Friday, March 7, 2014

Real Happy Family
by Caeli Wolfson Widger

Publisher: New Harvest
Pages: 384
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  Part-time actress, full-time party girl Lorelei Branch isn’t famous yet, but she’s perfected a Hollywood lifestyle full of clubbing, fashion, and the latest juice cleanse. When Robin, her sister-in-law and agent, throws a plum job her way, Lorelei jumps at the chance and auditions to be the new girl on television’s hottest reality show, Flo’s Studio. Enter Colleen, Lorelei’s pill-popping mother, who wants nothing more than to see her daughter win the fame and glory she never had a chance to pursue herself. But Lorelei’s dream of becoming the next reality star is dashed when she loses the spot on Flo’s Studio to a stunning African woman. In an attempt to defend her daughter against what she calls a rigged contest, Colleen goes ballistic and delivers a racist rant on live television, sparking a national media frenzy. Lorelei flees the limelight, humiliated and broke, with her slacker boyfriend Don and heads for Reno where she begins to self-destruct.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Branch family starts to come apart at the seams. Colleen and her husband, Carl, are quietly drifting apart. Darren, Lorelei’s older half-brother, is stuck in Florida working on a contentious film set while his wife, Robin, continues the tedious regimen of fertility drugs meant to help them conceive a child. Desperate to bring the family together again and make things right, Colleen hatches a plan to stage an intervention for Lorelei on the reality show Real Happy Family. Soon the entire Branch family is entangled in a mission to bring the prodigal daughter back into the fold.


Kritters Thoughts:  Drama, Drama, Drama!  This book was slam packed full of drama.  Taking place in probably the most dramatic of towns, Los Angeles, this family is caught up in the movie business in all sorts of ways and this book doesn't make it look all nice and pretty!  

Centered mostly around the youngest of the family, Lorelei has been trying to get into the acting business one way or another and after a very public dramatic event, she runs to Reno, Nevada to hide.  At times, this book was hard to read because there was quite a bit of drug use and cheating spouses, but it all felt real.  So often a book takes you behind the scenes of Hollywood, but only shows the positive happy times, while this book took you through the rough parts that can happen when a family is trying to make it in this business.

Although a hard book to read, it read quickly and it was easy flow from the past to the present and from one character to the next.  I would recommend this one to readers who enjoy the nitty gritty books and likes the harsh view of things.


Rating: enjoyable, but didn't leave me wanting more

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from TLC Book Tours.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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