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Elimination Night: A Novel Hardcover – January 8, 2013

3.1 out of 5 stars 160 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Assistant producer Sasha King is forced to step into her boss’ shoes to wrangle the celebrity judges for the thirteenth season of the music-talent-competition show, Project Icon. After caustic judge Nigel Crowther decamps to start his own competition, the producers of Icon bring in aging rocker Joey Lovecraft and Latin diva Bibi Vasquez to fill the vacancy. Joey and Bibi compete over everything, from getting the best perks to currying favor with the audience. Sasha finds herself stuck trying to prevent Bibi from taking cues from her Svengali-like manager and to stop Joey from abusing drugs and sleeping with the contestants. Sasha just wants to earn enough money to join her boyfriend, Brock, in Hawaii and write her great American novel, but as the season winds on, she finds that she’s less invested in her relationship and unexpectedly growing more attached to Icon and its eccentric cast of characters. This thinly veiled comedic send-up of American Idol will no doubt find plenty of readers among those who love the hit series. --Kristine Huntley


“Scandal!” —AOL Music

“Rings deliciously true.” —People

“More withering than Simon Cowell, crazier than Paula Abdul — it’s the novel that will have Hollywood on a witch hunt.” —New York Post

"Sex, drugs and scandal are part of the story, as is a savage portrait of someone who could be mistaken for Ryan Seacrest...[A] fun read." — New York Daily News

"I absolutely adored Elimination Night. I loved Sasha most of all... she's the type of girl you want to be friends with. It's brilliant." — Chick Lit Reviews and News

“Anyone who has ever watched American Idol, and that will be almost everyone, will have the immense satisfaction of the ‘inside scoop,’ real or not.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Like a reality-show version of The Devil Wears Prada… with tantalizingly plausible nuggets.” –USA Today

"Elimination Night is as absorbingly entertaining as a certain televised singing competition. The anonymous author's biting roman à clef may seem fueled by hyperbolic satire, but that is the only rational response to the manic microcosm it depicts. Even a noted curmudgeonly judge from the U.K. would have to pass this full-throated send-up on to the next round with flying, hilarious colors.” –Teddy Wayne, author of The Love Song of Jonny Valentine and Kapitoil

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: New Harvest; 1 edition (January 8, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0547942079
  • ISBN-13: 978-0547942070
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (160 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,384,959 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

There has been much speculation about the identity of ANONYMOUS in the press. A well-known celebrity? A low-level TV producer? For reasons of confidentiality, however, the publisher can confirm only that the writer has deep inside knowledge of a hit reality TV talent competition. It was this knowledge that inspired the fictional story told in Elimination Night.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
If you are a fan of shows like American Idol and wondered how it all comes together, here's a book for you! It's an anonymously written behind the scenes tale of Sasha, who herds judges and contestants, describes the crazy contracts and egos, and tries to make a living out of all that, all the while dreaming about writing the great American novel with her (now stoned) boyfriend in Hawaii. It's a pretty entertaining story, and the veiled identities are not too obscure--sounded a lot like Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler recently. Ryan aka Wayne in this story was kinda over the top--puppy stew?--but I could see most of his ego taking it all in. What I missed was a little more on the contestants--they were almost thrown in as afterthoughts. Was Little Nub supposed to be Scotty McCreary? It was like a compilation of a bunch of contestants, none of which I related to or really cared about. Maybe that was the point, that it's not really about contestants at all? Dunno. Sasha works hard, forms relationships, and comes to some realizations about the work she is doing, wrapped up neatly at the end. Definitely a fun read, like eating the marshmallows on top of hot cocoa, kind of fun--they are good, a nice treat, then it's over, and you move on.
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I've only watched one season of American Idol, but it was enough to thoroughly enjoy this book. I happen to know a singer who auditioned for the show and had to sign an contract that said that no matter what the vote count by the audience, the producers have the last say. To say that the show is rigged for ratings, is an understatement.

While reading Elimination Night was a hoot, I found it difficult to connect with the main character, Sasha(Bill)King. It took almost a hundred pages to decide that I even wanted to finish the book. I loved the backstage antics of the judges, so I kept reading. Joey Lovecraft(Steven Tyler) was especially touching and wise in a ridiculous way. Joey's honesty shined like a beacon in the darkness of the giant egos that put on the show Icon. Joey knew what the game was, yet played it his way, making the show not just about making money, but helping out other singers.

Bibi(Jennifer Lopez), the star judge, was a woman so insecure about herself that she had to have people to do everything for her, including telling her if a contestant was any good or not. How come the more power a woman has, the less she relies on herself? Or so it would seem with the celebrities we read about in the tabloids. Who hasn't heard of Rhianna getting beat up by Chris Brown, and then there's Brittany, who dates bad boys as a way of life. Back the book . . .

The host of the show, Wayne(Ryan Seacrest) is a psychopath, is such a hollow, despicable character, that it's a wonder anyone can work with him. Wayne is the one character that I found hard to believe in this book. Can Ryan really be that bad? I won't give away his most horrendous act, but it's enough to make you lose your breakfast . . . for a week at least.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
As an aficionado of reality television, in all its silly manifestations, I have often wondered how the shows really work. What is real and what is scripted. How the contestants are chosen. What the crew really does. This funny and frank novel lets the reader in on what goes on behind the scenes during the troubled thirteenth season of a classic American competitive reality show.

Our heroine, Sasha, has taken a job as an assistant producer on "Project Icon." "Project Icon" is a singing competition which has a panel of three celebrity judges, cattle-call contestant rounds, a sleazy, well-groomed host and which eliminates final contestants by means of viewer call-in results -- sound familiar? Sasha's job as an assistant producer turns out to be a glorified low-level "go-fer" who isn't even important enough to be called by her correct name. (Everyone calls her "Bill," for perfectly legitimate reasons.) What Sasha really wants out of life is to write the "American Novel of Immense Profundity" (she has the first three sentences), and save up enough money to join her boyfriend on the beaches of Hawaii. What she gets is a manic year of dealing with the absurdity of the mammoth egos and power plays of studio bosses, horrid gossip columnists, the judges (one of whom is a paranoid movie star and another who is a aging rock legend), and a myriad of weird contestants looking for fame and fortune.

The book is not just fluff. The characters ring true. For instance, the rock legend, Joey, grows through the book from a cartoonish stereotype to a person who is relatable. The author shows his gumption at clawing his way to the top, and his determination to stay relevant.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
With the proliferation of ridiculous TV reality shows, an industry of the absurd and unbelievable has been created. And the American public seems to have a voracious appetite for the next big thing as any semblance of truthfulness has been eroded for the sake of manufactured drama. As someone who loves much of reality television, I can (at least) admit that it generally appeals to my baser instincts. "American Idol" is the clear (I would say thinly veiled, but there's no veil at all) target of the new satiric novel "Elimination Night." Penned by Anonymous, I was really looking forward to an insightful and hilarious skewering of one of TV's biggest institutions. Instead of laughing along with the novel, though, I found sections of it downright painful. There is a difference between satire and maliciousness, and the book is so spot-on in its depictions as to be somewhat uncomfortable to read.

Ostensibly, the story is about a young TV producer who accidentally finds herself in the mayhem of an "American Idol" like program. A monumental shake up has just occurred within the program as the biggest judge has left for his own show, creating a void that must be filled by a new panel. Sound familiar? With a cast of characters that represent personalities such as Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson, Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez, and Ryan Seacrest (among others), "Elimination Night" doesn't try to employ cleverness to tell its tale. The plot, such as it is, revolves around one season of the show from the selection of the new judges through the finale night. The central character is simply a stand-in to report on the craziness and nastiness and double standards associated with this type of programming. Her narrative arc is secondary to the book's main purpose.
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