Forging Success

From the voice of Lorelei Gilmore (literally, if you’re listening on audiobook) is this fun and fulfilling book about a young(ish) actress in New York working and striving to find success and happiness in both a business and city often characterized by a certain harshness.

Francis Banks is approaching her late twenties and her self-imposed deadline to “be successful” or give up acting in favor of more “reasonable” career goals. We journey with Franny through her final year before deadline day as she stumbles through career, relationships, and life in general, all on the way to finding herself.

This book is thoroughly enjoyable, even if a little predictable. I do not know if the story is in any way auto-biographical, though - if I were to guess - I would say it is. And this is largely due to Franny being a delightfully well-rounded, lovable and flawed character. She seems like someone you know, or perhaps she seems like a part of yourself. At every turn, you are rooting for her success even as you watch her put obstacles in her own way. Because we’ve all been there. We probably are all still currently there.

I often find actresses difficult characters to like in a literary sense. And before anyone is offended, know many of my closest friends and a majority of my colleagues are actresses. They are great, and very much individuals like the “rest of us.” But on page, actresses often come across as self-centered and manic, with low self-esteem and, more often than not, carrying “Daddy issue” baggage. Not to mention the stigmas of the theatre not being a “real” career and acting especially just being some version of playing pretend. Taken separately, none of these things are special or specific to any one group of characters over another but throw them together and you get “Protagonist Actress Stew.” I don’t like it, and truthfully, I’m sure my actress friends don’t either. BUT like most stereotypes, there exists some truth and Lauren Graham pretty magnificently manages to walk that line. Franny is all these things at times, but she’s also hardworking, kind, compassionate, determined and smart.

Someday, Someday, Maybe is light-hearted fare. It’s supposed to be fun and perhaps a bit frivolous, but myself and the majority of book readers enjoy those kinds of stories. Which means a strong, identifiable female lead in a fluffier piece can be just as important as the feminist manifestos of Margaret Atwood.

Someday, Someday, Maybe

by Lauren Graham


#fiction #greataudiobooks

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Favorite Book of 2020 So Far

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Tales of a Female Nomad is the story of Rita Golden Gelman, an ordinary woman who is living an extraordinary existence. At the age of 48, on the verge of divorce, Rita left an elegant life in LA to follow her dream of connecting with people in cultures all over the world. This book encourages us to dust off our dreams and rediscover the joy so many of us bury when we become adults.

The Bookshop

 by Penelope Fitzgerald

The year is 1959 and the kind-hearted widow Florence Green risks everything to open the only bookshop in the seaside town of Hardborough. What follows can only be described as the quaint, strange, and often sad happenings of a small, isolated community. The plot is not filled with grand parties, unlikely lovers, or a shocking penultimate event. But somehow, because the world of this story seems to fit in a snow globe, each small shake builds on the one before until those same every day situations are riddled with dramatic tension. I was truly amazed at how invested I was in the life of Florence's small bookshop.