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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My review of Stars Collide by Janice Thompson.

Stars Collide: A Novel (Backstage Pass)

About the book:

Kat Jennings and Scott Murphy don't just play two people who are secretly in love on a television sitcom--they are also head over heels for each other in real life. When the lines between reality and TV land blur, they hope they can keep their relationship under wraps. But when Kat's grandmother, an aging Hollywood starlet with a penchant for wearing elaborate evening gowns from Golden Age movies, mistakes their on-screen wedding proposal for the real deal, things begin to spiral out of their control. Will their secret be front-page news in the tabloids tomorrow? And can their budding romance survive the onslaught of paparazzi, wedding preparations, and misinformed in-laws?
From the sound stage to a Beverly Hills mansion to the gleaming Pacific Ocean, Stars Collide takes readers on a roller-coaster tour of Tinseltown, packing both comedic punch and tender emotion.

My review:

More like 4.5 stars...

This story was a delight to read, as are all of Janice's books. It was mild in the sense of reflecting the author's tender romantic style, but it was also a fun read, too. I loved the grandma. The author made a sad situation funny by putting a spin on it that makes the reader smile at the eccentricities and put them into perspective. The quotes from movies were fun and an entertaining aspect of the story as well.

As is typical for Ms. Thompson, she interjects a powerful human need into every story. In this novel it was Kat's longing for a relationship with her father. While the emotional damage caused by his abandonment when she was only seven was heartbreaking to process with her, it was realistically portrayed. So was her adjusting to the idea that her grandmother's mind was slipping away. Stars Collide was a well rounded story in all aspects and I never got bored with the story or started skimming through the pages.

Last, I felt like I was on a television show backstage with the characters. While Christian actors are probably infrequent at best in Hollywood, it was still fun to read a fictional story about what that might look like. It was tender and sweet, of course. Scott was heroic and a great guy, too. I liked him a lot. His family issues were realistically done. Nothing about the story felt sappy or forced. Everything felt natural in a toned-down, tender manner. I applaud the author for keeping a story so tame and still so very interesting. It wasn't as zany as the author's Weddings by Bella series, but it was still worth my time. I wonder if Brock Benson (a-hem) will show up in the next novel. If he does, I can't wait to see what happens next.

Stars Collide was published by Revell and released in January 2011.

1 comment:

Janice said...

Hey, girl! I'm so glad you liked Kat's story. To answer your question about Brock, he's in book three (the final book in the series). Don't want to give away too much, but he's a key player!

I wanted to tell you about a group in LA called Act One. I took my drama team to visit them several years back. They're a HUGE contention of Christian actors/actresses/techs, etc. Also, I don't know if you're familiar with the Hollywood Prayer Network, but I get their emails. It's so fun to pray for people on sitcoms, soap operas, etc. One more thing...when I visited a church in LA several years ago, their weekly prayer list went something like this: "Pray for so-and-so...she's auditioning for a part in a movie." "Pray for so-and-so...he's hoping to reach out to fellow actors on One Life to Live" (etc.) You get the idea. I was tickled to see how many Christians live and work in LA. That's why I felt so strongly about making them prominent in this story. :)

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