by Laura Caldwell

November 2004
ISBN: 0-373-25075-4
Reviewer Graphic Button Red Dress Ink
Trade Paperback

In her latest offering, The Year of Living Famously Laura Caldwell takes a look at what life is like when itís lived in the public eye. As itís something that I personally never will have to worry about I found it to be an entertaining read, and I feel probably a very true portrayal.

Kyra Felis has an innocent encounter with Declan Mckenna while theyíre both in Vegas one evening. Neither is from Vegas so the fates have to have conspired to not only put them in the same town, but in the same casino at the same time. Kyra returns to her life of being the struggling designer back in New York only to suddenly find herself being courted through e-mails and phone calls by Declan. He got her e-mail from her friend, Bobby whom she was with when in Vegas.

After awhile Declan has to come to New York, and the time they spend there is glorious. Neither can believe their fortune in having found each other. It doesnít take long after Declan returns to his life in L.A. before heís asking Kyra to join him there. As she figures she can be a struggling designer anywhere Kyra makes the life altering move.

Now things get interesting. A movie that Declan made and has been postponed for years is being released. Itís a starring role for him and no one, least of all Kyra and Declan, are prepared for the acclaim that the role brings. Again, life changes for the pair. The ability to wander to the local coffee shop and dawdle has evaporated. Instead of being able to wonder about what being hunted like wild animals is like, they get to live the experience first hand.

Everything must change for them. Will it tear them apart or make them stronger? Even as Kyraís career finally takes off will she believe itís because of her own talents or because sheís now Declanís wife? Ms. Caldwell has written a tale in the first person point of view that explores the ups and downs of being famous and living in a world of truth and innuendo.

Declan is written as a very easy going, whatever sort of man, while Kyra comes off just shy of being a shrew. However, in the end I do believe that Kyra truly only has the best interest of their marriage in mind, but has to struggle through her own identity crisis to realize what is the best interest of the marriage.

This is my first read by Laura Caldwell. Over the last few years Iíve become a fan of what many consider to be Chick Lit. Because of that Iíve read my share of the good and the bad that the genre has to offer. Iím pleased to report that Ms. Caldwell is among the tops in the genre.

Reviewed in December 2004 by Sandi.

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