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Hot Toddy: The True Story of Hollywood's Most Sensational Murder
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Hot Toddy: The True Story of Hollywood's Most Sensational Murder

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  217 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
Fifty years after the notorious Thelma Todd murder case was closed unsolved, Andy Edmonds fingers the killer. Set against the Hollywood industry where Toddy worked and played--an industry infiltrated by the Mob. 21 photos.
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published May 1st 1989 by William Morrow & Company (first published January 1st 1989)
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C!NDY  L00
Organized Crime, goes Hollywood in this captivating mystery of the unsolved murder (or was it murder?) of well known comedic actress Thelma Todd. Author Andy Edmonds, does another outstanding job on this biography and true life crime. I felt as though I'd been transported back to 1930's Hollywood with gangsters, glittering gowns, and wisecracking platinum blonds. It's Hollywood nonfiction crime noir at its best. Thelma Todd, was not only known for her comic work in movies (Hal Roach productions. ...more
Aug 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Meagan, Jenn, Mom
What an interesting story. I had read about it before but the books I read only included it as a blurb and pretty much said it was a suicide. Fascinating to read how the Mafia infiltrated Hollywood at that time and how back in the day you really could get away with murder. This murder would never have gone unsolved in our day of forensics etc...and of course there is that little thing of the DA being on the payroll of Lucky Luciano.
Nov 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Rachel by: Melissa
I was told by others that this bio/ crime investigation book was a bit gossipy but I did not get that while reading it. I loved the in depth background to her life and then a look into her murder. I learned a lot about Lucky L. and other gangsters. And while the author is pushing his take on the murder as being the truth, I think people need to always be open to other options.
Samantha Glasser
Mar 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
There isn't a lot of biographical information out there about Thelma Todd outside of a few mentions of her comedic talent and her untimely death. This book is the best resource to find out about how she came to Hollywood and became a popular comedienne before her tragic end. There is also a lot information about the underworld of Hollywood which led to Todd's demise. I found this book to be very informative.
Mark Duggan
Apr 10, 2018 rated it did not like it
This is a very unfortunate publication along with the ridiculous film that was produced from it. Without a doubt the most horrendous bio I have ever read and should be, along
with the film, considered nearly pure fiction. If you want to read the true details of the Thelma Todd tragedy read the well documented "Testimony of a Death: Thelma Todd: Mystery, Media and Myth in 1935 Los Angeles"

Sad that this author perpetuates such garbage.
Craig Owens
Oct 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An enjoyable book.
Ana Aguilar
Jul 07, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a recount of a very short and sad life.
Tiffany Day
Jul 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
The subject material is interesting, but the execution is lacking. A lot of this reads as supposition and little is sourced, particularly the conclusion on who murdered her and how it went down. The first half, which first describes the murder, the grand jury testimony, and Thelma's rise from small town girl to star, is very good. Somewhere just past the middle it changes course, and several chapters are spent on the history of the mob (probably more details than were anywhere needed). Then it j ...more
Nov 19, 2012 rated it liked it
Parts of this book are poorly-written and possibly largely fictitious, but I'm giving it a high rating because of the obvious passion for Thelma that the author conveys, and my own passion for Thelma that drove me to research more about her. Some aspects of the mystery are not fully explored in this book, which is a shame, and there are perhaps too many pages devoted to explaining the details of the underworld goings-on of the time, but the core issues surrounding Thelma's life and death are dis ...more
I finally bought this book after years of having it on my "to read" list. Definitely worth the wait. The author did a great job of balancing Thelma's story and LA's history. Great background on the mob, too. This book really broke my heart, though. The men she loved were always the ones trying to bring her down, or just bleeding her dry financially and emotionally. Even her father used her.

Back during this time period in Los Angeles, the LAPD was incredibly corrupt, so there was absolutely NO wa
Bob Colleary
Dec 22, 2016 rated it it was ok
It's fiction disguised as non-fiction. The author decided what probably happened, then bent the narrative to support her theory. The book is unevenly written, but the worst part is that it's sold as a "true" story when it clearly is no such thing, page after page of guesswork and long detailed "conversations" from nearly 100 years ago that clearly took place only inside the author's head. The "sources" are never specified except for ONE -- whose identity is kept secret. Oh please.
Jul 30, 2011 added it
I really liked this. I don't know what has happened since this book was written as far as finding out if the suspected killer really is the killer. Kind of hard to know when most people involved are no longer on this earth.
Nov 30, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Film Lovers, biography fans
Shelves: biography
Andy Edmonds explores the still unsolved murder of Thelma Todd. Andy Edmonds is not a good writer; she is sloppy in her research and doesn't back up her theories, but the book is quite readable for all this. Just take the result with a grain of salt.
May 22, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: biography, movies
A supposed examination of the murder of Thelma Todd in the 1930s. The biographical aspect was interesting (her death is particularly tragic) but the book as a whole is fairly bad. Badly written, absolutely no sources cited, fabricated dialogue - bad all the way around. Todd deserved better.
very interesting book - it makes you think of who really was the culprit, and even today - decades after her death, you are still wondering

captain america
Feb 11, 2014 rated it did not like it
all i wanted to read about was her career, not this dumb muck-raking titillation-treatise
Nancy Loe
Aug 11, 2007 rated it did not like it
Almost unreadable. The real book about this murder has yet to be written.
Carol Lynn Scherling
Oct 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Hot Toddy is a great read that provides a plausible scenerio on the death of Hollywood's Ice-Cream Blonde.
Duncan Hendy
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