EDIT: Thank you Polyvore for Top Sets on 29th August! :)
Hollywood // The Veronicas [used to love this song!]
Review can also be viewed on Goodreads: http://bit.ly/PJe6Ry
This was recommended to me by @anashe - thanks hun :)
3.5 stars out of 5.
This story is about Reid Alexander and Emma Pierce. Both of them are starring as the lead characters in an up and coming Hollywood Blockbuster film School Pride, which is an Americanized teen-flick version of the classic love story, Pride and Prejudice. Reid is already a high-profile famous actor and Emma is an unknown actress, who has only done commercials.
Reid is a typical manwh*re. He’s stuck up his own arse, he can have any girl he wants, a tabloid fodder and well...there’s not really much to explain, he’s a douc.hebag. (I think that’s the best way of summing up Reid). But behind that good-looking face, he’s got problems of his own. His mum is an alcoholic who has recently went to rehab (again) and has a strained relationship with his dad.
Emma is a really likeable character, a little wishy-washy but I thought she was really humble and down to earth kind of girl. She’s not interested in fame or per se being ‘celeb’, she just wants to be a normal girl and yearns for that normalcy. It’s clear that she knows what she wants for her future and it’s not in the Hollywood spotlight. She prefers to work in theatre, rather than in front of a camera, but she is only doing School Pride because people want her to. She, like Reid, has a distanced relationship with her dad ever since her mum died when she was six. She has a stepmother Chloe, who’s self-centered.
Graham Douglas plays plays Bill Collins, who’s a nerd, despite he is not a nerd. Emma sees him for the first time at a club describes him as too good-looking to play Bill. Tall, with dark hair and eyes, he is a mystery, kind of a quite and pensive person. Reid wants Emma. Even though they share chemistry onset as Will and Lizabeth, Emma has a connection with her costar Graham. It’s clear that they are attracted to each other, when they spend time together, especially during their early runs in the mornings.
They share a kiss, after this quote:
"'Do you surrender?'
My heart is pounding, and I'm tingling from head to toe. 'Surrender to what?' I whisper, my chest rising and falling, my eyes locked on his.
His gaze doesn't waver. 'A kiss.' "
Unfortunately, their love story doesn’t last because I don’t hear of it again until the last few chapters. The School Pride cast are at a concert, as Reid knows the singer in the band and they get a private view. Graham doesn’t attend because soon after he and Emma kiss, he has to fly back to New York for a family emergency. This concert scene is the one where Reid kisses Emma offset, taking their offset chemistry to the next level. Someone sneakily takes a snap of them kissing and it ends up on celeb gossip websites, making it hot news in Hollywood, where the paparazzi are concerned.
Graham comes back later on in the story, finds out from the rumours and photographic evidence. The kiss is never spoken about again and he doesn’t bring it up anymore because he thinks that Emma is falling for Reid.
Reid and Emma sort of have a relationship together, but I think it’s more so Reid wants to sleep with her and he isn’t one to be patient. Emma can’t stop thinking about Graham. She’s led to think that Graham couldn’t be hers because he spends a lot of time with costar Brooke and believes they are romantically involved.
I really liked Emma in this story, I think she’s a great protagonist and I enjoyed reading her point of view. She’s entering the entertainment industry in Hollywood for the first time as School Pride is her big break, so it’s interesting to hear her thoughts on she copes being the spotlight, rumours and having inquisitive paparazzi taking pictures. What I liked about her is that she’s very grounded. She remains best friends with Emily. When they have argument and didn’t talk for more than a week, Emma was more upset about losing her best friend, rather than her relationship with Reid ending. I liked how towards the ending of the story, Emma’s relationship with her dad gets better after she talks to him about wanting to go to college to study Theatre in NY.
I tried to like Reid, but that didn’t happen. He’s not a very likable character at all. I know he’s got family problems but he remains this self-centered person and I don’t think his character grew throughout the story and he was just this boy who couldn’t keep it in his pants. I think there’s a lot of mystery of why he and Brooke don’t get along. It’s said that they were together 4 years ago, to which ended badly. Later into the story, it is revealed why. Dropped as a bombshell, Emma overheard and ran off.
I think Reid did like Emma, he felt something with her, but this clearly was not enough. Soon after things ended with Emma, he just slept with a string of different girls and it just goes to show what kind of person he really is. He obviously wasn’t the right person for Emma because he really wanted to have sex with her and she was hesitant. If he really liked her, he wouldn’t have tried to push her into it and he wouldn’t have slept with those other girls after they broke up.
I think this story should have been written in Graham’s point of view, rather than Reid’s because it sounds as though Graham and Emma should be together and not her and Reid. So I thought that was ironic and strange that the two main characters aren’t the ones that are going to be together.
I gave this book rating 3.5 stars out of 5. I like this story, but not enough to give a 4 rating because I don’t think it hit that mark, it almost did...but not quite. I felt like something is missing, maybe lack of depth, subtlety and drama. It was interesting reading the filming scenes and the dialogues of their onscreen characters. It sort of gives you an idea of the audition process, what goes on behind the scenes of filming and what the cast gets up to when they’re not filming.
I did enjoy this story. I read this in 4 days! I couldn’t put it down. It’s mostly because the chapters are short and split into two points of views, so it makes me want to read more. I liked the ending, it was nice but it wasn’t an ending that sounds like the story had ended – there was more to come and that’s where you need the second book part II ‘Where You Are’ ready to read!
Bottom line: I recommend, if you like chick-lit short reads.
For the cast, I am thinking Emma Watson as Emma Pierce, Alex Pettyfer for Reid Alexander. Dianna Argon as Brooke Cameron and Sam Riley as Graham Douglas.