From the publisher:
A hilariously heartfelt novel about living life at full force, and discovering family when you least expect it, influenced in part by the author’s time as Carrie Fisher’s beloved assistant.
Charlie Besson is about to have an insane job interview. His car is idling, like his life, outside the Hollywood mansion of Kathi Kannon. THE Kathi Kannon, star of stage and screen and People magazine’s worst dressed list. She needs an assistant. He needs a hero.
Kathi is an icon, bestselling author, and an award winning actress, most known for her role as Priestess Talara in the iconic blockbuster sci-fi film. She’s also known for another role: crazy Hollywood royalty. Admittedly so. Famously so. Fabulously so.
Charlie gets the job, and embarks on an odyssey filled with late night shopping sprees, last minute trips to see the aurora borealis, and an initiation to that most sacred of Hollywood tribes: the personal assistant. But Kathi becomes much more than a boss, and as their friendship grows, Charlie must make a choice. Will he always be on the sidelines of life, assisting the great forces that be, or can he step into his own leading role?
Laugh-out-loud funny, and searingly poignant, Byron Lane’s A Star is Bored is a novel that, like the star at its center, is enchanting and joyous, heartbreaking and hopeful.
Thinly veiled stories of the rich and famous have always been popular; Lane’s new roman à clef about his time as Carrie Fisher’s personal assistant is sure to make a splash. Charlie Besson is a struggling writer when a friend arranges an interview with Hollywood icon Kathi Kannon. Kathi immediately christens him “Cockring” and things get even crazier from there. Charlie lost his mother as a child, he’s gay, and his relationship with his abusive father is fraught. Kathi is a bipolar drug addict who needs to be closely monitored, and she’s lonely. Kathi and Charlie develop a strong bond; their relationship becomes almost symbiotic. He makes sure she takes her meds, he takes her wherever she wants to go, and he listens to her. She almost becomes a mother figure to Charlie; she gives him advice and makes him feel empowered. It is not always clear who is helping whom more, but things are not as idyllic as Charlie would like to believe. Told with empathy, charm, and a lot of humor, Lane makes this look at celebrity life surprisingly relatable. Lane may soon find himself in need of a personal assistant.
Verdict: A peek inside the wacky life of beloved Hollywood royalty, this debut novel should have wide appeal. Readalikes include The Devil Wears Prada, by Lauren Weisberger, and Blonde, by Joyce Carol Oates.
©Library Journal, 2020
7/2020 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch
A STAR IS BORED by Byron Lane. Henry Holt and Co. (July 28, 2020). ISBN 978-1250266491. 352p.
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