About Me

My photo
Marlan Warren is a journalist, novelist, editor, playwright, screenwriter, blogger, website designer, and publicist. She is the author of the fictionalized memoir, Roadmaps for the Sexually Challenged: All’s Not Fair in Love or War and the AIDS memoir, Rowing on a Corner. She reviews for Midwest Book Review. Marlan is also a filmmaker.

You can check out but you can never leave...


My life, your life, our lives inside and outside of Los Angeles and its angels.

Friday, June 26, 2015


Title: Wrestling with the Devil
Authors: Antonio Russo and Tonya Russo Hamilton
Publisher: Gemelli Press
Date of Pub.: April 15, 2012
Genre: Memoir / Italian American / Italian Immigrant
ISBN 978-0982-102398 (Hard Cover)
ASIN: B008EWZ0TW (Kindle)

I had an outlet for my demons.
--Antonio Russo

Be not fooled by the staring young boy on the cover or the word "wrestling" in the title of Wrestling with the Devil (A Story of Sacrifice, Survival and Triumph from the Hills of Naples to the Hall of Fame) by Antonio Russo as told to his daughter, Tonya Russo Hamilton. This is a memoir with something for everyone, Italian Wrestler or not.

Wrestling with the Devil takes us along the simple-but-not-easy path that Russo took to Honor and the fulfillment of his Destiny. If filmmaker Martin Scorcese had not made a film about a raging bull of a boxer who cannot love, and made this story instead, it would have given American audiences a rare "insider" view of one determined man's journey from Italian boyhood to an Italian "American Graffiti-meets-Rebel Without a Cause" immigrant adolescence in Portland, Oregon to a miraculous college wrestling scholarship and finally, to a successful coaching career and induction into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.

We are treated to a slice-of-Italian-American-Life in the 50s and 60s with all the warmth and family confusion, goodwill, great food and "immigrant drive for success" that such a cultural experience often entails.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Friday, June 12, 2015

CMC's Veteran Hair Etcetra and Hip Twist Salon to Combine Beauty Forces

CMC's Veteran Hair Etcetra and Hip Twist Salon to Combine Beauty Forces

For the past 50 years, visitors entering the Fashion District's California Market Center (CMC) may not have realized that a beauty salon is on the second floor, quietly servicing industry celebrities who slip in and out, and anyone else in need of beautifying. Expert stylist Connie Moran was there two years after it opened, and took it over from the second owner 38 years ago, renaming it Hair Shop Etcetra. This month Moran announced the sad news that the high-end salon will close its doors forever on June 31. And the glad news that it will reopen July 1 in the Twist by Oliver salon located downstairs in the outer lobby of the CMC.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Pro Golfers' AssoPGA Tour Style Report's Dads & Grads Gift Guide features Alial Fital Pop Art Polos: "Hip and sophisticated."

This month the unique boutique brand Alial Fital--the innovative golf apparel line for the "Stand Apart Gentleman"--found itself at the top of the list in the PGA Tour Style Insider "Dads and Grads Gift Guide." The guide suggests 15 gift ideas for the well-dressed golfer, including designs by Stance, ECCO J. Lindsberg, Dunny, Puma, Devereux and QED.

"I suggested Alial Fital's pop art collection because it is hip enough for the grad and sophisticated enough for the dad," said Greg Monteforte who helms the PGA Tour Style Report. "Alial Fital styles cross demographic lines thanks to their clean aesthetics, unique details and contemporary fits."

Pop art and golf may not be the first association that pops into most people's minds, but this has not been the case with Alial Fital's "artisanal designer," Gibran Hamdan who has always felt drawn to that artistic movement of the mid to late 1950s with its bold colors, distinct shapes and playful themes.

Monday, June 1, 2015

"SILENCE REVIEW": Quick, lively & poignant read about Teen Queen's Royal Hunt for Biological Father (Lakeview Novel Series Sequel)

     Like all the Lakeview novels, Silence emphasizes the vital importance of family and "extended family" connections. This quick, lively and poignant read explores that special longing felt by many adopted children: to know their biological parents. This novelette sequel to Hush brings back Blakely Henry, now a graduate of Lakeview Academy who juggles her new life as queen of a fictional Mediterranean country with college and her hunky fiancĂ©. Her adoptive American parents are on hand to help out, and it's touching how supportive they are of Blakely's deep need to meet her biological father.

     Author Stacey R. Campbell has meticulously crafted characters who come to life on the page so well that you feel you know them. She keeps the tone light, and is unafraid of tackling painful memories or events that ensue as Blakely's search intensifies. Details such as the excellent pasta dishes the castle cook can whip up for her pleasure enhance the pleasures of this story which has one foot in "fairy tale" and the other in "reality."

     What makes this journey so much fun is how much everyone involved cares. Blakely's whole family plus her fiancĂ© accompany her on this tough journey which leads them through some beautiful parts of France. As always, Campbell writes multiple points of view, and tips us off to the Truth before the heroine discovers it--building suspense about what will happen after all the cards are on the table.

     Silence is glamorous fun (how much easier our lives would be if we all had our own "royal stylist"), and at the same time, it is down to earth about skeletons in family closets and how they choose to handle them. This is one of those sequels you can read without reading the novel that it follows (Hush), although it will make you want to go back and read the full story of how the adopted Blakely Henry came to find out she is the only surviving blood relative of an assassinated monarchy that now needs her help.

Title: Silence (Novella 1, Lakeview Novel Series)
Author: Stacey R. Campbell
Publisher: Green Darner Press (May 28, 2015)
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Amazon Kindle Only   55 pages       $.99
Available at: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YGCAR1K

Search This Blog