Suzanne Redfearn delivers another gripping page-turner in her latest novel, a story about a young mother’s fight to protect her children from the dangerous world of Hollywood. Faye Martin never expected her husband to abandon her and her three children . . . or that she’d have to struggle every day to make ends meet. So when her four-year-old daughter is discovered through a YouTube video and offered a starring role on a television series, it seems like her prayers have been answered. But when the reality of their new life settles in, Faye realizes that fame and fortune don’t come without a price. And in a world where everyone is an actor and every move is scrutinized by millions, it’s impossible to know who to trust, and Faye finds herself utterly alone in her struggle to save her family. Emotionally riveting and insightful, No Ordinary Life is an unforgettable novel about the preciousness of childhood and the difficult choices a mother needs to make in order to protect this fragile time in her children’s lives.
Faye Martin is a single-mom to three children. Her husband walked out and hasn’t been seen for several months. She struggles to do what is right and provide for her family, but her back is against the wall when her son’s school calls in social services. After relocating to LA, her youngest daughter becomes a viral video sensation and Hollywood comes knocking and rocks her family’s world in No Ordinary Life by Suzanne Redfearn.
Faye became pregnant and a wife at age 19. Her husband, Sean, is a long-haul trucker that spent more time on the road than at home. Now that he’s gone, she has to work and juggle doing everything possible for her children. After her youngest, four-year-old Molly, becomes an internet sensation, is signed to appear in a national television advertisement and then to act in a nationally-syndicated television show, she thinks things will be easier. Unfortunately, Faye finds out that life is harder than ever before. She is caught between the Hollywood moneymaking machine and making the right choices for her young child. Just when she thinks things can’t get any worse, her estranged husband reappears with his hand out for a share of the money. A stroke of luck on the set one day means that she now has two children in show business, her youngest daughter and her eight-year-old son. Her time is spent dragging them to appearances, rehearsals, and filming, and her twelve-year-old daughter is getting lost in the shuffle. Now she is dealing with deranged fans, her greedy ex-husband, her increasingly wild tween daughter, and the production team for the television show. Can she stand up for her children without jeopardizing their careers? Can she make the right choices for everyone without hurting anyone?
I found No Ordinary Life to be a rather quick, enjoyable, and easy read. Although I found the scenarios interesting and fell in love with the precocious Molly and her endearing brother Tom, I didn’t really like Faye, Sean or almost any of the other characters. I felt for Faye and her situation, but it seemed as if she made bad decision after bad decision and never really learned from her mistakes. It was easy to understand that she had been pulled into an environment that was completely foreign to her, but rather than seeking assistance she just continued to struggle. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t feel that Faye is a bad mother, just a woman prone to making the wrong choices for the right reasons. Perhaps Faye is a little too flawed and realistic and the epitome of living a life with the notion that the “grass is always greener.” No Ordinary Life provides a fascinating glimpse, albeit fictionalized, into the life of a celebrity family. In this era of instant gratification, it isn’t possible to hide from adoring fans or the media when out in public and that can be daunting for adults, much less for children. Ms. Redfearn has crafted an engaging story that highlights the pitfalls of being a child celebrity and the hassles of being the family of a celebrity, as well as providing a bit of romance, a touch of greed, envy, petty jealousies, plenty of family drama, and more. If you enjoy reading about the behind-the-scenes life of being a celebrity, then No Ordinary Life is the perfect choice for you. Trust me, you’ll adore Molly and Tom, as well as all the drama in front of and behind the cameras.
Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this book for review purposes from the publisher via NetGalley. I was not paid, required, or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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