of view of one of Dunne's most familiar fictional characters-Gus Bailey-Another City, Not My Own tells how Gus, the movers and shakers of Los Angeles, and the city itself are drawn into the vortex of the O.J. Simpson trial.

We have met Gus Bailey in previous novels by Dominick Dunne. He is a writer and journalist, father of a murdered child, and chronicler of justice-served or denied-as it relates to the rich and famous.  Now back in Los Angeles, a city that once adored him and later shunned him, Gus is caught up in what soon becomes a national obsession. Using real names and places, Dunne interweaves the story of the trial with the personal trials Gus endures as he faces his own mortality.

By day, Gus is at the courthouse, the confidant of the Goldman and Simpson families, the lawyers, the journalists, the hangers-on, even the judge; at night he is the honored guest at the most dazzling gatherings in town as everyone-from Kirk Douglas to Heidi Fleiss, from Elizabeth Taylor to Nancy Reagan-delights in the latest news from the corridors of the courthouse.

Another City, Not My Own does what no other book on this sensational case has been able to do because of Dominick Dunne's unique ability to probe the sensibilities of participants and observers. This book illuminates the meaning of guilt and innocence in America today. A vivid, revealing achievement, Another City, Not My Own is Dominick Dunne at his best.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
In Another City, Not My Own: A Novel in the Form of a Memoir, Dominick Dunne, one of America's best-known commentators on justice, tackles perhaps the most scandalous abuse of justice and shares his most personal insights and experiences. Claiming he found it "inhibiting" to write about himself as Dominick Dunne, the author enlists the help of an alter ego from previous novels, Augustus Bailey. As Gus Bailey, Dunne returns to Los Angeles — a city he left two decades earlier amid great personal upheaval — to cover the O. J. Simpson trial — the Trial of the Century — for Vanity Fair magazine. With Bailey, we watch from the front row as the courtroom antics of F. Lee Bailey, Robert Shapiro, Judge Lance Ito, and Marcia Clark unfold. We mingle at exclusive parties, lunch at intimate gatherings, and travel on celebrity jets, all the while listening to Hollywood's biggest names speak candidly and irrepressibly about the case unfolding before them.

Driving Bailey throughout the novel is the partiality of the judicial system — an injustice he experienced firsthand during the trial of his daughter's killer. From the outset of the Simpson trial, Bailey is outspokenly convinced of O. J.'s guilt — and equally vocal in his disdain for the fiasco the trial becomes.

But that doesn't stop players on both sides of the case from confiding in the reporter. People talk to Gus Bailey — and Dominick Dunne. "I've been told I look like a defrocked priest," Dunne offered by way of explanation in a recent phone conversation. "People come to me to tellmethings." And the things they tell him make for a riveting and mesmerizing portrait of a city united by its obsession with the trial of O. J. Simpson.

Before the live bn.com chat, Dominick Dunne agreed to answer some of our questions.

Q: 

Entertainment Weekly
Mouthwatering.
Time Magazine
Thoroughly absorbing.
Christopher Lehmann-Haupt
Another City, Not My Own is Dominick Dunne's O. J. Simpson book, and several obvious items of evidence advertise it as fiction....It regales the reader with all the gossip and speculation that came out of the case, as well as a number of items that are new yet altogether plausible....What keeps you devouring Mr. Dunne's pages like potato chips is the fascination of a superlative social gadfly brought to a peak of popularity by everyone's obsession with the Simpson case....The suspicion remains overwhelming that in this mischievously gossipy book, he is trying have it both ways: on the one hand, telling a certain form of truth and, on the other, shrugging off all responsibility for that truth. -- The New York Times
Library Journal
Dunne, a Vanity Fair correspondent and best-selling crime novelist, was one of the few members of the media with a full-time seat at the O.J. Simpson trial. In his new memoir-like novel, narrated ably by himself, Dunne adopts the fictional persona of Gus Bailey, a character who also represented Dunne in his novel People Like Us. As the trial begins, Bailey soon becomes a confidant to both the Goldman and Simpson families and is friendly with many important trial players including Faye Resnick, Marcia Clark, and Judge Lance Ito. Bailey conveys the sideshow atmosphere of the trial and dishes out all the gossip and speculation surrounding the case. This blend of fact and fiction has the feel of a tabloid TV show and should be purchased only where the demand for O.J. material remains high. -- Beth Farrell, Portage Cty. Dist. Lib., Ohio
Library Journal
Dunne, a Vanity Fair correspondent and best-selling crime novelist, was one of the few members of the media with a full-time seat at the O.J. Simpson trial. In his new memoir-like novel, narrated ably by himself, Dunne adopts the fictional persona of Gus Bailey, a character who also represented Dunne in his novel People Like Us. As the trial begins, Bailey soon becomes a confidant to both the Goldman and Simpson families and is friendly with many important trial players including Faye Resnick, Marcia Clark, and Judge Lance Ito. Bailey conveys the sideshow atmosphere of the trial and dishes out all the gossip and speculation surrounding the case. This blend of fact and fiction has the feel of a tabloid TV show and should be purchased only where the demand for O.J. material remains high. -- Beth Farrell, Portage Cty. Dist. Lib., Ohio
Entertainment Weekly
Mouthwatering.
Time Magazine
Thoroughly absorbing.
From the Publisher
 
"Thoroughly absorbing."—Time
 
                                                                                  
"Compulsively readable . . . deliciously wicked . . . Names are dropped as seductively as Eve's forbidden apple."—Vogue

"Mouthwatering."—Entertainment Weekly
 
"Alluring."—San Francisco Chronicle
 
"Powerful, evocative, and relentlessly entertaining."—Newsday

"Juicy . . . impossible to put down."—Dallas Morning News
 
"Mischievously gossipy."—New York Times

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307815095
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 2/8/2012
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 140,988
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Dominick Dunne, who spent three years covering the trials of O.J. Simpson, is an internationally acclaimed journalist and the best-selling author of both fiction and nonfiction, including A Season in Purgatory, An Inconvenient Woman, The Two Mrs. Grenvilles, People Like Us, and The Mansions of Limbo.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Read an Excerpt

Yes, yes, it's true. The conscientious reporter sets aside his personal views when reporting events and tries to emulate the detachment of a camera lens, all opinions held in harness, but the man with whom this narrative deals did not adhere to this dictum, at least when it came to the subject of murder, a subject with which he had had a personal involvement in the past. Consequently, his reportage was rebuked in certain quarters of both the journalistic and the legal professions, which was a matter of indifference to him. He never hesitated to speak up and point out, in print or on television, that his reportage on matters of murder was cheered by much larger numbers in other quarters. "Walk down Madison Avenue with me and see for yourself how often I am stopped by total strangers," he said in reply to a hate letter he received from an enraged man who wrote that he had vilified O.J. Simpson "through the pages of your pretentious magazine for two and a half years."

His name, as it appeared in print or when he was introduced on television, was Augustus Bailey, but he was known to his friends, and even to those who disliked him intensely, because of the way he had written about them, as Gus, or Gus Bailey. His name appeared frequently in the newspapers. His lectures were sold out. He was asked to deliver eulogies at important funerals or to introduce speakers at public events in hotel ballrooms. He knew the kind of people who said "We'll send our plane" when they invited him for weekends in distant places.

From the beginning, you have to understand this about Gus Bailey: He knew what was going to happen before it happened. His premonitions had far less to do with fact than with his inner feelings, on which he had learned to rely greatly in the last half dozen years of his life. He said over the telephone to his younger son, Zander, the son who was lost in a mountain-climbing mishap during the double murder trial of Orenthal James Simpson, "I don't know why, but I keep having this feeling that something untoward is going to happen to me."

Certainly, there are enough references to his obliteration in his journal in the months before he was found dead in the media room of his country house in Prud'homme, Connecticut, where he had been watching the miniseries of one of his novels, A Season in Purgatory. The book was about a rich young man who got away with murder because of the influence of his prominent and powerful father. Getting away with murder was a relentless theme of Gus Bailey's. He was pitiless in his journalistic and novelistic pursuit of those who did, as well as of those in the legal profession who created the false defenses that often set their clients free. That book, the miniseries of which he was watching, had brought Gus Bailey and the unsolved murder in Greenwich, Connecticut, which, to avoid a libel suit, he had renamed Scarborough Hill, a great deal of notoriety at the time of its publication, resulting in the reopening of the murder case by the police. Gus had fervently believed that the case remained unsolved because the police had been intimidated by the power and wealth of the killer's family, which extended all the way to the highest office in the land.

"It was exactly the same thing in the Woodward case," said Gus, who had written an earlier novel about a famous society shooting in the aristocratic Woodward family on Long Island in the fifties called The Two Mrs. Grenvilles. "The police were simply outdazzled by the grandeur of Elsie, whom I called Alice Grenville, and Ann Woodward got away with shooting her husband."

As always, when Gus's passions were involved in his writing, he ruffled feathers. Powerful families became upset with him. He created enemies.

"You seem to have annoyed a great many very important people," said Gillian Greenwood of the BBC, as a statement not a question, in the living room of Gus Bailey's New York penthouse, where she was interviewing him on camera for a documentary on his life called The Trials of Augustus Bailey.

Gus, who was used to being on camera, nodded agreement with her statement. "True," he replied.

"Do people ever dislike you, the way you write about them?" asked Gillian, who was producing and directing the documentary.

"There seems to be a long line," answered Gus.

"Does that bother you?" she asked.

"It's an occupational hazard, I suppose," said Gus.

"Does it bother you?" Gillian repeated.

"Sometimes yes. It depends who, really. Do I care that a killer or a rapist dislikes me? Or the lawyers who get them acquitted? Of course not. Some of those people, like Leslie Abramson, I am proud to be disliked by."

"Yes, yes, Leslie Abramson," said Gillian. "She told us you weren't in her league when we interviewed her for this documentary."

Gus, who was a lapsed Catholic, looked heavenward as he replied, "Thank you, God, that I am not in Leslie Abramson's league."

"What happens when you meet these people you write about? You must run into some of them, the way you go out so much, and the circles you travel in."

"It does happen. It's not uncommon. Mostly, it's very civilized. Averted eyes, that sort of thing. A fashionable lady in New York, Mrs. de la Renta, turned her back on me at dinner one night and spoke not a word in my direction for the hour and a half we were sitting on gold chairs in Chessy Rayner's dining room. I rather enjoyed that. Sometimes it's not quite so civilized, and there have been a few minor skirmishes in public."

"That's what I want to hear about," said Gillian.

Gus laughed. "I seem to have annoyed a rather select number of your countrymen when I wrote in Vanity Fair magazine that I believed the British aristocrat Lord Lucan, who murdered his children's nanny in the mistaken belief that she was his wife and then vanished off the face of the earth, was alive and well and being supported in exile by a group of very rich men who enjoyed the sport of harboring a killer from the law. Certain of those men were very annoyed with me."

"Oh, let me guess," said Gillian. "You annoyed the all-powerful James Goldsmith, and he's very litigious."

"Curiously enough, not Jimmy Goldsmith, who had every reason to be annoyed," said Gus. "He chose to treat the whole thing as a tremendous joke. 'Gus here thinks Lucky Lucan is hiding out at my place in Mexico,' he said one night at a party at Wendy Stark's in Hollywood, which we both attended, and everyone roared with laughter at such an absurdity."

"Who, then?" persisted Gillian.

"Selim Zilkha, a very rich Iraqi who used to live in London, had dinner with Lucky Lucan the night before the murder, which I wrote about. Now he lives in Bel Air. He made a public fuss about me at the opening night of Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, when he chastised one of his guests, the Countess of Dudley, who was visiting from London, for greeting me with a kiss on each cheek. He referred to me by a four-letter word beginning with s that I can't say on television."

"What happened?"

"The countess, who was no stranger to controversy herself, told off Zilkha in no uncertain terms," said Gus.

"She said she'd kiss whomever she wanted to kiss and, furthermore, 'Gus Bailey is an old friend of many years.'"

"Tell me more."

"Another Lucan instance happened in your country," said Gus. "Another of the men I mentioned, John Aspinall, a rich guy who owned the gambling club above Annabel's where Lord Lucan was a shill, made a terrible fuss at a Rothschild dance in London. He wanted Evelyn to throw me out."

"Were you thrown out?"

"Of course not. The way I look at it is this: If Lucan is dead, as they all claim, why don't they just laugh me off as a quack? Why do I enrage them so?"


From the Hardcover edition.
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First Chapter

CHAPTER ONE

Yes, yes, it's true. The conscientious reporter sets aside his personal views when reporting events and tries to emulate the detachment of a camera lens, all opinions held in harness, but the man with whom this narrative deals did not adhere to this dictum, at least when it came to the subject of murder, a subject with which he had had a personal involvement in the past. Consequently, his reportage was rebuked in certain quarters of both the journalistic and the legal professions, which was a matter of indifference to him. He never hesitated to speak up and point out, in print or on television, that his reportage on matters of murder was cheered by much larger numbers in other quarters. "Walk down Madison Avenue with me and see for yourself how often I am stopped by total strangers," he said in reply to a hate letter he received from an enraged man who wrote that he had vilified 0. J. Simpson "through the pages of your pretentious magazine for two and a half years."

His name, as it appeared in print or when he was introduced on television, was Augustus Bailey, but he was known to his friends, and even to those who disliked him intensely, because of the way he had written about them, as Gus, or Gus Bailey. His name appeared frequently in the newspapers. His lectures were sold out. He was asked to deliver eulogies at important funerals or to introduce speakers at public events in hotel ballrooms. He knew the kind of people who said "We'll send our plane" when they invited him for weekends in distant places.

From the beginning, you have to understand this about Gus Bailey: He knew what was going to happen before it happened. His premonitions had far less to do with fact than with his inner feelings, on which he had learned to rely greatly in the last half dozen years of his life. He said over the telephone to his younger son, Zander, the son who was lost in a mountain-climbing mishap during the double murder trial of Orenthal James Simpson, "I don't know why, but I keep having this feeling that something untoward is going to happen to me."

Certainly, there are enough references to his obliteration in his journal in the months before he was found dead in the media room of his country house in Prud'homme, Connecticut, where he had been watching the miniseries of one of his novels, A Season in Purgatory. The book was about a rich young man who got away with murder because of the influence of his prominent and powerful father. Getting away with murder was a relentless theme of Gus Bailey's. He was pitiless in his journalistic and novelistic pursuit of those who did, as well as of those in the legal profession who created the false defenses that often set their clients free. That book, the miniseries of which he was watching, had brought Gus Bailey and the unsolved murder in Greenwich, Connecticut, which, to avoid a libel suit, he had renamed Scarborough Hill, a great deal of notoriety at the time of its publication, resulting in the reopening of the murder case by the police. Gus had fervently believed that the case remained unsolved because the police had been intimidated by the power and wealth of the killer's family, which extended all the way to the highest office in the land.

"It was exactly the same thing in the Woodward case," said Gus, who had written an earlier novel about a famous society shooting in the aristocratic Woodward family on Long Island in the fifties called The Two Mrs. Grenvilles. "The police were simply outdazzled by the grandeur of Elsie, whom I called Alice Grenville, and Ann Woodward got away with shooting her husband."

As always, when Gus's passions were involved in his writing, he ruffled feathers. Powerful families became upset with him. He created enemies.

"You seem to have annoyed a great many very important people," said Gillian Greenwood of the BBC, as a statement not a question, in the living room of Gus Bailey's New York penthouse, where she was interviewing him on camera for a documentary on his life called The Trials of Augustus Bailey.

Gus, who was used to being on camera, nodded agreement with her statement. "True," he replied.

"Do people ever dislike you, the way you write about them?" asked Gillian, who was producing and directing the documentary.

"There seems to be a long line," answered Gus.

"Does that bother you?" she asked.

"It's an occupational hazard, I suppose," said Gus.

"Does it bother you?" Gillian repeated.

"Sometimes yes. It depends who, really. Do I care that a killer or a rapist dislikes me? Or the lawyers who get them acquitted? Of course not. Some of those people, like Leslie Abramson, I am proud to be disliked by."

"Yes, yes, Leslie Abramson," said Gillian. "She told us you weren't in her league when we interviewed her for this documentary."

Gus, who was a lapsed Catholic, looked heavenward as he replied, "Thank you, God, that I am not in Leslie Abramson's league."

"What happens when you meet these people you write about? You must run into some of them, the way you go out so much, and the circles you travel in."

"It does happen. It's not uncommon. Mostly, it's very civilized. Averted eyes, that sort of thing. A fashionable lady in New York, Mrs. de la Renta, turned her back on me at dinner one night and spoke not a word in my direction for the hour and a half we were sitting on gold chairs in Chessy Rayner's dining room. I rather enjoyed that. Sometimes it's not quite so civilized, and there have been a few minor skirmishes in public."

That's what I want to hear about," said Gillian.

Gus laughed. "I seem to have annoyed a rather select number of your countrymen when I wrote in Vanity Fair magazine that I believed the British aristocrat Lord Lucan, who murdered his children's nanny in the mistaken belief that she was his wife and then vanished off the face of the earth, was alive and well and being supported in exile by a group of very rich men who enjoyed the sport of harboring a killer from the law. Certain of those men were very annoyed with me."

"Oh, let me guess," said Gillian. "You annoyed the all-powerful James Goldsmith, and he's very litigious."

"Curiously enough, not Jimmy Goldsmith, who had every reason to be annoyed," said Gus. "He chose to treat the whole thing as a tremendous joke. `Gus here thinks Lucky Lucan is hiding out at my place in Mexico,' he said one night at a party at Wendy Stark's in Hollywood, which we both attended, and everyone roared with laughter at such an absurdity."

"Who, then?" persisted Gillian.

"Selim Zilkha, a very rich Iraqi who used to live in London, had dinner with Lucky Lucan the night before the murder, which I wrote about. Now he lives in Bel Air. He made a public fuss about me at the opening night of Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, when he chastised one of his guests, the Countess of Dudley, who was visiting from London, for greeting me with a kiss on each cheek. He referred to me by a four-letter word beginning with s that I can't say on television."

"What happened?"

"The countess, who was no stranger to controversy herself, told off Zilkha in no uncertain terms," said Gus. "She said she'd kiss whomever she wanted to kiss and, furthermore,'Gus Bailey is an old friend of many years."'

"Tell me more."

"Another Lucan instance happened in your country," said Gus. "Another of the men I mentioned, John Aspinall, a rich guy who owned the gambling club above Annabel's where Lord Lucan was a shill, made a terrible fuss at a Rothschild dance in London. He wanted Evelyn to throw me out."

"Were you thrown out?"

"Of course not. The way I look at it is this: If Lucan is dead, as they all claim, why don't they just laugh me off as a quack? Why do I enrage them so?"

Gus always said that the reason he knew so many people was that he had gone out to dinner nearly every night of his adult life. He was a magnet for information. "People tell me things; they always have," said Gus in an interview he did for Harper's Bazaar when A Season in Purgatory was published. "People tell me things they tell no one else." There had been a time in an earlier career when he was thought to be an unserious person by people who mattered, because of his relentless pursuit of social life. In the overall scheme of things, as Gus came to realize, it was all part of the natural order; the earlier career in film and television had been merely a stepping-stone for the vocation that he was meant to have. It was only the hindsight of years that brought about this realization. He came to understand that the failure and shame with which that earlier career ended were a necessity for him to have experienced in order to fulfill his vocation.

He ran into great numbers of people on his nightly outings. The kind of people he knew, for the most part, were either the possessors of information or friends of the possessors of information. He had an inordinate knack for meeting up with the exact person who could put him in touch with someone who had the piece of the puzzle that he needed right at that moment.

During the several years when the von Bulow case was the most discussed scandal in New York society since the Woodward scandal years before, when Ann Woodward shot and killed her rich young husband as he emerged from the shower, everyone who ever knew Claus or Sunny von Bulow had something to tell Gus about one or the other of them, when he was covering the trial for Vanity Fair magazine. "Claus cut Sunny off from all her old friends, Gus," said the social figure Diego del Vayo when they were having lunch at Mortimer's in New York. "The last time I saw Sunny was at Peggy d'Uzes's funeral at St. James. We all wanted to talk to her. None of us had seen her, but Claus kept leading her to the limousine, away from us, so no one was able to speak to her, and as the car pulled away, she waved at me out the window, and our eyes met. She looked so sad. Poor Sunny."

"Newport's split right down the center, Gus, as to whether Claus did or didn't do it," said Kay Kay Somerset at a dinner given by the Countess Lisette de Ramel at her house on Bellevue Avenue. "Most everyone's on the children's side, of course, Ala and Alex, divine kids, but there're a few very powerful ladies who are strongly behind Claus. You simply can't invite Mrs. John Nicholas Brown and Mrs. John Slocum to the same dinners; that's how bitterly the town is divided."

"You know, Gus, if you're interested, I could arrange for you to meet the children of Sunny von Bulow, Ala and Alexander von Auersperg," said Freddie Eberstadt, one of Gus's oldest friends, as the two were chatting in a corner one night at the apartment of Chessy Rayner. "Isabel and I went to Sunny's wedding in Greenwich when she married Alfie von Auersperg. We've known Ala and Alexander all their lives, practically. They're fabulous young people, not at all these druggy spoiled rich kids that Claus and his lady friend, Mrs. Reynolds, are spreading stories about. They've never spoken to anyone in the media, but Pammie Woolworth--I'm sure you know Pammie, Barbara Hutton's cousin--Pammie's one of Sunny's very best friends, and she thinks Ala and Alexander will talk to you, because of Becky, and what happened to you and Peach."

Gus, would you like to come to Newport spend the night at Clarendon Court?" asked Prince Alexander von Auersperg, the son of Sunny von Bulow. "I'll show you the closet where we found the bag. You can see for yourself the bedroom where it all happened. Nothing has been moved or changed. It's just the way it was that night. Even Mummy's Christmas presents remain unopened."

"Hello, Gus, this is Andrea Reynolds. Claus and I were wondering if you could come to lunch this Sunday, when we're all back in New York from this ghastly Providence, Rhode Island. It's at one-fifteen. We'll sit down at two. There'll be about sixteen, depending on whether Ormolu and Fran will be in town. Nine Sixty Fifth. Yes, it's the same apartment where Claus and Sunny lived. Now, I have a bone to pick with you, Gus. It is not true what you wrote, that I am wearing Sunny's clothes and jewels.

"Come over for lunch today, Gus," said Mollie Wilmot when they ran into each other on the steps of St. Edward's Catholic Church in Palm Preach, Florida, after Sunday Mass. Mollie, who wintered in Palm Beach and summered in Saratoga, had gained a great deal of notoriety when a Russian tanker crashed into the seawall of her property on Ocean Boulevard. "Dimitri of Yugoslavia's coming, and a few others you know."

Gus was then in residence at the Brazilian Court Hotel, while covering the rape trial of William Kennedy Smith for Vanity Fair. "Sunday's a writing day for me, Mollie," he answered. "My first article on the trial is due tomorrow, so I'm just going to have lunch in the room at the hotel."

"I live right next door to the Kennedy compound on Ocean Boulevard," said Mollie.

"You do?"

"You're perfectly welcome to stand on a chair next to the wall by my swimming pool, where you can see the whole backyard, where the rape happened, or didn't happen, depending on which side you're on, and everyone in town knows what side you're on."

"That is irresistible," said Gus. "Of course I'll come. How much of the Kennedy family' s there?"

"Willie's staying there, and all the sisters--Jean, Eunice, and Pat. Ethel comes from time to time," said Mollie. "You must know them, don't you, Gus?"

"I went to Ethel's wedding in Greenwich, when she married Bobby, and Peach and I used to live next to Pat in Santa Monica when she was married to Peter Lawford. I suppose that qualifies as knowing them," said Gus.

"I'd say."

"It would be mortifying if any of them saw me peeking over your wall, but I'll take the chance," said Gus.

"What happens when you see them in court?"

"We pretend we don't see one another."

"Oh, listen, Gus, is it true that Patty whatshername, the so-called rapee--"

"Alleged is the word, not so-called," said Gus.

"Alleged. Is it true she called you at the Brazilian Court the other night after you'd gone to bed and wants you to interview her when the trial's over?"

"What time's lunch?"

"Say, Gus," said his friend Anne Siegal one night during dinner at Mortimer's, just before he left town to cover the Menendez trial in California. "Herb and I have this limousine driver in Los Angeles whom we use every year when we stay at the Bel Air Hotel. Rufus. Can't remember his last name, but Herb will know. Not only is he wonderful, reliable, et cetera, et cetera, but--listen to this, Gus--he drove the Menendez brothers when they moved into the Bel Air Hotel a day or so after they murdered their parents. Apparently, those two orphans did quite a bit of partying and not too much grieving. Oh yes. Rufus will tell everything. He has some stories you wouldn't believe about that Dr. Oziel, their psychologist, when the three of them were in the backseat of the limo. Call Herb's office in the morning, and Sarah, Herb's secretary, will fax you a copy of Rufus's card."

"Say, Gus, I know this limousine driver in New Orleans who used to be a photographer in West Hollywood," said Herkie Saybrook during lunch at Herkie's club, the Knickerbocker, which Gus had called the Butterfield in People Like Us. "This guy, when he was still a photographer, took some, uh, not exactly nude, but semi-nude, nor exactly gay, but semi-gay pictures of Erik Menendez before the murders, when he was still at Beverly Hills High and wanted to be a model. Apparently young Erik wasn't quite as innocent as his lawyer Leslie Abramson would have you believe. Would you like me to put you in touch with him, or him in touch with you?"

Gus always said yes to all the introductions that were offered to him.

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Interviews & Essays

On Monday, December 15th, barnesandnoble.com welcomed Dominick Dune to discuss ANOTHER CITY, NOT MY OWN.


Moderator: Welcome, Mr. Dunne. We're glad to have you here tonight.

Dominick Dunne: I'm delighted to be here.


Tom from Elizabeth, NJ: From all I've been reading about ANOTHER CITY, your life sounds like it's been pretty interesting.... Any chance that you may someday write a memoir about your own life, going beyond THE TRIAL OF THE CENTURY?

Dominick Dunne: Yes indeed, it is very much on my mind. In fact, today at lunch someone made the same suggestion to me.


Dolores Baxter from Clayton, MO: Hello, Mr. Dunne. I saw you in your son's movie "Addicted to Love" -- great cameo and good casting job. What is Griffin working on right now? Do you have plans to appear in any more movies in the future?

Dominick Dunne: Griffin is currently at Warner Brothers, where he is preparing a new film called "Practical Magic," which will star Sandra Bullock; they will begin shooting in January. I will make a cameo in the new Joe Esterhaus movie, and I hope to do more acting.


Sherri Brown from Hartford: Why did you choose to write this book -- about a real event -- as a novel? Why nonfiction over fiction?

Dominick Dunne: I wanted my book to be different from the other 60-plus books already written on the O. J. case. My book is about me, Dominick Dunne, in the guise of Gus Bailey. The book is really a history of L.A. during the year of the O. J. case. I chose to write it in the style with which I've written it, and with which I'm very pleased.


Peter from New York: I read that you're getting a lot of heat from people who didn't like the way in which they were portrayed in the book -- like Faye Resnick. Is this true, and does this surprise you? How do you deal with people becoming upset by your books?

Dominick Dunne: This is not the first time people have been upset by one of my books. What I find is that any irritation they have, they usually get over.


Manny from San Francisco: Having been closely involved in the trial, can you explain what it was about the event that attracted the attention and ignited the passions of so many people?

Dominick Dunne: From the very beginning the story had a sordid glamour to it, which made it intoxicating for the public, and for me.


Melina from Washington, DC: The passages about your meeting with Princess Diana were particularly jarring in light of her tragic death. Did you think about how poignant that would "read" when the accident happened this summer?

Dominick Dunne: I did, yes. And I thought it was very important to keep that scene in as it happened within a year before she died. I thought she was wonderful.


Anne Selbert from South Beach: Mr. Dunne, I've always been a fan of your writing, but I'm curious to know why you presented such a biased perspective to your audience. It's clear you think O. J. is guilty, but is it fair to express such a devastating opinion when he's not been proven guilty in court?

Dominick Dunne: The last time I heard we still had free speech in America. This is what I believe and this is what I wrote. I make no apology.


Caleef from California: Some people have said that the O. J. trial was decided when the jury was selected. Do you agree?

Dominick Dunne: Certainly the selection of the jury was a major component in the acquittal. When Larry King asked me after the trial who on the defense team I thought was most responsible, I replied that I thought it was the jury consultant.


Pamela from Bryn Mawr, PA: I find it inspiring that you didn't "succeed" at your intended career (film), but later came to writing and have excelled. Do you have any words of wisdom for young people aspiring to creative fields?

Dominick Dunne: Never be afraid to make a change if the area you are concentrating on is not the one where your true talent lies. The most important thing is to get to know your own talent and to understand it.


C. Poole from Athens, Georgia: Most of your novels are based on real people and events; do you feel that life is truly stranger that fiction?

Dominick Dunne: Nothing that I could make up in my mind would rival what I see on a day-to-day basis in real life. That is why all my novels are based on real events and real people.


Rachel from Sisna.com: Hello, Mr. Dunne! Is your drive to expose the mishaps of our country's justice system the residual effect of your daughter's murder? How is it that these murderers can go free?

Dominick Dunne: I had never attended a trial until I attended the trial of the man who killed my daughter. It was an eye-opening experience for me to see that the rights of the man on trial exceeded the rights of his victim. That event has had much influence on my writing about the events in America among the rich and powerful.


Donby from Ohio: I know that you were at the O. J. trial every day. But since every journalist wanted to be there and the space was small, how did you get to be one of the lucky few?

Dominick Dunne: My seat was assigned to me by Judge Lance Ito. He felt that by placing me next to the Goldman family -- that because of the similar situation in my own life, I would not interfere with their own grief.


Paul from Morris Plains, NJ: Were you at all surprised by the failures or successes of the books that came out of the O. J. trial? I mean, Chris Darden's book was the top selling, with such a relatively small advance, while Marcia Clark's book did nowhere near as well as anticipated.

Dominick Dunne: With so many books coming out, there were bound to be hits and misses, and there were far more misses than hits. To me, the best two trial books were THE RUN OF HIS LIFE by Jeffrey Toobin and AMERICAN TRAGEDY by Larry Schiller, but I also enjoyed Detective Mark Fuhrman's book and Chris Darden's book.


Ellen from Anywhere: Did you make the book fictional to protect yourself from some of the revelations in the book?

Dominick Dunne: No. I made myself fictional because Gus Bailey ceases to exist at the end of the book, and Dominick Dunne is still here.


Elaine from Austin, TX: I read recently that Faye is pretty mad about her depiction in the book. Have you heard from her?

Dominick Dunne: I have always been a great supporter of Faye Resnick; I admired her the first time I met her. There was one paragraph in the book which she didn't like, and I have removed it.


Lesley from Portland: ANOTHER CITY, NOT MY OWN includes a lot of reflection of the life of "Gus," then he's killed at the end. Is this an indication that this might be your last novel?

Dominick Dunne: No, it is not my last novel. The death of Gus signifies only that I'm not going to cover any more murder trials. I became too emotionally involved, and I don't want to go through that experience again.


Claude Piers from Ann Arbor: Do you think it's possible that O. J. will reestablish his career as a sports announcer? What do you see in his future?

Dominick Dunne: I think it is highly unlikely that he will reestablish his career in this country. It is hard for me to visualize what his future will be. When he appeared as a guest on a television show in New York, a third of the audience walked out.


Tom from Cleveland: Would you ever want to cover a trial, major or minor, again?

Dominick Dunne: Yes, I will cover a trial, major or minor, but not a murder trial. If the Paula Jones trial is not settled beforehand, I plan to cover that trial.


Karla Jean from Chicago: Why is L.A. not your "own city"?

Dominick Dunne: Because I don't live there. I live in New York and Connecticut. I lived there for 24 years but left in 1979 and reestablished my New York residence.


Karen from Cucamonga: Some people have called it the trial of the century. But what about the Lindbergh kidnapping trial?

Dominick Dunne: I was a little boy during the Lindbergh trial, but I remember the frenzy that it caused. There's no explanation why the O. J. trial was the "trial of the century" except that it was probably the most discussed of any American trial, and it went on the longest.


Michael from Port Clinton: I found your commentary to be interesting and valuable in capturing what was going on at the trial. If you had one question to ask O. J. Simpson to which you knew he would respond truthfully, what would it be?

Dominick Dunne: I don't think O. J. Simpson is capable of responding truthfully. I am often asked this question. During the civil trial, I watched him lie hour after hour -- he is not capable of telling the truth.


John from Houston: Thanks for your book. I finished reading it on Saturday and it was fascinating. The one question I will ask is: Did you actually meet Andrew Cunanan several times? The one question I will not ask (unlike most of those in the book) is: Were Marcia Clark and Chris Darden having an affair?

Dominick Dunne: I never met Andrew Cunanan. I had always had a problem about who would do away with Gus Bailey. During the writing of the book, Andrew Cunanan began his cross-country killing spree. At that time I thought back to some of the events I had attended during the trial, and I placed him in the background of a few of those events -- he was not at any of them, but he might have been, as that was the world he aspired to.


Jon Battle from Plano, TX: You talk about many things the defense had "over" the court, like Ito's wife and Fuhrman. Was this knowledge held by the prosecution? Why didn't they ever use any of this?

Dominick Dunne: I really don't know. I never understood why the prosecution didn't use the freeway chase. There's a lot about the prosecution I never understood.


Lee Ann Kelley from Columbia, MO: I will never forget the dumbfounded expression on your face as the verdict was read. Were you really surprised, or just expressing your disapproval of the verdict?

Dominick Dunne: I was really surprised.


John L. from NYC: What do you know about O.J.'s note that was read while he was on the lam -- was it mentioned at the trial?

Dominick Dunne: Simpson's so-called suicide note was never introduced into the trial. I know no more about it than you do.


Parker from Houston: Since you have such insight into the "trial of the century," I wonder if you have insight into the "mystery of the '90s" -- what is going on with JonBenet Ramsey's murder investigation? Do you believe the Ramseys are as guilty as they smell?

Dominick Dunne: I have not really studied the JonBenet Ramsey case. I think it's possible that Mr. and Mrs. Ramsey could be protecting their young son; it's the only explanation I can think of that would keep them together. Please note, this is only a theory -- I have no proof of this.


Kathleen from Los Angeles: Have you had any contact with Greta Van Sustern since the day the not-guilty verdict was read?

Dominick Dunne: Indeed I have. Greta and I made up our differences during the civil trial, and we have subsequently become friends. I have had several complimentary phone calls from her about my book.


Kathleen from Los Angeles: Did you ever go online to discuss the O. J. trial?

Dominick Dunne: I don't think I went online during the trial, but I have discussed it several times online since the trial.


Matt from Seattle: What is your favorite of the books you've written?

Dominick Dunne: My favorite is always the book I have most recently finished.


Howard from Long Island City: What is next for you?

Dominick Dunne: First I am going back to Vanity Fair to write some articles. I am in the process of doing a coffee-table book based on my scrapbook from the '50s, and I'm also in the planning stages of a novel in the Somerset Maugham fashion.


Kate Leahy from NYC: Do you think the O. J. trial will have a long-term impact on race relations in the U.S.? I am despairing at this point. Should I be?

Dominick Dunne: Yes, I do. I think at some future time, it will looked on as a main focal point in the breakdown of race relations in our country.


Debra from Los Angeles: Who is your favorite author?

Dominick Dunne: My favorite author is Trollope, the 19th-century English writer.


Moderator: Thanks for indulging our curiosity about the "trial of the century." Goodnight and happy holidays.

Dominick Dunne: Thank you very much -- I've enjoyed the questions. Happy holiday to all of you!


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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2007

    interesting

    if dunne based bailey on himself i think i would have hated him. and everyone famous in the book seemed to be his friend.took the word friend to a whole new level.the book is interesting though.dunne is just so shameless, thats what i hate about the book- the way he feels so self important.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2007

    Awesome reading - The Best of the Best

    I personally found this book hard to put down - the content was mind riveting & his other books of which I have read them all were equally as outstanding. The plot kept you wanting to finish the whole book at once.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 9, 2012

    Fantastic book. have read most of his books. This one is except

    Fantastic book. have read most of his books. This one is exceptional. Very well written and detailed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2006

    Super ending twist...

    This is the first Dunne novel I've read and to be honest, the OJ trial as a subject didn't thrill me. Neither did Dunne's constant name-dropping... but somehow the storytelling hooked me and by the end I was riveted... then the ending took me completely by surprise. Well done.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2005

    the worst book ever written

    I'll admit I was fascinated by the OJ murder case at the time and completely agreed with Mr Dunnes' assessment of his guilt, but this is the worst piece of self promoting, name dropping drivel through which I have ever had the misfortune to slog. No wonder his brother Gregory can't stand him.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2003

    Great book- bad ending

    After I read this book, I wanted to know more about Dominck Dunne. I was however, very dissapointed in the ending. I felt that if it was a memior it should have stayed true. He is the true King of name droppers. I felt like a fly on the wall, eavesdropping on his conversations with the rich, famous, and powerful people of the world.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2001

    Dunne: What a man, what a writer

    Gus Bailey a man with a moral compass that is remnant of old, whined and dined by the LA elite he does not succomb to being socially correct in the mist of the OJ saga. As a writer for Vanity Fair Magazine Gus had front row seats during the event of the century. With humor and candidness he lets the reader see how unhumane our country has become. How racially torn our country still is, how justice isn't about right or wrong but about glamour and bias. Hurrah,Hurrah for Dominick Dunne the voice on conscience that we so desprately need. Oh, by the way this is fiction....well kinda

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2001

    Superlative Non-fiction/Fiction

    I love the way the author relates the factual aspects of the trial, all the while doing what Dominick Dunne does best, mingling with the rich and famous. The multi-layered culture in Los Angeles, where the lives of film personalities, society figures and the average person often overlap, is portrayed with accuracy. In the guise of Augustus Bailey, it is less painful for Dominick Dunne to reveal his deepest feelings about the murder of his daughter and his frailties as a human being. This book is as much about the author's dealing with his past as it is about O. J. Simpson.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2009

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    Posted February 24, 2010

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