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Authors: Harold Robbins

Tycoon

BOOK: Tycoon
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“Harold Robbins is a master!” raved
Playboy
magazine of the consummate storyteller of our time. Now he is at his scintillating best in this dazzling new novel of sex, money, power, and ambition as a network television maverick climbs his way to the top on a ladder of vanquished enemies. . .and conquered women. . .

Jack Lear is driven by unbridled ambition. As a pioneering radio and television broadcaster, he makes a fortune, launches a network, and marries two women. But despite all he has, what can never be his continues to taunt him: the respectability of old money.

The women in his life are legion. His first wife is a shrewd, gorgeous WASP princess who transforms him from the son of a Jewish scrap-metal king into a man of class, surrounded by the trappings of elegant wealth. His second marriage is to the lovely English aristocrat who introduces him to high society. Yet Jack Lear's drive to succeed—to best his rivals by whatever means—has no give, and one day, he comes face-to-face with a threat from an unexpected corner—a threat that could sweep his hard-won empire right out of his powerful hands.

For nearly half a century, Harold Robbins has been working his magic, creating formulas that result in bestseller after bestseller, and more than 300 million copies of his novels have sold worldwide. With TYCOON he comes through with a roar, delivering an irresistible tale of sexually charged, furiously paced energy as only Harold Robbins could tell it.

PRAISE FOR
HAROLD ROBBINS

“Robbins' books are packed with action, sustained by a strong narrative drive, and are given vitality by his own colorful life.”

—
The Wall Street Journal

“Robbins is an incomparable storyteller.”

—United Press International

“Harold Robbins is one of the world's five bestselling authors . . . each week, an estimated 280,000 people . . . purchase a Harold Robbins book.”

—
Saturday Review

“Robbins can . . . make readers turn the pages through cliff-hanging chapters and a gallery of eccentric characters. . . .”

—
Publishers Weekly

Books by Harold Robbins

Tycoon

The Stallion

The Raiders

The Piranhas

The Storyteller

Descent from Xanadu

Spellbinder

Good-bye, Janette

Memories of Another Day

Dreams Die First

The Lonely Lady

The Pirate

The Betsy

The Inheritors

The Adventurers

Where Love Has Gone

The Carpetbaggers

Stiletto

79 Park Avenue

Never Leave Me

A Stone for Danny Fisher

The Dream Merchants

Never Love a Stranger

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This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

Nearly every conceivable combination of letters has been used as the call letters of a radio or television station somewhere. The call letters used for stations mentioned in this work of fiction, as well as television network initials, are emphatically not meant to be the letters of any real station or network anywhere. Every station or network mentioned in this story is fictional or is used fictionally, even if by coincidence its letters are those of a real station or network.

Simon & Schuster

1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020

www.SimonandSchuster.com

Copyright © 1997 by Harold Robbins

Originally published in hardcover in 1997 by Simon & Schuster Inc.

All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this book or portions thereof in any form whatsoever. For information address Simon & Schuster Inc., 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020

ISBN 978-1-4516-8235-9

ISBN-13: 978-1-45169-716-2 (eBook)

First Simon & Schuster printing December 1998

SIMON & SCHUSTER and colophon are registered trademarks of Simon & Schuster Inc.

To my wife J
ANN
,
with all my love
and happiness.

Contents

 

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

Chapter Seventeen

Chapter Eighteen

Chapter Nineteen

Chapter Twenty

Chapter Twenty-One

Chapter Twenty-Two

Chapter Twenty-Three

Chapter Twenty-Four

Chapter Twenty-Five

Chapter Twenty-Six

Chapter Twenty-Seven

Chapter Twenty-Eight

Chapter Twenty-Nine

Chapter Thirty

Chapter Thirty-One

Chapter Thirty-Two

Chapter Thirty-Three

Chapter Thirty-Four

Chapter Thirty-Five

Chapter Thirty-Six

Chapter Thirty-Seven

Chapter Thirty-Eight

Chapter Thirty-Nine

Chapter Forty

Chapter Forty-One

ONE

One

1931

T
HE CENTRAL AND DEFINING FACTS OF
J
ACK
L
EAR'S LIFE WERE
that he was a grandson of Johann Lehrer and a son of Erich Lear and that he was married to the most beautiful woman in America.

His wife's name was Kimberly—Kimberly Bayard Wolcott Lear. Late in the evening of Wednesday, August 19, she sat at a dressing table in their room at the Ambassador Hotel, brushing out her dark-brown hair. For the dinner earlier that evening with the Lears—Jack's grandfather, father, brother, and sister-in-law—she'd had it styled curling behind her ears, exposing her diamond earrings; but now she was brushing it out, making it smooth and glossy, the way Jack preferred it. She had not yet wiped off her makeup. Her eyebrows, plucked into two delicate arches, were dark and well defined, but she had accentuated them even more with pencil. Her lashes were sharply delineated by mascara, her cheekbones were highlighted by rouge, and her carefully applied lipstick made her lips look lusciously dramatic. Brushing with her right hand, she held in her left a Herbert Tareyton cigarette in an amber holder.

She was wearing a pink silk crepe de chine teddy.

BOOK: Tycoon
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