Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Truly, Madly, Famously by Rebecca Serle

Truly, Madly, Famously by Rebecca Serle
Release Date - October 13, 2015
Publisher Website - Hachette
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 352 pages
My Rating - 5/5
**received for an honest review from publisher**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
In this romantic sequel to Famous in Love, new Hollywood "It Girl" Paige must navigate love with her co-stars, both on and off screen and all in the public eye.

Lights, camera, love!

After being plucked from obscurity, Hollywood's newest starlet, Paige Townsen, has a hit film to her name and Rainer Devon on her arm. But being half of the world's most famous couple comes with a price, and soon Paige finds herself dodging photographers; hiding her feelings for her other costar, Jordan Wilder; and navigating tabloid scandals that threaten to tear her and Rainer apart-and end her career as quickly as it began.

Rebecca Serle's sequel to Famous in Love is filled with the kind of celebrity drama and swoon-worthy romance fit for the silver screen.   
Imagine every decision you made as a teen dissected and judged. Imagine your every move criticized and commented upon.  Truly, Madly, Famously shows the benefits and drawbacks to fame, and is a reminder that you never really know the true story behind some of your favourite Hollywood gossip.

Paige had grown so much during the course of Famous In Love. We see the impact of those events on her within these pages, even while seeing how much more she has to grow. Paige isn't perfect, and doesn't always make the best decisions, but she learns from them. She comes out stronger, and more sure of who she is. She's doing exactly what everyone her age is doing - finding themselves. She just happens to be doing it under the blinding light of  Hollywood. The mistakes that would be a minor blip to most teens are catastrophic for Paige because she is judged and scrutinized for it on a public scale. The most satisfying part of this journey is seeing her become comfortable in the new world she is part of, and feeling comfortable in the new 'skin', so to speak, that she inhabits. It's a rocky journey but one that makes sure she's capable and confident on the other side.

This felt like more of a behind the scenes look than the previous novel did. Instead of time spent on location the novel introduces the grind of promotion, the worry over new projects, and the uncertainty that comes with new fame. Rebecca backdrops this with fleshed out relationships that felt organic to the story. Her connections between the characters are the heart of this series, and that applies to everything not just the romances. The romance is incredibly steamy, and so well done, but I was glad that equal importance was given to the friendships in this novel.

New characters are introduced and you come to love them all. Alexis is one that jumps off the page, and shines just a little brighter. Her storyline is poignant and fits into the narrative of how much this type of scrutiny warps and distorts things. It shows how much is actually secret behind the scenes. Rebecca's love for Hollywood comes through, and with it a lot of depth. She gives her characters and situations a realistic brushstroke even when portraying the daydreams of anyone who has fantasized about being famous.

My favourite part of this love triangle is that Rainer and Jordan have a connection outside of Paige. They have an entire history that doesn't include her. It's also refreshing that they are both decent people. They treat Paige and each other decently. It made the entire thing just a little more heartbreaking. Paige's ultimate decision is one that will not please everyone (no triangle could, and that is kind of the point of them) but Rebecca has done what I didn't think was possible in a triangle - end it with grace. You understand why Paige chooses who she does, even if he's not your choice. Rebecca ensures that you see why this is the right choice for Paige, and the choice is made because they are who is best for her at this time. This isn't some happily ever after situation as the notion that Paige is young, growing, and changing is always there. Her and her chosen boy could grow and change together, or grow apart. It's realistic, and exactly what this novel needed.

This fun, frothy, and insightful look at behind the scenes Hollywood is a must read for fans of CW shows, huge book series with love triangles, and the movies that come with them. It's an insider peek at what it would be like to have your every move scrutinized while falling in love and one done with a lot of depth. Rebecca has written a love letter to young Hollywood, we're just fortunate enough to get to read it.

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