Author: Catherine McKenzie
Source: Publisher (ARC)
In this funny and touching novella, bestselling author Catherine McKenzie returns to the story of Amber Sheppard, It Girl and celebrity train wreck from McKenzie’s reader-favourite novel, Spin.
Life has been rough for starlet Amber since leaving rehab. She’s been two years sober, but no one seems to believe her — not the gossip media, not casting agents, and most certainly not her spotlight-loving parents. With her friendships ruined by betrayal and her career at a standstill, Amber’s just trying to get her life back on track. It doesn’t help that her former love, movie star Connor Parks, keeps trying to draw Amber back in, not just to their relationship but to his hard-partying ways. One fateful night, Amber breaks down and agrees to join him on board his private jet as it readies for take-off — a decision that will change her life forever and expose her to a whole new level of scrutiny and heartbreak.
Thank you to Catherine McKenzie for sending me an ARC of this book!
Spin, Catherine McKenzie’s debut novel, was one of my favourite books read. It was one of those books that I didn’t expect to love and I had completely different expectations for it before I even cracked it open, so I was pleasantly surprised that the book turned out to be nothing like expected — and in a good way.
Spun isn’t about the main character, Kate, who I loved in Spin, but instead about Amber, the star that Kate was to befriend in Spin. While I loved Kate instantly, I didn’t find that I could connect all that well with Amber. I’m pretty sure she had a bit of humour to her, but it wasn’t a laugh out loud kind of humour that I wanted. In a way, the whole story was kind of dark and not at all what I was expecting. It was a short read, just enough to appease the readers of Spin who wanted more Amber, but I do think that if you enjoyed Kate more than Amber in Spin, then this one could be skipped.
Now don’t get me wrong! I do love Catherine’s writing and will definitely be seeking out more of her stuff in the future, but I just couldn’t connect with this book like I had expected to. It does have its merits in that it’s got heart and some very touching scenes. We get a little bit into the head of someone who has been in the eye of the papparazzi since she was young and the craziness that a lifestyle like that brings. There is plenty of friendship and heartbreak packed into this small volume, making it a quick read for a lazy summer day.
If you love Catherine McKenzie and Spin, then I do suggest giving this one a try. I might not have been in the right mindset to read it, but I do believe that Catherine is still one of the hidden gems of Canadian writers.