Million Dollar Red (Paperback)
Vine Leaves Press, 9781925965209, 286pp.
Publication Date: December 2, 2019
Gleah Powers began her adult life at age 14, not as a runaway, but as a "send away" in 1962.
Known as Linda in those days, her strong-willed grandmother put her on a greyhound bus to travel alone, cross-country, with no firm plans for a return. It was understood between them that Linda, a young artist, was strong enough. By her early teens she was already the jaded veteran of her mother's first three divorces. She felt ready for the world, all set to navigate men, sex, and love.
As the 1970s begin, Linda moves to Los Angeles in the shadow of the Manson Murders. She then bolts to New York, and falls in love: first, with a gay friend, next, with a famous art-collecting movie mogul, third, with a wealthy philanthropist descended from the Vanderbilt fortune. In a grand effort to put all these false father figures behind her, she takes up with the leader of a powerful upscale cult who holds a number of otherwise intelligent urban professionals under his great spell.
This dark, blazingly honest, and often jubilant and deeply funny memoir, climaxes with Linda's attempts to break through as an artist, be it as a painter or performer. She connects herself with the world ... but it is a marriage and divorce, served bittersweet, a deathbed visit with her father and an icy refuge in Montana that plunge her into her authentic life.