Author: Alyson Noël
Series: Beautiful Idols
Date Started: January 6
Date Finished: January 8
Format: Kindle book
Everyone wants to be someone. Layla Harrison wants to leave her beach-bum days for digs behind a reporter’s desk. Aster Amirpour wants to scream at the next casting director who tells her “we need ethnic but not your kind of ethnic.” Tommy Phillips dreams of buying a twelve-string guitar and using it to shred his way back into his famous absentee dad’s life.
But Madison Brooks took destiny and made it her bitch a long time ago. She’s Hollywood’s hottest starlet, and the things she did to become the name on everyone’s lips are merely a stain on the pavement, ground beneath her Louboutin heel.
That is, until Layla, Aster, and Tommy find themselves with a VIP invite to the glamorous and gritty world of Los Angeles’s nightlife and lured into a high-stakes competition where Madison Brooks is the target. Just as their hopes begin to gleam like stars through the California smog, Madison Brooks goes missing. . . . And all of their hopes are blacked out in the haze of their lies.
This book was a much needed break from the science fiction, paranormal, fantasy haze that I’ve been in recently. It’s a little bit romantic comedy, with also a little bit of drama and mystery thrown in. Of course, the mystery aspect doesn’t get presented until near the end – although the prologue definitely hints at it – but in someways Unrivaled reminds me of Dangerous Girls. Only this book doesn’t keep flashing back and forth between the past and the present. This book leads you up to how Madison Brook’s disappeared and I’m still not sure who did it.
Layla is a dedicated, journalist who keeps writing these ‘Page Six’ like stories for freelancing but she wants to start her own blog and go to journalism school in New York. So when there’s a contest to work for the guy who pretty much knows everyone in Hollywood and the prize is a lot of money. She jumps at the opportunity even if her boyfriend doesn’t approve. On her way to try and snag Madison Brooks to appear at the club she was given to promote, she accidentally spills coffee on the starlet and is given a restraining order because of it.
Tommy was one of those characters I just couldn’t quite figure out. He moves from Oklahoma to LA so he can make it big as a rock star, but he doesn’t end up anywhere but a music store where eventually he gets canned. He kisses and flirts with a lot of girls, but that’s about it. The same goes with Madison who just appears at his club flirts briefly with him and then leaves. And on the night she was last seen, Tommy was really the last person to see her. I’m curious to see what happens to his character in book 2.
Aster, on the other hand, wants to rebel from the life her parents have made for her. She’s being groomed to be the next trophy wife, but that is not what she wants. And she does whatever she can to get out from that mold. Even sleeping with Ryan Hawthorne – Madison Brooks’ boyfriend – who isn’t exactly who he seems and when she wakes up the next morning he isn’t in bed with her.
Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. These characters really play off of each other, but I’m not sure if I like the direction each one was heading in by the end of Unrivaled. I’m still clueless as to who ‘murdered’ Madison Brooks. Although I’m leaning towards Ira. I’m curious to see what happens with Layla and Tommy now that they’re working for him and what exactly happens to Aster as well.
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