Mr. Davis is an old script writer who knows the Hollywood that was -- ""a hard life. . . a cruel, unfair, filthy business"" when you come to that dead end on Sunset Boulevard. This (intended to be the first of a trilogy) is seen through the ""dark, imploring eyes"" of Violet Lang, still hoping in her boie de rose suit -- still remembering her 22 years at the top -- and poor Paul Ellison whose ""artistic conscience"" is nudzhing him into doing something really creative, like Cherry Orchard. Perhaps he will (if you ever get around to Volume II) but for now Violet Lang has been glad to settle for a $2500 role as a society matron in a murder mystery. Not much -- just ashes of old ticket stubs with the scent of lilac Violet always emanates.