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Friends and Rivals is my first book by Tilly Bagshawe and I fell in love with the cover of this hardback book although very simplistic it is beautiful I was just hoping I would love the story inside just as much.
Kat fears she is past her prime. Her philandering husband, Ivan, who she still loves passionately after twenty years of marriage, leaves her for a younger woman. Devastated, there is only one person left who Kat trusts.
Kendall is sure she has it all. But underneath her tough exterior she hides a vulnerability - she is helplessly struggling with an unrequited love. But when Kendall's need for success consumes her, she won't let anyone stand in her way.
Ava is an innocent, plucked from obscurity and thrown into the deep-end of the glamorous world of fame. When she is pitted against Kendall, the world watches closely, wondering who will survive.
As these three women try to navigate a backstabbing world of infamy, desire and fortune, will they be tempted to betray the people they hold dearest?
Friends and Rivals was not what I was expecting at all but it was a great surprise I really enjoyed this book. What I loved the most is how different each of the characters were and how well they were developed considering how big a part each character played in the book. Usually when there is a big cast of characters in a book there always seems to be one or two characters who outshines everyone else but this isn't the case in this book I really felt as though I got to know each and every character in this book. There is a different character for everyone but combined together they complement the book by bringing you a little of each personality to this action packed, tense storyline.
The storyline is very much based around fame and fortune and the music industry but with the added bonus of many relationships and friendships with spanners in the works. All the way through this book I was never quite sure what was going to happen on the next chapter and there was no way of predicting who would end up with who as there is so much betrayal and rivalry between numerous amount of characters.
My favourite two characters had to be Jack and Catriona they had a more gentler and down to earth feel to them and I was hoping all the way through that they would finally get together to nurse each other's broken hearts but in fiction books you never know how the relationships will end up!
The author is a little gem and gives us a perfect ending to the book by tying up all the loose ends to the storyline rather than leaving us on a cliff hanger but you just have to read this book to see if the outcomes are what you were expecting!
Looking for an intense read full of rivalry and betrayal, glamour and romance then look no further!
Books are, I feel a lot like food - sometimes you might fancy a top-notch piece of steak but sometimes, frankly fish and chips preferably eaten with one of those titchy forks out of the paper just hits a spot. If this book were food it would definitely be a 2am drunken kebab - you know you probably *shouldn't* but it's enjoyable all the same.
Friends and Rivals is set in contemporary Britain, with ventures of the characters into LA. The two main characters Jack and Ivan have been friends for years and set up a management company together. Things are to change as the friends fall out and become rivals in business in the oh-so seedy world of the music business, the ideal setting for a dodgy sex scene or 30 and for a series of vacuous but attractive characters to thrive. There's Kendall the rising female star, and Eva a young woman plucked from obscurity through an X-Factoralike and a host of handsome male characters to counter them and on the fringes of them all, Cat, the slightly older woman who has been Ivan's wife for years, happy to turn a blind eye whilst conjuring up domestic bliss - this is modern day Jackie Collins fare which is unashamedly trashy and at times downright cheesy.
All that said, somehow the author manages to pull it off with this book. It's not realistic at all in parts - I'm not even sure that it's supposed to be really, though it is peppered with references to real 'celebrities", the rise and fall of the characters here all seems a bit simplistic and to a greater or lesser degree all the characters are cliches. Kat has a house filled with lavendar scented sheets and all the racier characters are off drinking Kristal and wearing designer clobber. There's a lot of sex, most of it good sex and no one, bar Kat of course does any housework or seems to be bogged down by the mundane as they are just too busy being young/gorgeous/famous or all three. There's absolutely no need whatsover to think about the plot of this book or, indeed to analyse it in any way at all as the characters veer from one boozy party to another and move on from one sexual encounter to another. As long as you read this expecting to be entertained rather than educated that's absolutely fine by me - it's pure escapism, nothing more and nothing less.
So despite myself really I enjoyed the book for what it was - I thought the ending of it was a bit too neat really and wasn't sure some of the characters quite got what they deserved but it was a way to fill a few hours. I can't say that the story or the characters stayed with me in all honesty after the last page was turned - but it's just not that kind of book. "Friends and Rivals" was disposable, fun literature in 464 pages, nothing more and nothing less - recommended if you are a "sometimes I could just fancy a keebab" kind of gal.
Currently available for £4.22 on amazon in paper back, I read a hardback preview copy