On the one hand, Carly Cooper is lots of things: a former jet-setting career gal, a frazzled mother of two small boys, a somewhat devoted wife, a definitely devoted friend. On the other hand, she's not quite sure who she is. Her once glam life has taken a rather mundane turn and now that the kids are off at nursery and school during the day, she's starting to notice the rather large gap that's been slowly filling her world. When a chance encounter with an ex leads to offers of fame, fortune and a fabulous new Hollywood life, she jumps at the chance to escape the ordinary and revel, for once, in the truly extraordinary.
So, there might be a few glitches - hubby's none too keen on the idea, the kids are only just settled into a nice stable routine, she'll miss her best friends desperately - but none of these can stop her. Nor can the slight issue of there being no real, concrete job for her over the pond, just a lot of hype and some vague promises. No, Carly's had enough, this window of opportunity will give her an escape route into another life, and she's not going to let anything stop her from seizing the chance with both hands.
Chapter three, and we're there, the wait is over and a whole new life in California is beckoning. The book's setting swiftly skips from London to LA, and it's not just the weather hotting up as Carly and family find themselves living with an old flame turned Hollywood superstar in his plush mansion. As temperatures soar, can Carly keep her head and remember what she's doing out there in the first place?
This book is a brilliant, light, comical read with some fabulous twists and turns. A great peek into how the other half live it's the literary equivalent of MTV Cribs meets Perez Hilton though the references to real celebs are kept strictly brief and non-offensive. I started this book on a plane and finished it on a beach, and thought it the perfect holiday read as it's a lovely engaging story with some fab characters and witty observations of both family and Hollywood life.
Carly makes a living writing books and the odd magazine column, and the book is interspersed with examples of the latter, a yummy mummy's guide to life which is a world away from the actual day to day happenings she personally encounters. These, I thought, didn't add all that much to the story, but were still fun to read in a tongue-in-cheek way. The inspiration for these interludes no doubt came from the author's other role, as a columnist for the Daily Record, and Scottish readers may already be familiar with her work.
This review first appeared on www.thebookbag.co.uk under my name.