A grab gab of star-studded reminiscences spanning forty years in the life of that veteran gossip columnist who nearly earned a Purple Heart for biting Louella Parsons in Chasen's. Skolsky has done more than merely cover the Schwab's scene. He gave ""Oscar""--""the most important man in Hollywood""--his name; came up with the idea for, and later produced, The Jolson Story; helped launch Diahann Carroll; and served as a longtime ""confidant and counselor"" to a ""lost"" Marilyn Monroe. The author's memory lane ranges from famous feuds (de Havilland/Fontaine; Martin/Lewis) to child actors (Coogan, Rooney, Temple) to the myth-shattering disclosure that Lana Turner was actually discovered in the Top Hat Malt Shop and not Schwab's. There's some speculation here over the (suicide?) death of Paul Bern, Jean Harlow's (homosexual?) husband. . . a poignant profile of Gable. . . and even one of those rare glimpses of ""Gee Gee"" (Garbo). Quaintly unpretentious, soothingly inoffensive--if Hollywood's indeed ""held together by fear and celluloid,"" a Sid Skolsky surely won't tear it up.