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Starstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails: A Second Acts Novel [Kindle Edition]

Julia Dumont
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

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Book Description

As her Second Acts Dating Service truly takes off, Cynthia Amas discovers that in the heady world of high-end Hollywood romance, with success comes complexity. In this wildly seductive romp through the lush canyons and lavish neighborhoods of Los Angeles, the line between business and pleasure quickly blurs in a dizzying rush of sex and celebrity. Just as our heroine’s uncanny genius for matching up her growing roster of exclusive love seekers continues to deepen, her own love life reaches a fever pitch. Things get complicated. And funny. And excruciatingly sensual. Cynthia’s high-maintenance lovelorn mother, her maddeningly hot ex-fling Max, a long-lost high school crush, and of course her best friend, the libidinous, star-crazed Lolita and her mysterious pack of telepathic canines, are all along for the ride. Not to mention one very rich, very famous film producer. On top of everything else, her newest, most important client is literally the biggest movie star in the world. In more ways than one. When it comes to extra curriculars, he is the hardest-working stud in show business. Try as Cynthia may to hook him up with any number of gorgeous ladies in waiting, his notoriously one-track mind is set on her. She’s determined to steer the dating service to the next level, but it’s hard to focus, let alone keep your hands on the wheel, when you’re hot, bothered, and nearly driven to distraction along the steamy highways and byways of love and lust. What a way to make a living.


Editorial Reviews

Review

Heavy on humor and sharp detail, author Julia Dumont’s Starstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails has the gravitas and honesty that is reminiscent of a top notch “Sex and the City” episode. The story, which is part of the “Second Acts” series, revolves around the busy life of Cynthia Amas, who owns and operates a high class dating service. Unable to find romance for herself, she has become adept at matchmaking for friends and strangers alike. Dumont’s world is loaded with other intriguing people, in particular Cynthia’s best friend and dog whisperer Lolita Albion. Her comical mess of a life provides some of the book’s best humor, highlighted by a raunchy ride on a scooter with Cynthia’s sometime lover Max. Of course, it wouldn’t be a romance novel without the love scenes, and there are several steamy ones. . . Dumont knows exactly how far to push the envelope. She gradually draws readers in with tenderness, and builds to the kind of scene that romance readers expect. Starstruck Romance is fun-filled and lighthearted escapism that delivers laughs AND passion. – Jeff Favre, HerBusyLife.com

From the Inside Flap

Starstruck Romance Is Sexy, Funny New Novel

By Jeff Favre
HerBusyLife Critic

Racy romance novels are making a comeback into the mainstream, thanks, in part, to the phenomenon that is Fifty Shades of Gray.

The landscape may be a little edgier than the days when Fabio adorned the covers of Harlequin romances, but the quality for the genre remains mostly substandard.

One of the few exceptions is Julia Dumont’s Starstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails, which strikes an intelligent balance between titillating exploits and well-rounded character development.

Heavy on humor and sharp detail, Starstruck Romance has the gravitas and honesty that is reminiscent of a top notch “Sex and the City” episode.

The story, which is part of the “Second Acts” series, revolves around the busy life of Cynthia Amas, who owns and operates a high class dating service. Unable to find romance for herself, she has become adept at matchmaking for friends and strangers alike.

In this tale, Cynthia’s personal life gets complicated when she takes on a famous A-list actor, Jack Stone, as a client. He wants a woman who is not after him for his celebrity status, and it turns out that Cynthia might be that someone. But Cynthia is torn between the chance at dating a star and the possibility of rekindling an old romance with musician Pete Blatt.

Dumont’s world is loaded with other intriguing people, in particular Cynthia’s best friend and dog whisperer Lolita Albion. Her comical mess of a life provides some of the book’s best humor, highlighted by a raunchy ride on a scooter with Cynthia’s sometime lover Max.

Dumont shows remarkable detail when it comes to the Los Angeles landscape. Her use of real locations and insider info will be fun for locals, and fascinating to outsiders. Also, her quick wit and ability to keep the story moving means there are no dull moments throughout the 160 page novel.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a romance novel without the love scenes, and there are several steamy ones. There is definitely an art form to using graphic language and strong sexual situations without sounding smutty or pedestrian. Dumont knows exactly how far to push the envelope. She gradually draws readers in with tenderness, and builds to the kind of scene that romance readers expect.

Starstruck Romance is fun-filled and lighthearted escapism that delivers laughs AND passion.


Product Details

  • File Size: 385 KB
  • Print Length: 271 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0985540451
  • Publisher: BroadLit (September 4, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0094IJ23A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #334,471 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spice up your book club. September 20, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
My friends and I had kind of gotten into a rut in our book club (especially now that Oprah's selections are over), so we decided to read our first romance novel and had heard good things about this author. Ladies, I can't recommend this book for your book clubs enough--it was funny, it was well-written, but most of all it was SEXY! Our normal one hour meeting went over two hours--let's just say it inspired people to share lots of thoughts, feelings and personal stuff that they'd never shared before! We all fell in love with Cynthia, the book's man-flawed heroine, and we've already scheduled the other book in the series for next month--definitely a great series to spice up your book club!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Second book in series October 1, 2012
Format:Paperback
I liked this book way more than the first "Sleeping With Dogs and Other Lovers". Which is unfortunate because I think you need to read the first for the second to make sense. I'm still not sold on the whole dog-as-a-mystical-creature aspect (I think the story would be just as good without the apparent super-natural sideline). However, this book is well written and funny. The sex scenes are just as steamy as the first book and the character development continues to progress nicely. The series is certainly worth reading and I'm very hopeful the books will continue to improve.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Starstruck Romance Is Hilarious November 3, 2012
Format:Paperback
Starstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails: A Second Acts Novel paper book
Starstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails: A Second Acts NovelKindle

This was theater of the absurd in an extremely funny way. The sex was more funny than titillating; the heroine wasn't interested in the leading man who kept coming onto her while insisting that he wanted to find his One and Only; everybody lies to everybody; the heroine wants her childhood boyfriend whom she manages to insult and drive off; the heroine loses her best friend (temporarily) because of lying; her mother becomes engaged to a philanderer of the first water; and everybody gallops off in all directions. Chaos is not the word for it, but I can't think of a stronger one. I laughed myself sick over it.

It lacks all moral value and is not enlightening in any way. But these are not its goals, and I am not in its intended audience.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sexy AND smart -- September 20, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I picked this book up because my girlfriends kept insisting how hot the romance scenes were--and they were certainly right. There's a three page love scene that I actually had to stop in the middle of so I could collect myself--now that's sexy. What I didn't expect, however, was how funny and smart the book would be. Like I said, I was pretty much just in it for the sex, if I'm being honest, but the lead character Cynthia is so funny, and the exchanges between her and Jack were so snappy and witty they reminded me of Cybil Shepherd and Bruce Willis on Moonlighting. Dumont also packs the book with lots of cool references to old Hollywood, which I really loved. I must say, it's refreshing to be able to get some titillation and some quality reading from the same book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun read September 16, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Fun,easy,sexy and different read it left me wanting more I can't wait to read the next book. I loved that there was a lot of humor in this book as well and some steamy romance. Fun book i recommend it :) Happy Reading
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 2nd Book's the Charm! June 13, 2013
By Janet
Format:Kindle Edition
Wow. I liked the first book in the series, but I can actually say I loved this 2nd installment. I don't believe the book would work as a stand-alone, I am glad I read them in order. This book is well written, I connected emotionally with the characters, the sex scenes were passionate without being gratuitous - all in all a superb read. I will be recommending both books to our Between The Sheets book club.
Looking forward to more from Ms. Dumont.
I rated the book a 4 because it was so well written and because of it's emotional impact.
*I received my copy from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Second of Second Acts Is A Winner! December 10, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Startstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails: A Second Acts Novel was a better sophomore offering from Julia Dumont in my humble opinion.

Our busy high class dating service owner, Cynthia Amas, returns as she scores her most famous client yet, former A-list actor, Jack Stone. He presents her biggest challenge, to find him a woman who doesn't want him because he's famous. Try as she might to find him the woman he seeks, only she seems to fit the bill. Complicating matters further is another of Cynthia's old romances, musician Pete Blatt.

Author Dumont flexes her classically trained writing muscles in this book more than her previous offering, Sleeping with Dogs and Other Lovers. Cynthia's life plays out like a Divine Comedy, complete with many of the cast of characters in book one, to include her mother, her BFF Lolita, and sometimes Friend with Benefits, Max.

The author employs a breakneck wit in this book that was weighed down by the gifted dogs in the first installment. She intersperses a lively plot with love scenes that read like a work of art, not an anatomy class laden with crass smutty words.

This story does what book one didn't do seamlessly. It imbues the kink with a humor that doesn't overpower the romance.

I give Starstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails 4 out of 5 stars.

Broadlit via Netgalley provided me a copy of this book for the purpose of reviewing.
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More About the Author

The Not-So-Authorized Bio of Julia Dumont

Julia Dumont is not my real name. I have a secret life, which is why I have to keep my true identity hidden. My fellow university professors would never understand why a very serious literary professor such as myself would ever confess her addiction to reading romance novels, much less to her passion for writing them. And, because I find my heroine, Cynthia Amas, constantly talking in my head, and myself relating to her in ways I don't know how to explain, I can't stop myself from writing her crazy story. Maybe I am possessed, but I don't care!

I have spent more than 20 years worshipping my literary heroes - Jane Austin, D.H. Lawrence, Thomas Hardy, Emily Bronte, William Faulkner and F. Scott Fitzgerald to name only a few - but if I am going to be honest with you (at least to a point), I have to confess that one of my favorite guilty pleasures is to steal away and lose myself in the deliciously naughty novels of Nora Roberts, Danielle Steel, and Janet Evanovich. Their stories make me dream, fantasize, love, laugh and cry. And they always leave me wanting more, hungry for their next books. Somewhere along the way, I found myself wishing that I could write books like theirs that women would lust after.

Maybe it's a midlife crisis -- I have just turned 43 -- but Cynthia's story has really spiced up my life (and my husband Dilbert's). Much to my surprise, Dilbert (not his real name either) has been so supportive that he doesn't even complain when I am burning the midnight oil writing the next chapter in Cynthia's rollercoaster of a life story. Although we have no children, we do have three canine companions who we dote on: Popeye, our regal standard poodle who keeps us well-mannered, Lucy, our Aussie who is constantly guarding against intruders, and Milo our half collie/half German shepherd mix who has the soul of a Zen master.

Our happy human and canine family lives in Southern California and we can't figure out which one of us loves more our Sunday morning tradition of a long, exhilarating walk on one of those famous California beaches. Popeye prefers to keep his paws dry and strut in the sand, but Lucy loves to chase the beach birds endlessly, while we think Milo believes he can actually fly!

Please visit www.TruLovestories.com

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