Book Cover and Synopsis:
Kara McKormick is told
she's auditioning to star in a new teen variety show. But it's what she
isn't told that could change her life.
The feisty New Yorker
moves to sunny Orlando to participate in a month-long audition, where
she'll live with nine other contestants and an eccentric housemother.
Kara knows that the show already has a big-time celebrity lined up for
the co-host, but she doesn't know who it is.
Chad Beacon quickly
rose to fame after winning America's Next Star, but he doesn't want his
entire career to be about singing. There is so much more he wants to
do-like act. The new variety show sounds like the perfect next step for
him, but his parents want him to have a co-star who shares his faith
since they'll be spending so much time together.
Acting is high
on Kara's priority list. But a relationship with God? Not so much. In
fact, she's tried to stay away from anything religious. But God is after
Kara's heart and He's put people in her life who are showing her
there's far more to Christianity than rules and judgment.
Just when it seems that Kara's going to have to give up her acting
dream, God reveals that she may have a starring role after all-in a
story so big only He could write it.
I always get a huge kick out of novels that involve showbiz or celebrities, and what do you know, this one has both! Starring Me is a fun and lighthearted story that shows what it's like for a spunky teen girl trying to break into showbiz; and on the flip side, it also shows the difficulty that celebrity status can bring.
Kara is extremely lively; at her age of 17 she can be a bit over-the-top at times, but her enthusiasm brings a ton of life to the story. She's genuinely nice and isn't vicious or mean-spirited in her quest to win the part of TV co-host - unlike the other girls vying for the part! It's really cool to see all the events that happened in the past that brought Kara to her current situation; all her Christian friends keep telling her that God is pursuing her, and although she's curious, Kara's just not sure what to think about the whole faith issue yet.
Chad is a decent guy, and he hasn't let his pop-star fame go to his head...in fact, his fame has gotten to be too much, and he's looking to scale back from pop-star to a simple TV host. At 17 he's still obedient to his parents' wishes, even if he's not sure they're entirely right. His parents are older and at times seemed a bit stiff to me, but I think this stems from their overprotective attitude. They are insistent that Chad's new TV co-star be a Christian girl of their choosing, nothing else is an option. I kind of doubt a network would let a teenage actor and his parents have so much control, however for the sake of the story it was a unique twist and brought the pieces and situations together in a fun way.
Starring Me is somewhat of a sequel to Krista McGee's previous book First Date, although it's able to stand alone as well. I happened to read Starring Me first, and while I didn't have any trouble jumping into the story, it was obvious the first book would've contained the back-story for several characters. (Be aware that Starring Me ends up giving away much of the plot for First Date, so if you have any interest in First Date at all, I would definitely recommend reading it first.)
My Rating: 4 stars
Thanks to the publisher (Thomas Nelson) for providing me with an e-arc via NetGalley for review.