July 9, 2013

Spotlight on: Hollywood Lies by N.K. Smith

Hollywood Lies by N.K. Smith
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Erotica

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In a world where make believe is a multibillion dollar industry, it’s hard to know where the fantasy ends and real life begins. When Collette Stroud, an influential Hollywood actor and director, takes a chance on two young actors for her romantic teen movie, three lives converge in a complicated web of publicity, passion, lust, and lies.
The web is cast when Stroud, a woman with a few skeletons in her closet, hires two young artists in her low-budget film. She handpicks Liliana Addison and Devon Maddox to be Hollywood’s next big stars. Former child star Liliana has had limited success with her previous roles but hopes to take the world by storm under Collette’s tutelage. While Devon is an out of work actor, he never stops dreaming about making it big. The director’s interest in him assures Devon his dreams are about to become reality.
Sparks between Collette and Devon set their lives ablaze, but the studio has other plans. Executives concoct a fictitious romance in order to drive box office sales and launch careers between Devon and Liliana. When the studio offers to make the young actors into bona fide stars, will the price be too high to pay, or will the deal be too sweet to pass up?
Can the trio handle the pressure of a hidden romance coupled with a phony public relationship? Will love be enough to conquer the promise of fame, fortune, and a lasting legacy, or will it be an easy sacrifice?
All three will tread the thin line of Hollywood Lies and genuine passion on the most important red carpet walk of their lives.

Q:  What is your favorite part of the book and why?

A:  Like parents, most authors are in love with their creations and when asked “What’s your favorite part,” it gives them pause. Do you say one of your books (children) is your favorite? Can you honestly say you like one portion of one of your books more than the other?

But because you’ve asked, I’ll share a little something with you. I’m not sure it’s my favorite, but I like it a lot.

“I’d love the role.” I don’t even need to look at the script. If Cole believes in it and is directing it, that is all I need to jump in feet first. Then I remember a condition she put on why she was interested in me. “You said professionally. Are you interested in me in some other way?” Voicing the question makes my heart rate rise just a bit. I’m like a walking chick flick, complete with racing hearts and gushing hope.
“God, I love how innocent you are right now.” She pauses to lick her lips. “Yes, Devon. Personally, I think you’re incredibly interesting. You’re intelligent, you read great books, you’re witty, and you’re from New York. I love New York boys. You’re pretty damn sexy, and what makes you even hotter is that you seem to have no idea how attractive you are.”
That isn’t entirely true. I know I’m good looking. I wouldn’t be a working actor if I wasn’t, but I’m nowhere near the caliber of Hollywood star sexy.
“I can go on, unless it’s making you uncomfortable. I’m the director, and you’re the young talented lead. I’d hate to make you feel like I’m preying on you. I’m not sure I’m old enough to be considered a cougar, but that’s what the tabloids will say.”
Her smile is all I need to see to tell how much she enjoys this. I wonder what I look like right now. Scared? Innocent? Young and naive?
I don’t want to be any of those things. She is so powerful, and I don’t think anything with her will be sustainable if I’m not powerful, too. So many quotes run through my mind in this moment—some from friends, others from famous people. All of them telling me that if I don’t have something, fake it until it’s real.
With faux-confidence, I move to her, take the guitar from her hands and set it down on the floor as I kneel between her legs. She stares at me, waiting to see what I’m going to do, and although I might not be in her league, somehow I know she wants me, and that ignites a little piece of actual confidence within me.
I bring one of my hands up to her face to cup her cheek. I push the tips of my fingers into the soft tangles of her wild, red hair. My other hand rests on her thigh. As I search her eyes for something I can’t explain, I move my hand to her hip, then I pull her toward me until her body is pressed against mine.

What I love about this scene is the innocence of the first exploration of Cole and Devon. It’s the moment in the (or any) relationship when it can either go somewhere or stall out. It’s the moment when one of the two needs to be courageous and make something happen. It’s the moment when one person risks everything for the mere possibility of something awesome to grow out of it.

There are a lot of moments within this story I really like. This was just one of them. Thanks so much for taking the time to host me on your blog. I hope your readers find multiple passages throughout the story that could be their favorite.

Hollywood LiesHollywood Lies by N.K. Smith

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I truly enjoyed this book. I liked the glimpse into the Hollywood "celebrity" life that it showed. The synopsis of the book really doesn't do it justice, in my opinion, though. While the book is about all of those things, and the main characters are Devon, Collette (Cole), and Liliana, the majority of the book does not focus on their love triangle (real or imagined). The heart of the book revolves around Cole and Devon and the very real and intense connection that they feel for each other in the middle of a very fake and superficial world.

I really connected with Cole. She has suffered a very horrific trauma in her past that has made her wary and paranoid of intimacy. I wish that the book went in to a more detailed account of what happened to her, maybe in some sort of flashbacks, because I think it would have added that little bit of more to her character. I was also really intrigued with the idea that a woman as strong as Cole succumbed to drug abuse. I know that it also stemmed from the abuse and violence that she suffered in her past, but I wanted to read that story too. I guess I should say that I would have loved a book just about Cole and her past! She was simply that much of an interesting and complex character.

And then there's Devon. I loved how sincere and heartfelt he was all throughout the book. He remained a genuinely decent person until the end, in spite of his meteoric rise to fame. I forgave him immediately when he slipped up, because it only made him seem more human. The passion and love he showed for Cole made him instantly drool-worthy, not to mention that their sex scenes were H-O-T! Who cares if they actually loved each other? With sexual chemistry like that, Cole would have been a fool to let him get away! (Although, I was very happy with how everything ended up.)

Overall, I truly enjoyed this book. It was very entertaining to see some of the inner workings of Hollywood movie making, not to mention the glimpse of the publicity stunts and lies that are told to make or break a career. The plot line was very believable, and made me more empathetic to how real celebrities must live. I recommend you read this book if you like a good story, with great sex thrown in as a bonus!

View all my reviews

Author Bio:
Based in the American Midwest, N.K. Smith is a Technical Writer for a Fortune 100 company. The author of the Old Wounds Series, she is a mother of two who finds the time to write very early in the morning when the rest of the world is still fast asleep.
An avid lover of history, art, music, books, and people, she is interested in telling stories that speak to the human condition.

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