Thursday, April 18, 2013

Book Review: Starstruck by Rachel Shukert

By Rachel Shukert
Release Date: March 12, 2013
Source: Publisher
Summary: A golden age of glam . . . 

Every week they arrive in Los Angeles--beautiful and talented young hopefuls who dream of becoming stars. It's all Margaret Frobisher has ever wanted—and when she's discovered by a powerful agent, she can barely believe her luck. She's more than ready to escape her snobby private school and conservative Pasadena family for a chance to light up the silver screen.

The competition is fierce at Olympus Studios and Margaret—now Margo—is chasing her Hollywood dreams alongside girls like Gabby Preston, who at 16 is already a grizzled show-biz veteran caught between the studio and the ravenous ambition of her ruthless mother, and sultry Amanda Farraday, who seems to have it all--ambition, glamour . . . and dirty secrets. Missing from the pack is Diana Chesterfield, the beautiful actress who mysteriously disappeared, and there are whispers that Diana's boyfriend—Margo's new co-star—may have had something to do with it. Margo quickly learns that fame comes with a price, and that nothing is what it seems.   

Set in Old Hollywood, Starstruck follows the lives of three teen girls as they live, love, and claw their way to the top in a world where being a star is all that matters.

Review: I had no idea this was a historical fiction book (set in the late 1930s), but it was definitely a pleasant surprise! I've never read a book about old Hollywood, and I think Rachel Shukert did a great job creating a young adult story about such a glamorous time that may not have been so glamorous...

Margaret has been obsessed with Hollywood every since she could remember, but with her strict parents and looming coming-out debutante ball, Hollywood is the last thing she should be worried about. One day, though, Margaret is approached by an agent who wants to make her a star. Margaret changes her name to Margo, leaves behind her life, and goes to work for Olympus Studios where she's acting with the people she'd been idolizing on the big screen. But Margaret soon finds out their lives aren't as glamorous as the tabloids showed them to be. Margaret must learn how to survive in Hollywood while maintaining her reputation and newfound friendships. 

The story mainly focuses on Margaret, but there are also little inserts of the lives of two other actresses Amanda and Gabby. While it was fun being able to see three very different lives in Hollywood, I wish we could have focused solely on Margaret or equally among the three girls. We didn't really get a whole lot about the other two, so their parts of the story were just a weird interruption on Margaret's story of making it in Hollywood. 

I love movies, so reading a book that takes place in Hollywood in the 1930s was beyond cool to me. They would mention actresses like Katherine Hepburn and I just got sucked into to the old Hollywood glamour story being told. There was plenty of scandal and secrets going on, which made things really juicy. 

Overall, this was a really unique book that I enjoyed quite a lot, but the balance of the stories between three girls was just a little off. If you're a fan of the 1930s era or the movie business, I'd definitely recommend this one! You're going to be in for a fun YA read during a fabulous time of glitz, glamour, and scandal.


  1. This was such a fun review! I love movies and old Hollywood as well, so I have a feeling that I would enjoy this one. It sounds like it was just a really fun book! Is it a stand alone?

  2. It's the first in a series of three! I read it too and can't wait for the next one.

    1. Oh, I didn't know that! That's so exciting! Thanks for sharing :)

  3. Ooh this books sound great, Great Review Jessica! I love the idea of a story about old Hollywood with a bit of scandal, my guilty pleasure is the Hollywood minute, hehe. I love your blog, I'm a old follower. I'd love it if you could check out my blog. Happy Blogging :D

    - Sunny @


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