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Follow the Author
Cause Celeb Paperback – February 26, 2002
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About the Author
- Publisher : Penguin Books; Reissue edition (February 26, 2002)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 342 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0142000221
- ISBN-13 : 978-0142000229
- Reading age : 18 years and up
- Grade level : 12 and up
- Item Weight : 8.8 ounces
- Dimensions : 7.6 x 5.5 x 0.65 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,955,806 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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The London celebrity scenes are funny, and on target in their gentle skewering of celebrity life. However, what really got me in this book was the African story, particularly the characters, both relief workers and refugees, that Fielding has created and humanized here. I also learned a lot about the NGO (non-governmental organizations) culture and the problems that have led to repeated crises in Africa, and from what I have read in other places about this book, Fielding does a great job presenting them here within a fictional context.
So if you are looking for a book that combines some chicklit type scenes, good characters, and the solid depth of exploring the roots of world hunger, this is a great book for you.
Part A is like Bridget Jones's Diary except not quite as funny. It's still entertaining, though. Part B is what makes the book most worthwhile. I read the book after encountering comments from Dorothea Hilhorst that Fielding's novel captures the nuances of non-governmental organization work much more accurately than official reports tend to: "The novel...brings out how this NGO is shaped by actors in the organization and their surrounding networks. These people carry out activities according to their understanding of the situation and follow the whims of their personalities, motivated by various combinations of sacrifice, self-interest, vanity and compassion... The novel delightfully turns the refugees into real people--good and bad, loveable and pitiful--who actively endeavor to enrol NGO staff members and visitors to provide the necessary assistance" . I agree that Fielding does this well.
Part C is the weakest, but it pokes some lively, enjoyable fun at celebrities getting involved in charity, both their motives and their lack of real knowledge about the issues.
Overall, I found the book engaging and entertaining and read it in just a week.
Note, for those who are concerned about this sort of thing, that the book has a couple of sexual situations and quite a bit of strong language, as I imagine you would encounter if you actually organized a celebrity charity event.
 Dorothea Hilhorst, The Real World of NGOs: Discourses, Diversity, and Development (London: Zed Books), 2003, quoted in Lewis, Rodgers, and Woolcock, "The Fiction of Development: Literary Representation as a Source of Authoritative Knowledge."
One other frequent problem in some parts of the world was the highjacking of supplies by "official authorities" for stock-piling for later selling at insanely high prices to virtually penniless and homeless victims.
Top reviews from other countries
I recommend it highly. Interesting interplay or career and politics with a hint of romance...