1955 1st edition; Doubleday & Company publishers, New York; hardbound in black glossy boards with vivid white lettering on spine; quite good condition with unmarked pages; no dust jacket.
Marjorie Morningstar is a 1955 novel by Herman Wouk, about a woman who wants to become an actress. Marjorie Morningstar has been called "the first Jewish novel that was popular and successful, not merely to a Jewish audience but to a general one". In 1958, the book was the basis for a Hollywood feature movie starring Natalie Wood, also titled Marjorie Morningstar.
Marjorie Morgenstern, born 1916, is a New York Jewish girl in the 1930s. She is bright, beautiful, and popular, with many admirers. Her father is a prosperous businessman who has recently moved his family from a poorer, ethnically Jewish neighborhood in the Bronx to Manhattan's Upper West Side. Her mother hopes that the change of neighborhood will help Marjorie marry a man with a brighter future.
Marjorie aspired to become an actress, using "Marjorie Morningstar" as a stage name. ("Morningstar" is the literal translation of "Morgenstern" from the original German.) She begins with her school's (Hunter College) production of The Mikado, and lands the title role. As a result, she meets Marsha Zelenko, who will become her best friend (for a while). Marsha encourages Marjorie in her quest, and helps her get a job as a dramatic counselor at the summer camp, where Marsha teaches arts and crafts.
During the summer Marsha persuades Marjorie to accompany her on an excursion to South Wind, an exclusive resort with a staff of professional entertainers. There Marjorie meets Noel Airman, an older man who has won some fame as a composer, as well as Wally Wronken, a younger man who hopes to become a playwright.
Marjorie idolizes Noel, who can sing, dance, compose, and speak several languages. They begin a relationship...