He was the all-time all-American virility symbol, perhaps the most successful male actor of his time, the acknowledged "King" of Hollywood in the hungry 1930s; she was the great all-American sex symbol, a tough-talking, beautiful blonde at the height of stardom, "America's Madcap Playgirl #1." He was separated from his wife; she had divorced William Powell ("The son of a bitch is acting even when he takes his pajamas off!") and was recovering from the death of her friend Russ Columbo, accidentally shot in one of Hollywood's more bizarre and notorious scandals. They fell in love in 1936 (a leap year) at the full-dress White Mayfair Hollywood society ball. Until then, she had thought him stuffy; he had objected to her profane language and boisterous public behavior. The next day she had a pair of doves sneaked into his hotel room while he slept, and before long they were obviously, publicly, happily in love, to the pleasure of several million fans and the rage of Louis B. Mayer, Gable's boss, who feared a scandal. Soon they were living together, and America's number one blonde bombshell was learning to hunt, ride, shoot and fish, while Gable sweated out his divorce and suffered through the skirmishing that preceded the filming of Gone With the Wind, worrying about a role he found uncomfortable, but which was to crown his reputation. Together, they make for a book that is lusty, funny, and full of the glittering gossip and real-life tragedy that occur only in Hollywood lives. This book is the story of two otherwise quite ordinary American kids who somehow grew up to become Clark Gable and Carole Lombard, fell in love, married, and lived happily until the day in 1942 when Lombard was killed in a plane crash, plunging the United States into a mourning that eclipsed the war news and leaving Gable a lonely man whose last wish was to be buried beside his beloved Carole. Packed with anecdotes about famous stars, famous houses, famous movies, and famous parties, Gable and Lombard is at once a triumph of nostalgia and a brilliant retelling of romantic legend that seemed to many Americans of the time more real than life itself--and more romantic than the movies--but which was, in fact, simply a love story.--Adapted from dust jacket.