Regan (Harper), Jul 2004, 24.95, 304 pp.
Rachel leaves her hometown of Sugarland, Texa; to follow her dreams of becoming a Hollywood screenwriter. She settles on working as a personal assistant to sitcom star and Betty Ford Clinic failed “alumni” Victoria Rush. Michaela, an almost thirty over the hill wannabe, mentors the transplanted Texan though her expertise centers on sharing a couch with her agent that has led to nowhere but his couch. Assistant Jeb has been fired more often than a federal whistleblower, but now works for off the wall agent Randall Blume. Kecia toils for black teen heartthrob Travis Trask. To keep his job, Griffin pretends to be gay because he works for heterosexual phobic Johnny Treadway; that fails to stop his boss from pooping on him especially when he cannot get Travis to star in a werewolf version of Catcher in the Rye because the homeboy prefers basketball to baseball.
Once a week, the abused assistants meet to share their misery. Still each hopes to make it vowing to be kind to newcomers if they do (none of them think in terms of when anymore). Everyday they pray that Hollywood never grinds them into mush.
Though this Hollywood exposé starts slowly to introduce the ensemble, once the players appear, the story line moves rather quickly through the gyrations of humiliation that the quintet suffer at the hands of their superiors who forget they once wore these moccasins. The plot combines humor and angst as it lays bare how ugly those in power can be towards those beneath them. Fans of Hollywood tales who gives Robin Lynn Williams' novel a chance to accelerate will appreciate this fine depiction of Hollywood at its worst.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner