UK Publication Date: 10 May 2016. 368 pages.
Unrivalled is the latest book from Alyson Noel aimed at a Young Adult audience. Set in the glitzy club world of Hollywood it has a feel of Pretty Little Liars meets Mean Girls. The story centres on three main characters, all wannabees in the search for their own LA success story.
Layla Harrison runs a gossip blog but aspires to be a real journalist. She lives with her artist father and worries about where the money is coming from. It’s been a while since he has had a commission and the ad income on her blog was just a trickle.
Aster Amirpour wants to be an actress. Not an unusual ambition in Hollywood but it is when you come from a strict Iranian family who just want her to marry well and produce lots of chubby grandchildren.
Tommy Phillips has moved to the city from small-town America. He knows he’s got a good voice and is pretty amazing with a guitar so how come he’s working part time in a music store and singing cover versions at coffee shop gigs.
They are all recruited into a competition to promote Hollywood’s hottest nightclubs. All of the promoters are pitted against each other to entice the latest must-have celebrities into their respective establishments. The first two thirds of the book are largely involved with the set-up of the competition. Madeline Brooks is the hottest actress in town and everyone wants to say they got her and her boyfriend Ryan into their club.
Stick with it though. The storyline does pick up towards the end of the book. The disappearance of one of the major characters allows you to get to know the three main kids a little better and they cease to be quite as annoying. It’s a set up novel for a new Beautiful Idols series and it does have a lot of promise.
Check out the book trailer on You Tube for a quick introduction to the dark and competitive world of Unrivalled.
Supplied by Net Galley and the Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Prolific reader, enthusiastic theatre and movie-goer and ex-Olivier Awards judge who spent twenty years working in the music industry in London. I love sharing my favourite books with friends - nearly always spoiler-free as I hate reading a synopsis of the whole book in other reviews.