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Celebutantes Paperback – February 3, 2009

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

After listening to Gigi Bermingham's reading of the novel from young Hollywood insiders Hopper and Goldberg, it comes as no surprise to learn that the veteran stage and television actress earned both an Ovation Award and an L.A. Drama Critics' Circle Award for performing her solo play Non-Vital Organs. Bermingham juggles the colorful cast of over-the-top characters in this gossipy tale with finesse. As the Hollywood ambassador for her best-gay forever friend and designer Julian Tenent, protagonist Lola Santisi earnestly seeks to heal the scars of her dysfunctional Tinseltown upbringing and overcome career-deficit disorder during Oscar week. Bermingham proves particularly delightful in her portrayal of Lola's nemesis, actress Olivia Cutter, whose mercurial outbursts and oddball phobias manage to generate shock value even by the jaded standards of contemporary celebrity misbehavior. The upbeat musical interludes at the start and end of each CD also help sustain the glitzy ambience. Fans of Ugly Betty and The Devil Wears Prada provide a natural audience for this entertaining production.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.


New York has 'Bergdorf Blondes,' 'Sex and the City' and 'The Nanny Diaries.' And now L.A. has 'Celebutantes'... (Los Angeles Times)

Witty and revealing... a walk-up to that blessed event: the Oscars. You'll feel like you were there. (People (3.5 stars))

A frothy serving of chick lit... delectable. (Entertainment Weekly (A Summer Reading Must Paperback))

A fast-paced satire of Hollywood's awards season in all its crazy glory. (New York Daily News)

A witty and humorous read that takes a revealing look at what really goes on inside the lives of young Hollywood. (Star Magazine) meets Glamour in this insider's look at Oscar week penned by L.A. junior royalty….There's up-to-the-minute star chatter and fashion name-checking throughout. (Publishers Weekly)

A featherweight Tinseltown send-up with a surprisingly well-balanced heroine. (Kirkus)

A terrifying comedy of Hollywood royalty: Celebutantes proves that A-list vanities are still the preserve of the very beautiful, the very brave, or the very, very silly. (Plum Sykes, author of The Debutante Divorcee)

In Hollywood, Academy Awards week is a bigger deal than Christmas week is elsewhere. I've been attending for over thirty years, and the excitement and craziness has never abated. In Celebutantes, two daughters of Hollywood, Amanda Goldberg and Ruthanna Hopper, take us through the Oscar rituals of that mad and magical week with all the inside knowledge that they have grown up knowing. They are remarkably adroit and witty story tellers. Beneath the utter sophistication and gloriously natural name-dropping, there beats a very warm heart. (Dominick Dunne)

Stylish intrigue, glamorous machinations and such juicy fun. No one but Hollywood insiders like Amanda Goldberg and Ruthanna Hopper could tell the tale so perfectly. (Michael Kors)

A hilarious ride through the bumpy Hollywood Hills, complete with a trillion genius nuggets of true insider dish and a silver screen ending. (Jill Kargman, author of Momzillas)

Fashion, film stars and great fun--a young insider's view of Hollywood!" (Anjelica Huston)

Celebutantes is a witty, incisive, under-the-sheets look at the chaos that is Oscar week. I loved it. (Jackie Collins)

An irreverent satire on Hollywood celebrity, delivered with a keen eye for the absurd, Celebutantes is a wise and witty page-turner. (Arianna Huffington)

Nothing is stranger than reality and the reality of Hollywood and our celebrity obsessed culture is brilliantly captured in Celebutantes. Amanda Goldberg and Ruthanna Hopper, both Hollywood insiders, use their wicked sense of humor and keen insight to craft a piercingly intelligent, funny and at times tragic satire of modern-day Hollywood. The authors simultaneously elevate the lives of the beautiful and the famous while also pointing out the emptiness and absurdity of contemporary values. (Tom Ford)

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; 1 Reprint edition (February 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312362307
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312362300
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,818,845 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By C.D.M. on April 12, 2008
Format: Hardcover
If you've read "The Devil Wears Prada," "Bergdorf Blonds," "The Nanny Diaries," "The Second Assistant," or any book of that kind then you've essentially read this book, only it was probably better because those books I actually finished. I love a good beach read book, but this is so badly written that I had to keep telling myself "just read five more pages and see." On page 56 a drugged-out, aging British rock star starts shaving her bikini area using a disposable razor and a cup of Diet Coke . . . what the??? The final paragraph on that page literally starts with the words "Could it get any worse than this?". . . this is where I decided that I really didn't care to find out.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By T. Schaeffer on June 29, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Lola comes from a very famous family, her father a hot-shot director, her brother a sought after music producer. She, however, at twenty-five is still trying to find her niche, something that will make her famous in her own right, not just a daughter of.

She has tried many careers, after graduating from high school she went to art school for a year and created some interesting pieces, but she just couldn't stay committed to it. She also tried fashion design, but was not able to come up with anything superb enough to warrant a full fledged career. Part of the trouble is partly because she has an addiction, one that not many know about, but to her can be just as devastating as any illegal substance. Lola is an Actorholic. This means that every boyfriend she has had to the present has been an actor, all of which having broken her heart into a trillion pieces, but she just can't get enough!

He longest and most devastating was with SMITH (read it and you will figure out why there is a need for caps) a veritable nobody whom, (thanks to the leading lady having to go to rehab) she did a movie with and consequently fell for. Everything with them was great until the reviews came out and brutally ripped apart Lola's performance, after which he breaks up with her because who in there right mind would want to be seen as such a failure? What a loser he is.

After some pretty literal soul searching she decides to make one last valiant effort in the working world by becoming a PR person for her BAF (best gay forever) Julian and try and get a few high ranking celebs to wear some dresses he has designed to get his name out there come Oscar night. Coming from a famous family, however, does not guarantee success, as she runs into one problem after another.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By KZ on October 20, 2009
Format: Paperback
While chick lit isn't my preferred genre, I do LOVE glitzy escapism done right. The best of the genre are equal parts guilty pleasure and smart, witty commentary. I had to read this for work and was excited about it - the cover is sassy, the concept is timely with our tabloid-obsessed culture, and it's written by Hollywood royalty who promise an insider's look - should be fun right? Sigh. Here's another case of entertainment industry nepotism for you.

The writers fall short of expectations that weren't high to begin with. They jump on the bandwagon of high class hijinx but say nothing that we don't already know, plus the writing is EXHAUSTINGLY PAINFUL. The draining prose keeps this cute premise from being any fun. Entire chapters are devoted to name-dropping and brand references, but not to advancing the story. The plot is paper-thin, or, in my parody of their writing style, "thinner than the last remaining limited edition gold Dolce & Gabbana Motorola Razr I wrestled out of ScarJo's well-manicured hands (varnished with Chanel Black Satin Polish, natch) at last year's Vanity Fair Oscar Party gifting suite." If you can stand that cluttered prose, you and your four brain cells might have fun with this.

For those who always defend these types of books by saying "enjoy it for what it is" - my question is, how can you enjoy something that is 300 pages of nails on chalkboard? Just because it's not trying to be heavy and literary doesn't mean it automatically succeeds as light entertainment. These writers are further examples as to how it's easy for the well-connected to succeed in business without really trying.

Skip the book and watch the far superior video trailer.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By chicagoannie on May 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
I bought this book at Target one night after work knowing that I would be calling in sick to work the next day (I really am sick). Two weeks ago I visited LA for the first time & had read "You'll Never Nanny in this Town Again," on the plane ride back to the midwest. THAT was a great read after getting a brief glimpse into the glamorous Hollywood lifestyle. I was hoping Celebutantes would be an easy, fun read too, but, although I'm an avid reader(just finished City of Thieves), unfortunately I'm at page 55 & am deciding this in not the page-turner I was hoping for, & for some reason the characters are confusing to me. I'm not sure if these girls really have Hollywood ties or have made all these scenarios up, and unfortunately I don't care even though I was in the mood for this type of book. I've never read the Nanny Diaries but I'm thinking it will at lest be a better written, light, frivolous read....
Note to the writers: an index about your characters would be helpful. You mix so many real actors with names I've never heard of & I have no idea if they're real people or not, or who they're supposed to be. Perhaps your California friends get it but I don't live there so I'm confused, & I'm sure many non-Californians who try to read your book are too!
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