My Lucky Star Review
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One day, struggling playwright Philip Cavanaugh is delivering packages to handsome, successful former classmates and fretting over his future. The next day, he’s sipping champagne and flying first-class to California, convinced that his luck might finally be changing—thanks to his ever-mooching pal, Gilbert. While Gilbert, who’s always looking for the perfect opportunity to take advantage of others, is in Hollywood to visit his mother and her fiancée, a big-time Hollywood mogul, he weasels his way into the Chance of a Lifetime. Gilbert convinces producer Bobby Spellman that he, Philip, and their friend Claire are the Next Big Thing in screenwriting—and Spellman hires the trio to adapt a “lost classic” novel called A Song for Greta for the big screen.

Philip and Claire fly out to meet Gilbert, who announces that Spellman has convinced Hollywood legend Diana Malenfant and her super-star son, Stephen Donato, to star in the film—their first on-screen reunion in twenty-five years. The Oscar, he says, is as good as theirs.

Here, however, is where things start to go horribly wrong for the team of writers. Philip and Claire (who’s still not totally convinced that the deal is legitimate) discover that the spec script that Gilbert used to get them the job was plagiarized. And while Spellman is convinced of their talent, the film’s stars want to hire well-known writers. When Gilbert and Philip meet with the stars to win them over, Philip falls madly, head-over-heels in love with gorgeous—and, rumor has it, secretly gay, though married to a famous model—Stephen, and he vows to do whatever it takes to get closer to him. And if that means agreeing to ghostwrite the memoirs of Stephen’s bitter, washed-up aunt Lily to keep Stephen in his closet, so be it.

Add to that Gilbert’s shrewd, blackmailing ex-wife, who uses Gilbert and Philip’s newfound fame to wrangle new clients for her latest business venture. And before the screenwriters know what hit them, they’re in the middle of more scandals than they can count—involving Hollywood has-beens, high-end call boys, and secrets that can’t stay that way forever.

My Lucky Star is a clever, fast-paced novel that gives readers an entertaining inside look at how things really work in Hollywood. Though some parts of the book are shockingly explicit, even the explicit scenes end up being less graphic and more humorous.

Author Joe Keenan, an award-winning writer and producer of TV’s Frasier, writes with the style and voice that made Frasier a hit—and it makes My Lucky Star witty and gossipy and nearly impossible to put down.

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