Landon Brinkley’s dreams are all coming true. She’s landed an internship with the fabulous Selah Smith, event planner for the Hollywood elite, taking her from small-town Texas to the bright lights of LA. Landon soon finds herself in a world in which spending a million dollars on an event—even a child’s birthday party—is de rigueur and the whims of celebrity clients are life-and-death matters. At first, the thrill of working on A-list parties and celebrity weddings is enough to get Landon through the seventy-five-hour workweeks and endless abuse at the hands of her mercurial boss. But when the reality of the business reveals itself, she’s forced to make a choice: do whatever it takes to get ahead, or stay true to herself.
Drawing on the author’s real-life experiences as an event planner to the stars, Party Girl takes readers on an adventure among Hollywood’s most beautiful—and most outrageous—people, revealing the ugly side of Hollywood’s prettiest parties.
Party Girl is the debut novel by Rachel Hollis. I’d never come across Rachel before so I went and had a nose at the lifestyle website that she originally founded (www.thechicsite.com) to find out more about her and her debut novel. As soon as I discovered that Rachel also founded her own LA-based event planning firm and has drawn on some of her own experiences for Party Girl I knew it would be a thrilling, juicy read, and it certainly was that…and much more!
In Party Girl we meet Landon Brinkley, a girl from Texas who is seemingly living the dream when she moves to LA to work as an intern for the one and only Selah Smith at SSE. It’s the biggest and the best events organising company and Landon has dreamed about doing this job all of her life, yet she soon discovers that life working on A-List Parties and for celebrity weddings isn’t all it’s cracked up to be as she embarks on working 75 plus hour weeks and works herself flat out catering to Selah’s every whim. After sacrificing her life, relationships and friendships for her career at SSE Landon starts to question if she really has what it takes to get ahead in this line of work.
I found myself getting quickly absorbed into Party Girl. I loved Landon right from the start (who objects to having to wear all black to work and loves her false lashes).
Before we go any further I must apologise if I refer to Landon as Brinkley at any time throughout this review. One of the laws at SSE is that everyone (besides Selah of course…) is referred to by their surname and I’ve got used to referring to Landon as Brinkley… or even her loveable nickname ‘Brinks’.
But anyway, Landon, Brinkley…Brinks, is such a likeable character that you can’t help but root for her. She is so desperate to succeed at doing what she dreams of and I love her can-do attitude.
Throughout Party Girl I found myself making several comparisons to The Devil Wears Prada (which is one of my all time favourite books). The unreasonableness and downright nastiness of Selah reminded me so much of Miranda Priestly, and of course this means that she makes for a fabulous character to read about (and to hate!) I loved seeing how Landon adapted and worked her backside off to establish herself with SSE and the friends that she makes along the way are brilliant additions to the story, especially Miko. I was touched by how she took Landon under her wing and also relieved that Landon had found herself an ally.
I also found this novel to show a fascinating side to the party planning industry. I must admit that before reading Party Girl I had a view that this was a glamorous role – who wouldn’t want to plan A-List parties where thousands of dollars are lavishly being spent? However, after everything that Landon goes through my view definitely changed but I must admit that it’s still a fascinating career to read about and makes a brilliant subject matter for a novel.
I would have liked to have heard more about exactly what happened to Selah at the end of the novel and to see how she dealt with the repercussions of her doings. Apart from that I was really pleased with how things turned out towards the end, especially where Brody and Landon were concerned.
Party Girl had me gripped throughout; it’s a fast paced, exciting story with romance, laughs and a genuinely loveable lead character. I found Rachel Hollis’ writing a joy to read, she has a really familiar writing style and I’m eagerly anticipating her next novel!
Party Girl is an uplifting, absorbing read. If you’re looking for an all round fun, exciting novel for the up-and-coming party season then look no further!
A huge thank you to Chic Publishing. ♥
Rachel Hollis is the founder of the popular lifestyle site http://www.thechicsite.com and the Los Angeles–based event planning firm Chic Events. At twenty-seven, she was named by Inc. Magazine as one of its “Top 30 Entrepreneurs under 30.” She has designed and produced parties for many Hollywood stars, including Bradley Cooper, Al Gore, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Ivanka Trump, Rashida Jones, Marcia Cross, Jamie King, and Cuba Gooding Jr., among others. Rachel is a lifestyle expert for The Talk, Extra, The Nate Berkus Show, and The Steve Harvey Show and has been featured in People, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, OK!, Entertainment Weekly, Better Homes and Gardens, and Traditional Home. Rachel lives in Los Angeles with her husband and three children.