Marti Rulli, with Dennis Davern
I knew next to nothing about Natalie Wood just a few weeks ago. Just the fact that she was an actress and she drowned. That’s it. And then I saw that the case dealing with her death was being reopened by law enforcement and I had to know more.
Goodbye Natalie, Goodbye Splendour is the story of that night as told to the author by her longtime friend, Dennis Davern, who was also the captain of Natalie’s boat, Splendour. Davern was extremely close with Natalie and her husband Robert Wagner and he was present the night Natalie died, along with Christopher Walken. For years Davern kept his silence, out of allegiance to Wagner, but once Wagner cast him off, his guilt, along with his anger, encouraged him to come clean about what really happened that night Natalie died.
I will be honest; although I knew little about this case before picking up this book, I was already pretty convinced of Wagner’s guilt. There’s just too many inconsistencies and it doesn’t make sense that someone would just fall off a large yacht and drown. My viewpoint was only confounded as I read this book. It just doesn’t make sense, and unfortunately
Wagner’s celebrity status at the time was enough for the investigators to brush everything under the rug and refuse to look into the matter at all.
I loved that this book was written with the help of an insider. I believe Davern’s account wholeheartedly, because it makes sense and because it is corroborated by others. However, I did have some issues with the book. There were times when it was unbelievably slow. For one, I have absolutely no interest in the author’s history or Davern’s history. I’m sorry, but I just want to hear about Natalie and Wagner and that night and what really happened. There’s absolutely no reason to add anyone else’s biographical account. I also thought that parts of the book were redundant and that Rulli was attempting to drag it out longer than was necessary. She would continuously replay the scene of that fateful night, each time adding one or two more tidbits of information, so by the end it had also become a bit anticlimactic. In general, I felt that it was a poorly written book BUT I was more interested in the story being told, so I was able to overlook that.
If you’re interested in what really happened to Natalie Wood, you should consider Goodbye Natalie, Goodbye Splendour. You’ll be heartsick for Natalie and angered at the way the case has been handled.
None that I could find.
I purchased this book from Amazon for my kindle.