Thursday, June 23, 2011

Groundswell by Katie Lee

Goodreads: EAT, SURF, LOVE. A butterfly flaps its wings in New York City . . . and a groundswell forms in Mexico. . . .

Sometimes the biggest ripples come from the smallest events. Like the day that Emma Guthrie walks into world-famous movie star Garrett Walker’s trailer. When she steps through the door, she’s a novice PA who’s just dropped out of college after losing her scholarship. When she walks out, she’s on her way to becoming Mrs. Emma Walker—wife of an A-list actor. Soon, Emma has made the transition from nobody to red-carpet royalty, trading jeans and flip-flops for closets full of Chanel and Birkin bags, swishing past velvet ropes to attend every lavish party and charity gala on both coasts. With her husband’s encouragement, Emma pens a screenplay based on her life, Fame Tax, which becomes a blockbuster sensation. Through it all, Garrett is her ally and her mentor . . . until their relationship is thrown into question by an incriminating text message that Emma discovers on Garrett’s phone the night of the Met Costume Institute Gala.

Devastated by her husband’s infidelity and hounded mercilessly by the paparazzi, Emma must flee New York City to get away from it all and clear her head. Her destination? A sleepy coastal town in Mexico where no one recognizes her and there is nothing but unspoiled beaches for miles. Here, she meets Ben, a gorgeous, California-born surf instructor, who teaches her about the healing powers of surfing, shows her the joys of the simple life, and ultimately opens her up to the possibility of love.

From Manhattan’s hippest restaurants to the yacht-and-celebrity infested waters of St. Barts, Katie Lee’s debut novel is an irresistible insider’s glimpse into a glittering world—and a captivating story about how losing everything you thought you wanted can be the first step to finding what you need.

My take: Katie Lee knows about the Hollywood lifestyle. She became a Hollywood presence on her own and then married Billy Joel. With the old adage, "Write what you know," Katie does exactly that.

This was simply a good, solid book. It's not life changing but the author tells a solid story without a lot of superfluous information. Perhaps another person might not be as interested in the details of a silver screen star and his social life but it fascinated me. But not only does the author describe the life of Garrett and the superficial way of being, she adds depth to her characters. Garrett is not vilified but multi-dimensional. I never loved Garrett but I understood why Emma did.

Emma is a likeable protagonist. She's your girl next door that captures a star's heart. She could be you or me. Is this a thinly veiled autobiography? I hope not because the flavor of fiction is much more enjoyable to believe.

The idea of "groundswell" does not come into play until nearly the end of the book as Emma is learning the art of surfing. This is also where Emma learns life lessons that could be applied to anybody's life. The ocean represents life and the way it can not be controlled or tamed, although we try really hard to do so. Surfing can only be achieved by giving in to the waves will. Don't panic because that's when the trouble really starts. Feel the waves and rise to the occasion.

I liked it.

Katie Lee is the food and lifestyle contributor for The Early Show and has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Rachel Ray Show, The Nate Berkus Show, Today, The Martha Stewart Show, CBS Sunday Morning, Top Chef, and Iron Chef America. She has been featured in People, Vanity Fair, Town & Country, and InStyle. She is the author of the cookbooks The Comfort Table and The Comfort Table: Recipes for Everyday Occasions. She lives in the Hamptons.

3.5 -4 stars

Thanks to Simon and Schuster, I have two copies to offer! Fill out the form below.

Ends July 7th.

1 comment:

Harpreet Singh said...

Thanks for the chance of winning this book! I really REALLY want to read it!! :D