Leanne Gitlin lives in a small town in West Virginia, with her mother and her mentally challenged brother. For a number of years, she has run the fan club for Joshua Reed, an up-and-coming actor -- though she's never met him.
All that changes one day, after Joshua Reed comes to the area to work on a new movie. The arrogant, misbehaving Reed drinks too much, steals a limo, and gets into an accident. Through Leanne's intervention, he isn't given jail time, but instead lands a 90-day house arrest -- in Leanne's house.
The book follows what happens during those 90 days, as Leanne learns what Joshua Reed is really like, and what she wants out of life.
This report prepared by Steve Harte
Red Dress, Sep 2004, 12.95, 304 pp.
Ten years ago as a young teen, Leanne Gitlin fell in love with soap opera star Joshua Reed. A few years later she became the president of his local fan club. Leanne becomes elated to learn that her hero is filming nearby her hometown of Pinecob, West Virginia. When she meets him she finds he is obnoxious. When she learns he got himself into a legal jam involving a stolen car, a DUI, and an injured cow, she agrees to guarantee his behavior with the court that places Joshua under house arrest at her home.
Joshua is a bore as he makes it abundantly clear that he wants nothing to do with her, her home, or her town although the locals and the media have turned his visit into a wild free for all; instead he wants to return to his urban playground. Reassessing where she is and where she is going, Leanne wonders what could have been with her former boyfriend Max Campbell. As Joshua continues to be a pain in the butt, Max returns home because he misses Leanne, who is now a fifteen minute celebrity.
This is an entertaining look at fame from the perspective of a fan who watches her flesh and blood hero behave like an uncaring boor.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner