Lucky

Mass Market Paperback | February 1, 1998

byJackie Collins

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Jackie Collins' sizzling #1 bestseller -- and her most sensational heroine!
From Chances to Dangerous Kiss, bestselling superstar Jackie Collins has spun the incredible saga of the extraordinary Lucky Santangelo. A hot-blooded beauty in love with power and hungry for pleasure, Lucky's dazzling odyssey -- and her trail of enemies -- sweeps from the casinos of Las Vegas to a private Greek island, from cutthroat Hollywood to chic New York and Paris.
She's a gambler and a lover. She's wild, savvy, and proud. She's

Lucky

...and you'll never forget her.

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From Our Editors

THE FABULOUS HEROINE OF CHANCES RETURNS. SHE'S A HOT-BLOODED BEAUTY IN LOVE WITH POWER, HUNGRY FOR PLEASURE... WILD, NOTORIOUS, TROUBLE... SHE'S... LUCKY With the sensual grace of a panther, Lucky Santangelo prowled her Las Vegas casino, restless, ready, eager for action. That night began a dazzling odyssey, filled with dangerous passi...

From the Publisher

Jackie Collins' sizzling #1 bestseller -- and her most sensational heroine! From Chances to Dangerous Kiss, bestselling superstar Jackie Collins has spun the incredible saga of the extraordinary Lucky Santangelo. A hot-blooded beauty in love with power and hungry for pleasure, Lucky's dazzling odyssey -- and her trail of enemies -- sw...

From the Jacket

From Chances to Dangerous Kiss, international bestselling author Jackie Collins has spun the incredible saga of the extraordinary Lucky Santangelo. A hot-blooded beauty in love with power and hungry for pleasure, Lucky's dazzling odyssey -- and her trail of enemies -- sweeps from the casinos of Las Vegas to a private Greek island, from...

There have been many imitators, but only Jackie Collins can tell you what really goes on in the fastest lane of all -- from Beverly Hills bedrooms to the raunchy streets of Hollywood.With 200 million copies of her books sold in more than 40 countries, Jackie Collins is one of the world's top-selling writers. In a series of controversi...

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see all books by Jackie Collins
Format:Mass Market PaperbackDimensions:624 pages, 6.75 × 4.19 × 1.4 inPublished:February 1, 1998Publisher:Pocket Books

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0671023489

ISBN - 13:9780671023485

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Customer Reviews of Lucky

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Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read! Jackie Collins was an amazing author, I have read most of her books and this one does not disappoint! Once you start with her books you can't stop! Lucky was another great book!
Date published: 2016-11-24

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Chapter One:Lennie Golden had not set foot in Vegas for thirteen years, even though itwas the city of his conception, birth and first seventeen years of life. He looked around as he stepped off the plane, sniffed the air and took a deepbreath. The place still smelled the same. The airport was doing a roaring trade in visiting gamblers, tourists and middleAmerica out to have fun. Fat male butts waddled alongside plump, peroxideladies in polyester pant suits and fake jewelry. Small children whined andcomplained. Traveling hookers in halter tops, hot pants tightly outlining theircrotches, arrived to do business. Swarthy foreigners clutched black leatherattaché cases and breathed garlic over their accompanying yellow-hairedmistresses. Jess was there to meet him. Five feet tall, startlingly pretty, she still hadthe air of a tomboy about her -- which is what she had been at school. She hadalways preferred to hang out with the boys. Especially Lennie. They had beenbest friends since first grade, their somewhat unexpected and platonicrelationship surviving and getting stronger each year -- even though they didn'tsee much of each other since he had moved from Vegas to New York. They made an ill-assorted couple. Lennie, so tall and lanky, with dirty-blondhair and ocean-green eyes. An overgrown Robert Redford with more than a touchof Chevy Chase. And Jess, petite and wide-eyed, with a mop of orange hair,freckles and a Playboy centerfold body in miniature. She hurled herself into his arms. "It's so good to see you! You lookfantastic. For a guy who spends his life screwin' around I don't know how youdo it." "Hey --" He swung her in the air like a rag doll. "Look who's taking." She giggled and hugged him tightly. "I love you madly, Lennie Golden. Welcomeback." "I love you too, monkey face." "Don't call me that!" she screeched. "I'm married now. I'm respectable. I got akid, the whole bit. So c'mon, Lennie -- treat me like a lady." He burst out laughing. "If you're a lady, I'm Raquel Welch." She grabbed his arm. "You got great tits!" Laughingly they strolled toward the exit. "So how was the flight?" she asked, trying to grab his battered suitcase. He wrestled it away from her. "Long and boring. If God had meant us to fly he'dhave given us more stewardesses. "Didja score?" She winked knowingly. "Affirmative." "Really?" "Would I lie to you?" he deadpanned. She laughed She had a maniacal guffaw that caused people to turn and stare."You'd lie to the Pope if you thought it would get you through the day." "And there she goes..." he singsonged. "Who? Where?" Automatically she turned to check out his conquest. A nun walkedserenely by. "I told you my tastes are changing," he said gravely. "Very funny!" She aimed a punch at his stomach. He held up a protesting hand."Lay off. I just had surgery of the tongue." "Huh?" "Remember the taping of the 'Lee Bryant Show'? The one I told you I wasdoing?" "Yeah." "They cut my four-minute spot to thirty seconds. If you fart you miss me." She frowned. "Schmucks. They know from nothin'. Anyway, you're back in Vegasnow. Your kind of comedy schtick's gonna kill 'em here." "Oh sure, in the lounge of the Magiriano Hotel I'm really going to cause ariot." "It's a change of scene. Could be just what you need. Who knows whatit'll lead to?" "C'mon, less. You sound like my agent. Do this shit, that piece of crap, andbefore you know it you'll have a regular spot on Carson." "Your so-called agent is a New York jerk-off artist." She wrinkled her nose."You're a great comedian. I should be handling you. I mean, I gotyou this gig, didn't I?" "What do you want -- ten percent?" She laughed wildly. "You think I wanna give up the title of best blackjackdealer in Vegas? You think I'm crazy or somein'? Stick your commission wherethe sun don't give you a tan!" They were passing a ladies room. "Wait a sec," she said. "I'm so excited to seeyou I gotta take a pee." He laughed and leaned against the wall while she dashed inside. Jess was afriend indeed. He had called her two weeks ago and said he had to get out ofNew York. "No problem," she replied without hesitation. "Matt Traynor, the entertainmentdirector of the hotel I work at, has the hots for me. Send me a tape and I'llget him to hire you." He had sent the tape. She had come through with the gig. Some good friend. Idly he watched a dark-haired girl in black leather pants and a red shirtstride by. She cut through the crowd as if she owned the place. He liked herstyle, not to mention her body. Jesus! Was he free yet? He and Eden had split six months ago, yet every time hesaw an attractive woman he couldn't help comparing the two. He was still doingit. Eden Antonio and he were unfinished business -- why didn't he just faceit? Jess emerged from the ladies room and squeezed his hand. "It is sooogreat to have you here," she said. "I want to hear all abouteverything." "Hey -- everything is a career going nowhere and a fucked up sex life." "Sounds exciting. So what else is new?" They were outside now and the desert heat enveloped them. "Jeez!" he exclaimed. "I forgot how hot it is here." "Aw, stop bitching. You could do with a tan. You look like NightclubCharlie." They approached a dented red Camaro waiting in the parking lot. "I see you're still an ace driver," he remarked dryly, throwing his suitcase inthe trunk. "I didn't do that," she replied indignantly. "My old man can't drivearound the block without gettin' into trouble." He wondered what kind of man took on crazy Jess for a wife. Someone special, hehoped. "C'mon," she said, sliding behind the steering wheel "Wayland is makin' lunch.The baby's makin' noise, and Lennie, you are gonna love ithere. It always was your kinda town." He nodded grimly. "Yeah. That's what I'm afraid of." Lucky Santangelo stood out as she strode briskly through the crowd at theairport. She was a strikingly beautiful woman of twenty-eight with an unrulymass of jet curls, black gypsy eyes, a wide sensual month, a deep suntan and alean, looselimbed body. She wore soft, black, leather pants, a red, silk shirtcasually unbuttoned to the limit, and a wide belt studded with silver. Fromher ears hung plain, silver hoops and on her right hand was a square-cut diamondof such size and brilliance that one would be forgiven for thinking it was notreal. It was. No conventional beauty, she had a style and bearing all her own. Confidencewafted from her like the exotic scent she drenched herself with. "Hey, Boogie." With affection she greeted the skinny, long-haired man inarmy fatigues who stepped forward to greet her. "How's everything?" "The same," he said, low-voiced, his slit eyes darting this way and that,observing everyone and everything as he took her black leather tote bag and thecheck claim for the rest of her luggage "No exciting news? No gossip?" she questioned, grinning, delighted to beback. He had gossip, but he didn't want to be the one to give it to her. She talked excitedly as they walked toward the stretch, Mercedes limousineparked on a red line. "I think I put it all together, Boog. The Atlantic City deal is ready to fly.And I did it. Me! All I need is an okay from Gino and the record'll spin. Ifeel great!" He was pleased to see her in such a good mood. He nodded and said, "If you wantit you'll get it. I never doubted you." Her eyes gleamed with excitement. "Atlantic City," she said. "We'll build ahotel to beat everything!" "You'll do it," he agreed, opening up the rear door. "Hey," she complained, "you know I always sit up front with you." He switched doors, settled her in the passenger seat and loped off to get therest of the baggage. Gino Santangelo awoke with a start. For a moment he was disoriented, but onlyfor a moment. He might be old, but he certainly wasn't senile, thank God.Besides, seventy-two nowadays was not exactly fertilizing-oranges time. Infact, last night in bed, he had felt like a kid again. And why not, with SusanMartino for company? Susan Martino. Widow of the late, great Tiny Martino, a multitalented veteranof television and the movies. A comedian whose name ranked alongside Keaton,Chaplin and Benny. Tiny had died of a stroke two years previously. Gino hadattended the funeral in Los Angeles, conveyed his respects to the widow-and hadnot seen her again until she turned up in Vegas three weeks ago at a charitybenefit. Now he was waking up in her bed for the fifth morning in a row, andfeeling no pain. As if she knew he was thinking sweet thoughts about her, Susanentered the room. She was an attractive, well-groomed woman offorty-nine, who looked at least ten years younger. Her eyes were pale chinablue, cheekbones high, skin white and smooth. Her silver-blond hair was neatlydrawn back in a chignon, even though it was only nine in the morning. She worea white silk peignoir over her understated but perfect body, and she carried atray with a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice, a soft-boiled egg, and twopieces of lightly buttered toast cut into thin slices. "Good morning, Gino," she said. He struggled to sit up, pushing his hands through his unruly black hair, which,although graying at the temples, was just as thick and curly as it had been inhis youth. He was still a man to be reckoned with. Age had by no means dulledhis vitality and ceaseless energy, although a nearly fatal heart attack a yearago had slowed him down a mite. Like Susan, he did not look his age. "What's all this?" He indicated the laden tray. "Breakfast in bed." "And what did I do to deserve it?" She smiled. "What didn't you do." He grinned, remembering. "Yeah. Not bad for an old man, huh?" She placed the tray in front of him and sat on the edge of the bed. "You're thebest lover I ever had," she said gravely. He liked that. He liked it a lot. Susan Martino was no tramp, but she'd had areputation of sorts before marrying Tiny Martino twenty-five years earlier. AlyKhan, Rubirosa, even Sinatra were rumored to be in her past. Enough for Gino tofeel more than flattered by her compliment. Not, of course, that he had ever questioned her about her past, just as she hadnever asked him about his. "I wanna know somethin'," he said, interested enough now to start findingout. "What?" she replied, carefully peeling the shell from his egg. "When you were married to Tiny -- you ever cheat around?" She did not hesitate."Never," she replied firmly. "Although why I should tell you . . . He suddenly felt possessive of this woman. This classy blond lady. And how manyof them were there around today? Women. Love 'em and leave 'em had been his life's motto. With very fewexceptions. In the last year, taking them to bed had become boring. Anotherbody. Another pretty face. Another thousand-dollar bill for a trinket becausehe didn't like to dismiss them empty-handed. When they left Gino Santangelo'sbed he wanted them to know they had been somewhere. Not that he had topay. Ever. The very thought was crazy. "Can we spend the day together?" Susan asked, dipping a sliver of toast intothe egg and feeding it to him. He was just about to say yes when he remembered. Lucky was coming back today.His daughter. Beautiful, wild Lucky -- with his eyes and his deep olive skinand his jet hair and his zest for living. How could he have forgotten? She hadbeen away for three weeks on a business trip to the East. He would be missingher badly if it weren't for Susan. "Why don't we make it tomorrow? I got things to do today," he said, pushing thefork away. "Oh." She looked disappointed. He wondered how Lucky would feel about Susan's joining them for dinner and knewinstinctively that she would hate it. He could understand. After all, it washer first night back, and they would have a lot to talk about. There was time enough to introduce Susan into their lives, and he fullyintended to. Susan Martino was too much a lady to be just a one-week stand. During the drive from the airport Lucky continued to fill Boogie in on hertrip. He was more than her driver and sometime bodyguard when the climateindicated she was in need of protection. He was her friend, and she trusted himimplicitly. In times of trouble Boogie came through. As he had proved in thepast, he was loyal, smart and usually silent, unless he had something worthsaying-which suited Lucky just fine. He drove her to the front of the Magiriano Hotel on the Strip. She got out ofthe car and stood for a minute feeling the usual thrill of coming home toher hotel. The Magiriano -- a combination of her parents' names -- Maria and Gino. Gino'sdream, put into being by her while Gino sweated out a seven-year tax exile inIsrael. She would always be proud of her achievement. The Magiriano was veryspecial. In the lobby there was the usual melee of tourists and noise. The casino wascrowded with morning gamblers. No windows. No clocks. Twenty-four hours nonstopfun. Lucky did not gamble. Who needed to play the tables when it all belonged to herand Gino anyway? She strode across the lobby to her private elevator concealedbehind an arrangement of potted palms and inserted a code card to gainentry. It was good to be back. She couldn't wait to see Gino. She had so much to tell him. Jess did not live in luxury, but the small tract house in front of which shestopped the car at least had its own tiny swimming pool. "This place is okay,but we're movin' on soon," she explained airily, opening up the front door."We've seen a development in Lake Tahoe we're lookin' to buy into." "Yeah?" said Lennie, and wondered who was looking to buy into it. From thesmall amount of information Jess had divulged about her husband, it seemed hedidn't do much at all except look after their ten-month-old baby while shebrought in the money. "Anyone around?" she called out, as a scruffy mongrel dog appeared andwagged its sorry-looking tail. She bent to pet the animal. "This is Gaass," sheexplained. "Found him dumped in the garbage when he was a pup. Cute, huh?" Wayland appeared, or at least Lennie presumed it was he. From the look of him,Jess had found herself another stray. He was dressed in grubby white chinos anda loose, embroidered shirt, and his dirty feet were bare. He hadshoulder-length yellow hair with a center part, and a long, pallid face. Jess-- who wrote wonderful letters -- had mentioned that he painted. Exactly whathe painted she hadn't gone into. "Greetings, man"' said Wayland, stoned to the eyeballs. "Welcome to our home."And he extended a thin, shaking hand. "Where's the baby?" Jess demanded. "Asleep." "You sure?" "Go see.', For a moment her pretty face clouded over, and Lennie sensed all was not well in this year-old marriage. That's just what he needed,to be stuck right in the middle of some miserable scene. He had enough problemsof his own. Lunch turned out to be a large bowl of brown rice and some wilted lettucecoated with stale yogurt. Jess tried to conceal her aggravation -- she had beenat work all night and had left instructions for Wayland to fix somethingspecial -- but she did it with difficulty. Lennie knew her well enough torealize she was pissed off. The baby -- a boy named Simon -- woke briefly and accepted a bottle. "I wanna take Lennie over to the hotel," Jess said restlessly, when the babywas asleep again. Wayland nodded. He didn't have much to say about anything. Out in the car she lit up a joint, blew smoke in Lennie's face and saidaggressively, "I don't want to talk about it, okay?" "Who's asking?" he replied calmly. She gunned the car into action and sped all the way to the Magiriano, where shedrew up to the entrance without cutting the engine. "I'll meet you here in acouple of hours," she said. "Ask for Matt Traynor. He's the guy who booked you.He'll get someone to show you around." "Where are you going?" "I got an . . . er . . . appointment." "Screwin' around already?" "Give me a reason not to." Having met Wayland, he couldn't think of one. Matt Traynor was a fifty-five-year-old silver-haired fox in a three-piece beigesuit. Apart from being the best entertainment director in Vegas, he had pointsin the hotel. Lucky Santangelo had personally pursued him to take the job, andonly the lure of a piece of the action had persuaded him. He told Lennie he loved the videotape Jess had shown him of his work and thenproceeded to fire off questions about her as if hoping to find out every detailof her life. Lennie made a stab at a few answers, but when Matt started asking about hermarriage, Lennie felt the time had come to move on. Quickly he said he wantedto check out the lounge he would be appearing in and generally get the feel ofthe place. Matt Traynor agreed, gave a few vague directions and waved him onhis way. Las Vegas. The heat. The special smell. The hustle. Las Vegas. Home. From birth to seventeen. Las Vegas. Youthful memories crowding his head. The first time he got laid,drunk, stoned, busted. The first time he fell in love, ran away from home,stole his parents' car. Mom and Pop. The odd couple. Pop, an old-fashioned stand-up comic. Jack Golden. Dependable, a real hack. Buta name everyone in show business knew -- everyone except the general public.Dead thirteen years now. Cancer of the gallbladder. And Mom, Alice Golden, formerly known as "the Swizzle" -- one of the hotteststrippers in town. Good old Mom, fifty-nine years old and living in a condo inCalifornia. From Las Vegas to Marina del Rey in one fell swoop with a used-carsalesman from Sausalito. Alice was not your average Jewish mother. She woreshort shorts, strapless tops, dyed her hair, shaved her legs and got laid a lotafter the Sausalito salesman skipped town with ten thousand dollars' worth ofher jewelry. Alice . . . she was something else. He had never felt close to her. When he wasa kid she bossed him around, sent him on endless errands and used him as alackey. She never cooked a meal in her life. While other kids took neat brownbags to school with homemade meatloaf sandwiches, cookies and cheese, he waslucky to scrounge an apple from a tree in the garden. "You gotta learn to be independent," Alice told him when he was about seven. He had learned the lesson well. Living with Alice and Jack was exciting. Their untidy apartment wasalways filled with dancers and singers, casino people and general show biz.Life was fun, if you forgot about childhood. Alice. A real character. He had learned to accept the way she was. Las Vegas. Why had he come back? Because a job was a job was a job. And as he'd told Jess, he had to get out ofNew York. The police were on his case after he'd punched out a fat drunk whowas heckling him during his act at a Soho club. The fat drunk turned out to bea shyster lawyer, who, when be woke up the next morning with a black eye and asplit lip, decided Lennie Golden needed to be put away and set about doing so.The aggravation of a lawsuit was not something Lennie needed in his life.Leaving town seemed the best way to deal with it. Beside, Eden was on the WestCoast, and for months he had been thinking about following her. Not that theyhad parted friends. After Vegas he planned to move on to Los Angeles. Not just to see Eden. Yeah. To see Eden. Admit it, schmuck, you're still hooked. Lucky entered the pool area and paused for a moment until she caught the eye ofBertil, the Swedish heed honcho of all pool activity. He spotted her immediately. She was impossible to miss in a one-piece blackswimsuit covering a supple tanned body with the longest legs in town. He jumpedto attention, remembering she was the boss, and hurried toward her, greetingher with just the right amount of deference and enthusiasm. "Welcome back, MissSantangelo." She nodded briefly, scanning the mass of bronzed bodies. "Thank you, Bertil.Any problems while I was away?" "Nothing to bother you with." "Bother me," she said softly. "I like to know everything." He hesitated, then launched into a short story about two lifeguards who hadbeen hitting on female guests. "Did you fire them?" she asked. "Yes, but they're planning to sue." "Have you talked to our lawyers?" "Yes." "When it's all taken care of," she said, satisfied. He escorted her to apoolside lounger, and she settled back to observe the action. "Bring me a phone," she requested. He did as she asked, then left her alone. She tried Gino for the third time. He was still out. Where the hell was he? Whywasn't he awaiting her arrival?Copyright © 1990 by Jackie Collins

From Our Editors

THE FABULOUS HEROINE OF CHANCES RETURNS. SHE'S A HOT-BLOODED BEAUTY IN LOVE WITH POWER, HUNGRY FOR PLEASURE... WILD, NOTORIOUS, TROUBLE... SHE'S... LUCKY With the sensual grace of a panther, Lucky Santangelo prowled her Las Vegas casino, restless, ready, eager for action. That night began a dazzling odyssey, filled with dangerous passion and sun-drenched sex, sadistic vengeance and breathless suspense. From the decadent luxury of California, to Paris, New York and a private Greek island, Lucky fought for her father's honor, for ruthless triumph, for the wild card of a fabulous love. Her rivals; an ice-cold Hollywood wife... a much-married heiress strung out on cocaine... a jaded magnate hooked on power...a crazed hoodlum lusting for murder. But Lucky was a gambler and a lover, a woman who ruled her empire and pursued her man with the potent Santangelo strength... her way, on her terms, whatever the odds. Jackie Collins tops the sensational success of "Hollywood Wives" and "Chances" with "Lucky", "so hot it will have to be printed on asbestos." --Liz Smith, The

Editorial Reviews

"Hot." -- Houston Post