My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Behind the Scenes by Dahlia Adler was a quick and sweet YA romance. Adler explores Hollywood life and what really is “normal” as well as some deeper family issues. I really enjoyed this one and found myself unable to put it down until I found out how things ended.
Ally is a “normal” teen who just happens to have a best friend (Van) in the “business”. Van just got the lead role in the new teen drama Daylight Falls and despite the fact that she is becoming more popular, she continues to have a solid friendship with Ally. This was one of the pieces of the story that I really loved. It is clear these friends have very different upbringings and backgrounds but despite that, they are able to support and rely on each other.
As things are changing for Van, Ally is also facing some changes. Her family is facing some serious challenges and at the same time, Ally is trying to come up with a way to fulfill her dream of attending Columbia University. She has the grades but she now has to come up with a plan for tuition. As a result, Van proposes Ally become her assistant (paid) and continues to do whatever she can to help Ally get money. This includes offering her up as a French tutor to Liam…which Ally accepts.
Liam is definitely a swoony guy and he has had a very different life than Ally. Again, despite that, he and Ally start to become close and eventually end up dating. Sounds great right?? Well…at the same time, Van’s agent decides it would be great publicity if Van and Liam became a thing and because she thinks it is best for Van’s career, Ally agrees with the plan. Here is where things start to go downhill for these characters.
Obviously it is hard on Ally to never get to go out with her boyfriend. What she doesn’t realize (or see) is just how hard it is for Van and Liam as well. I get it though…she always felt like a bit of an outsider and she always felt insecure as to why Liam was with her. Add to this the fact that she starts to question Van’s motives and loyalty and I am sure you can see where this is headed. I will say, based on how close these friends were supposed to be, I found it odd that Ally wouldn’t have spoken to Van immediately to share her concerns.
As the story progresses, these characters hit some rough patches but there are also some good patches for them all. I can’t give everything away but I thought Liam was the perfect love interest and there is a good mix of angst, friendship, swoons, and funny stuff to keep me entertained. If you are looking for a quick and fun read, definitely check this one out.
Thank you to Edelweiss & Spencer Hill for the review copy.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars