Before I get started with my review of Hollywood Under the Covers, I feel I must share with you a warning from author Brandie Knight herself. Partly because it’s funny and partly because it’s simply just true.
Author’s Warning: Do NOT read this novel if you are easily offended, related to the author, or under 18-years-old. By keeping the material as close to the truth as possible, the adult content is explicit and may be offensive to some people.
A powerful talent agent, the Mistress of Romance, an international superstar, a sexy movie star, and Hollywood’s biggest and best-kept secret breeds a scandalous world of betrayal.
Hollywood Under the Covers is a rare look inside the seductive entertainment industry. To the outside world, Hollywood is portrayed with glamour, riches and fame—but to insiders, it’s a cold, dark, scandalous place, where survival is not about basic instinct but the people you’re sleeping with. The book exposes the erotic side of four Hollywood moneymakers, openly revealing how nothing is safe in the hands of greed.
Hollywood Under the Covers is an intriguing world of sex, drugs, scandals, and the downside of fame. Loosely based on actual events, this fictional story takes the reader on a fast paced, head-spinning journey into a world so strange it could only be based in truth.
I have never – NEVER – read a book that started the way Hollywood Under the Covers starts. My jaw was literally hanging open by the time I got to the end of the first page. And it’s not even a full page of print, so what does that tell you?
I admit that I rarely finish a book in one sitting, but I did with this one! It instantly grabbed me by my ass and throat and didn’t let go. Much like the death-grip of Hollywood, actually.
I thoroughly enjoyed how Brandie Knight chose to lay out the sequence of events for the reader. She easily and smoothly switches back and forth between the present day and the past.
In the first few chapters we get the background stories of the main characters, but it’s done in a non-overwhelming or forceful way. Often times I feel like authors push the characters’ backgrounds on the reader, forcing it down our throats, then by the time we see that character again, we’ve forgotten all about who they are and where they came from.
But not in Brandie Knight’s Hollywood Under the Covers. You absorb the character backgrounds in an easy, continuous, and fluid way, without even realizing all the information you’ve gathered.
As you continue to read, you notice it’s quite easy to follow the story – even with it often switching back and forth between the past and present. Brandie is great about making it clear where you are in the story-line, and I think it’s GREAT how she tells individual stories from all points of view.
For example, there’s a moment in the book where one of the main characters has an interaction with an actor she finds quite appealing. First we read about what’s happening in her head during the flirting glances, and then we find out what was going through his head during that same exact moment.
It sounds like it might be a little weird, but Brandie Knight does an excellent job of it.
As I continued through the book, I found myself trying to guess who the characters were actually based on. Obviously it would be impossible to pinpoint exactly, but I did find myself saying things like, “Hmm, I wonder if he’s so-and-so, or a combo of this guy and that guy. And the women – especially the wives, the mistresses, and the orally-desperate actresses – WHO are they in real life?
The closest I got to figuring out who a character actually is in real life was deciding that the ruthless talent agent Jake Slader is a grown version of Steff from Pretty in Pink – and yes, I realize Steff is a fictional character, but I dare you to read Hollywood Under the Covers and tell me Jake Slader and Steff are not the same person.
The graphic sexual talk and content in Hollywood Under the Covers did not upset me one bit. After all, the story wouldn’t be true to itself as a Hollywood novel without blatant drug use and graphic sex, but it did make me think that perhaps I should reconsider the whole “running off to Hollywood” thing. Seriously. Shit’s crazy in that world!
Warning: The following excerpt contains language that some people may find offensive. You’ve been warned. If you want to complain about the graphic language, that’s fine; just don’t complain to me – or Brandie Knight. The Hilary has spoken.
(A flashback scene)
1995 CANNES FILM FESTIVAL
After the opening night ceremonies, there was a big bash on some movie producer’s yacht. At thirty-nine, Jake Slader was living like a king on a prestigious yacht, sailing into the darkness of the Mediterranean Sea. Jake worked his way through the crowd of industry whores when he spotted Uncle Luke Lexington, standing in a group of people.
As Jake made his way closer, he recognized actress Liz Holiday–his talent agency’s client and the reason he was in France. He was there to oversee her movie screening and promotion. A couple of years ago, Luke had set Jake up in business. He arranged for Jake to open a talent agency to feed him his clients. Luke managed the top Hollywood moneymakers and had control over their agency representation.
Luke was double dipping with the client’s percentages but only Jake knew about that. Jake was not complaining, because he was on his way to becoming a multi-millionaire himself.
The bottom line was a shit load of money for both of them.
“Come over here, Jake,” Luke said, motioning to him. “I want you to meet Antonio Durso, the director and producer of Suspicious Hearts.”
Jake reached out and shook his hand. “We’ve talked on the phone. Nice yacht,” he said, distracted by the stunning young cunt on the man’s right arm. Her heart shaped lips were made to wrap around his manhood. He felt his torpedo starting to salute.
“Thank you,” Antonio nodded.
Jake snapped out of his sexual trance and remembered his whereabouts.
“Liz,” he said, opening his arms for a hug. “You look stunning, as always.”
“You’re always a charmer. This is my niece, Lacy Fox,” Liz introduced with a strange tone in her voice.
He turned toward the sexy young temptress, who had to be in her late teens. She had tan skin that glowed, with long dark hair, erotic facial features, and a body straight out of Playboy. She was a splitting image of Liz in her young days.
“You’re baby Lacy?” Jake asked amused, remembering how he helped deliver her. “Hot damn, you’re not a baby anymore.”
“Shut up,” Luke demanded, throwing an evil eye at him. He was staring Hollywood’s biggest kept secret in the face. He felt a rush of power over her.
“So, you’re her aunt,” Jake pointed at Liz. “This is too much,” he said, busting into laughter, “a-ha-ha-ha. Oh, the secrets. A-ha-ha-ha.”
“Go take your medicine,” Luke said sternly, giving Jake a shove away from the situation. “I will deal with you later.”
“Ignore him,” Mr. Lexington said, red faced, glaring at Liz. “His doctor recently changed his prescription.”
Aunt Liz’s agent had to be on some kind of drugs, Lacy thought as she watched him continue to laugh, stumbling into people.
Lacy turned to Liz, who was holding her chest and trying to catch her breath. “Aunt Liz,” Lacy hollered, rushing to her side. “Antonio, do something,” she said in a panic.
Antonio was already in the midst of catching Liz as she started to collapse.
He scooped her up and carried her to a guest room. “Call Doctor Cooper,” he instructed one of his bodyguards. “Tell him the helicopter will pick him up in ten minutes.”
“Oh heavens no, I’m fine. I don’t need a doctor.”
Lacy gave Antonio a look of concern.
“I’m fine,” Liz said, smiling. “It was simply an anxiety attack. I’m not use to being around so many people,” she said, as her eyes darted downward and to the side.
Lacy knew Aunt Liz well enough to know that she was lying. What was she hiding? Lacy’s mind raced back to what was going on before her aunt’s panic attack. Who was there? What was said?
The sleazy agent had to be the answer.
Lacy kissed Liz on the cheek and turned to Antonio. “I’ll be right back. Stay with her.” She stormed out of the room before he had a chance to ask any questions.
DUN! DUN! DUN!
Thank you Brandie Knight for writing such a kick-ass novel.
And thank you so much for your answers to questions left on Enter To Win Brandie Knight’s ‘Hollywood Under The Covers’! and A Few Questions For Author Brandie Knight. And Her Answers. They’re really informational and juicy!
Brandie Knight – I think you’re my new hero. I would love to continue to support you and your business in any way that I can.
And in case I haven’t already made it clear…..I LOVE HOLLYWOOD UNDER THE COVERS!!
After twenty years in the entertainment industry, Brandie Knight is writing about her encounters in a fictional environment in Hollywood Under the Covers. Over the years, Knight has created and produced a television pilot, two radio shows, and an entertainment magazine. She is the co-producer of the award-winning documentary a/k/a Tommy Chong, and a former entertainment publicist. Knight splits her time between Las Vegas, NV, Taos, NM, and her hometown of Ponca City, OK. Visit her sites at www.brandieknight.com, www.facebook.com/brandie.knight, and http://twitter.com/brandieknight1