Friday, September 19, 2014

Almost Royalty: A Romantic Comedy...of Sorts by Courtney Hamilton

Courtney Hamilton is a Velveeta-loving attorney driven to distraction by a city that seethes with soul-sucking status seekers. When her friend Marcie formulates an impossibly detailed rating system for acceptable men--the Los Angeles Eco-Chain of Dating--Courtney goes on a self-destructive binge that doesn’t stop until she gets thrown out of group therapy for insulting a former child actress.

Courtney is mortified as she watches her best friends give up stellar careers in law and the arts to marry entertainment royalty and civilian overachievers. Worse, they expect Courtney to do the same. So they hatch plots to get her to give up her career, break her addiction to fake cheese, marry into high-orbit wealth and rule the stratosphere alongside them.

But Courtney resists. She doesn’t want to be a poster child for the Opt-Out Generation. And she certainly doesn’t want to be molded into date bait for the top rung of L.A. society. All Courtney wants is to be left alone so she can search beneath the surface for a meaningful life. But between a meddling, narcissistic mother, a self-absorbed therapist and friends trying to send her to dating re-education camps, it seems that fake cheese is the only genuine thing left in the city. Social ambition combats self-actualization in this biting tale of one woman’s search for certainty in a city full of mirages.

   As I started reading the first chapter I was instantly hooked and couldn’t wait to get further into the novel. The first thing I loved was the way there was a chart of who’s dateable and who isn’t dateable which is called “Eco-Chain of Dating” in the book.  Each chapter in the book had a subtitle included (i.e. 10—How I Can Be More Perfect Than You.) I noticed that the subtitle of the chapter was what the author was dealing with at that point and in an offhand sort of way it gives the reader a little piece of wisdom as well.  

     At first I thought it was a work of fiction and once I read the back of the book a second time I realized that it was a memoir of Ms. Hamilton’s life. I thought there were a few areas in the book that made me laugh, but there were other areas that I felt aggravation and frustration at other people in Ms. Hamilton’s life. I couldn’t stand the author’s mom and I found most of her friends to be a tad on the “bitchy” and self-centered side of things. I thought Courtney Hamilton should have gotten some better friends.  

     I found the chapters to be a little long, but once I got halfway through the first chapter I didn’t really notice how long they were anymore. Overall I found this book to be a wonderful read and I think it will give readers a glimpse into how women try to be “Hollywood Royalty” and what they are willing to do to get there. I give Ms. Hamilton and Almost Royalty an “A.”

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  Tiffany

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The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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