This is another amazon kindle free book although its not free anymore, it was one of those times where it is a book already quite successful promoted as free for a short period of time to boost its popularity and raise interest. Victoria Fox is an up and coming author since this is her debut novel, she is firmly in the chick lit market; she can be likened to authors such as Jackie Collins or Louise Bagshawe, she describes her books as bonkbusters on her amazon biography.
The story has numerous plots with 4 main couples as the characters that the book follows, alternating between characters. This means there are many sub plots and much to keep up with. The 4 couples are Chloe and Nate, Kate and Jimmy, Lana and Cole and Elizabeth and Robert. In addition to tracking them as couples since they are all together at the start of the book, indeed with their problems though they are also tracked as individuals. The most featured is Lana because as well as being in the present day it also tracks her past and just how she got to be at the position where she is today. Some of the main plot lines include Chloe's affair with a married man, Lana and Cole's fake marriage, Lana's violent past, Elizabeth's controlling father, Kate's career dying out and more. As the name suggests, all of the action takes place in Hollywood!
I really feel like this author is going to make her mark on the chick flick genre. She has followed the lead of prominent authors in the field, but at the same time has made her own style that is really readable but not boring. I really liked the wide variety of characters used, this was necessary in the length of the book written since it is a massive 600 pages and it may have gotten a bit tedious following the same couple with this issue for that long a book, but it was a perfect length for what she wrote about. At some points since it changed from character to character between chapters you did need to keep up and figure out which character it was now following, but within the first paragraph you do tend to get a lot of hits. In general I just really loved this book and would definitely recommend it, the twists were really good and I was totally addicted.
Marriage to Hollywood heartthrob Cole Steel secured Lana Falcon a glittering place on the red carpet. But running from a wicked past she has trapped herself in a gilded cage the price of freedom...her soul? Kate diLaurentis's career is fading as quickly as her looks... What could be worse than discovering her husband s latest mistress is Hollywood's hottest starlet? Her only option the most shocking revenge. Chloe French's innocent beauty has captured a million hearts, but no one's warned her of the dangerous, dark temptation of rock star Nate - will lust destroy her? Las Vegas King, Robert St Louis's fairytale wedding to Sin City's richest heiress is tabloid gold... But scandal circles like a vulture - dirty secrets are about to be exposed! From the deepest desires come the deadliest deeds...and these four couples are about to pay for their sins...
Generally I'm not a fan of novels in the Jackie Collins mould. They're too far-fetched for me and I generally prefer books that are a bit more real. But every once in a while I want to read something different, and I've recently found that these fat juicy books are fantastic when you're looking to read something a bit different to the norm. I read Sasha Blake's The Wish a while back and I enjoyed it. More recently I've read J.J. Salem's new novel The Strip and, again, I liked the escape it provided. So when I was offered a review copy of Hollywood Sinners, I thought 'Why not?'. It's Victoria Fox's debut novel and since she used to work as an editor, I was really interested in reading the book. It's a massive read, coming in at a whopping 608 pages but once you get started, the pages do just seem to fly by.
Another reason I generally steer clear of these novels is the sheer magnitude of characters. You're introduced to about 50 characters and you're expected to keep track of them all and to have to keep up with so many characters does terrify me. Thankfully with Hollywood Sinners, although there are a lot of characters, the main, defined ones are easy to keep up with. Hollywood Sinners focuses, mainly, on four couples. Lana and Cole, Chloe and Nate, Kate and Jimmy and Robert and Elisabeth. They all have their own plots in the novel, with marriage, jealously, bed-hopping and secrets the order of the day. All of the characters are related to each other, intrinsically so, and it's intriguing to unravel the story behind each and every one of these glamorous, rich people.
There are a number of plots running through the book. And many more sub-plots, too, so the pace of the book is always running high and fast. There's Cole and Lana's sham marriage, Chloe's rise to stardom, the fact Kate is feeling out of the acting game at 40 and Robert and Elisabeth's massive wedding that they haven't yet set a date for. Dig a little deeper and there's even more as our characters become linked or their stories from the past are revealed. Lana and Robert know each other from when they were growing up which was the most interesting sub-plot of the novel and we see flashbacks from their time growing up and how it affected them. That really took the pace of the novel up a notch as twists and turns were revealed. The book is set in Vegas, LA and England. It switches seamlessly from character to character, place to place. Vegas sounds like such a brilliant place and Fox describes it well. I truly felt like I was there, at the Orient, or on the Strip.
I must admit, I didn't expect to like any of the characters. They're all rich, spoiled, big-headed and cheat like no one's business. But there are some nice people in there as well. The one who made the most impression on me was Lana Falcon, she has a past and is hiding a big secret, but I liked her immediately. She's in circumstances beyond her control with her husband Cole and I felt myself sympathising with her. I didn't much like Cole, her husband, he was a bit too controlling for my taste. I liked Chloe French, too, she's a bit naive, is an up-and-coming actress and model and there's lots about her to like. I didn't like Kate DiLaurentis, she was plain old evil, no matter what her husband did. I didn't much care for Elisabeth Bernstein, but I did like her partner Robert St Louis. It was a mixed bag of good characters and ones I didn't like, and it was nicely balanced. There were many other characters, obviously, but the ones I've mentioned are our main bunch. There was someone for everyone and I was pleased to have not hated everyone like I very much expected to.
The ending was spectacular. It was built up and built up and built up until it all exploded. I was blown away and I could easily imagine every single scene that played out; it was like a movie scene, one I could easily see up on the big screen in fact. I thought it was very well done and I literally couldn't put the book down because I was desperate to know how it was all going to play about come those final chapters. One thing Fox does well is building up the suspense. I thoroughly enjoyed the novel, and I truly didn't want it to end. Those 600 pages were pages well read as far as I'm concerned. My only issue with the book was a subplot featuring Elisabeth and a man called Alberto. I knew exactly how that was going to play out and it rather grossed me out. (You'll understand when you read the novel!). It was unnecessary, if you ask me and made me a bit uncomfortable. But that doesn't detract from the book at all, it just adds shock value although it's fair to say a book as shocking and twist-y as Hollywood Sinners wasn't exactly lacking in shock value before then. Hollywood Sinners is a book to pack in your suitcase this summer and I can't wait for Victoria's next offering.