[Ebook] ➨ Slipping on Stardust By Gordon Osmond – Horse-zine.co.uk

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10 thoughts on “Slipping on Stardust

  1. says:

    A few books just defy description in some ways when you go to put your thoughts down in a review. This is one of those for me. I was tracking along with the story nicely, then it took a twist and finished with another twist (okay more twists than that, but it was three that tossed me off the track I was on) leaving me feeling somewhat off kilter. When I say this, I am not meaning to say this like it was a bad thing. It's more of an attempt to describe what it felt like to read this book. I don't think this book even fits into one genre or sub-genre description. I'll call it a dark romantic comedy suspense.

    The story focuses on characters who come together when a small town in Ohio puts on a play. The story starts slow and builds with an introduction to an array of characters and their expectation on the play being in town. There is the introduction of the 'down at the heels' Hollywood actor who reluctantly takes the leading role because it’s all his agent can get him. Adrian will be staying in the home of the premier family in Johnson which includes his leading lady, Eileen, her son, Kyle playing a bit role and the longsuffering husband and father, Dan Brockway, who practices law in his own firm and tries to support the artistic temperaments living under his roof with patience and understanding. Add to this the best friend law partner, Raul, who has family problem, the son's girlfriend Erin who adds a much needed dose of normal, the town police character, and a few other assorted colorful characters. All sorts of intrigue is got up to by all the characters while the play is going on and gets even more exciting once the play is over and stuff starts coming out- affairs, office intrigue, kidnapping and finally the dispersal of all the players. This dispersal doesn't end things, but adds to the drama until it winds down to the epilogue.

    The plot of this one is difficult for summarizing because of how much was going on, but the basic overarching theme is simple as it explores what happens when a small town is stirred up in ways they couldn't foresee by the arrival of a B-Movie actor to work a local play. The story shifts perspectives with many main characters' viewpoints which were a bit out of the ordinary for me because I'm used to a few viewpoints at the most. I found that this worked just fine and the breaks helped determine there was a change. Later in the story, I did experience confusion when Dan had those moments when his imagination got the best of him and he had these daydream moments. I had trouble distinguishing between what he imagined and what really happened. I eventually figured it out.

    Now as to the tone of the story, it runs the gamut between almost slap-stick funny to darkly funny to eliciting feelings of anger, sadness and pity. This was one where not one player comes out wearing a pristine 'white' hat though some wear whiter hats than others. They are flawed people that make mistakes and some of the mistakes have far reaching consequences.

    I was so impressed with how the author wrote so many characters as leads and wrote them well. I found myself attracted or repelled, but never indifferent to them.
    My favorite character was Dan Brockway and that was from early on. He's this really down to earth guy with a great wit. He doesn't toot his own horn though he could have because he is a success and well thought of by everyone, but his own family. He's like a rock that gets battered in the emotional storms his wife, son, the actor in his home and the crook of a lawyer working at his firm whirl around him. I almost stood and applauded when he finally had enough and spoke his piece.
    I felt sorry for his friend, Raul particularly when his son's boyfriend was being such a jerk about things. I do get that Raul didn't react well to finding out his son was gay or that he already had a partner, but good lord, the kid sprung it on the family in a way that he had to know would be the most brutal shock. Instead of easing his parents into the idea, he pushed them off a cliff. Now maybe I missed some nuances in the story, but even with Raul's rejection that son and his boyfriend weren't exactly reaching out with understanding either. Yes, I was a bit angry at some characters in those scenes.
    Kyle was an interesting guy because he's self-absorbed through most of the story, but then toward the end there is a glimmer of hope that he's really starting to understand things. Maybe there's hope for him yet.

    I have to say that I found all the references to classic movies and plays a treat.

    As to whom I would recommend this too? I would say it’s for the person who can appreciate dark comedy that's light on suspense with several perspectives presented.

  2. says:

    Small town antics, regional theatre, fame, lawyers, intrigue, scandal, and adolescent rebellion form the backdrop for Gordon Osmond's debut novel.

    Read full review in the 2013 July/August double issue of InD’tale Magazine.

  3. says:

    Let me start off by saying, there were so many characters that I hated with a passion, except for Erin O'Malley and Danton Brockway. I know hate is a strong word, but I seriously hated the other charcters with a passion. Let me tell you why. Eileen Brockway is a selfish, disrespectful, catty, haughty, vain, spiteful, albeit beautiful shrew. She's the stereotypical small town girl who dreamed of being the envy of every girl in town. She's married to the greatest guy in the world, Danton, but she's still not satisfied. Throughout the book, it felt to me that her marriage to Danton was more of an accomplishment than a relationship based on love and mutual respect. He's a good-looking guy with smarts. She dreamed of making it onto the big screen and had a master plan to achieve it all, but they were thwarted by her husband, unknowingly. Her reputation as the town's top drama queen and picture perfect family makes her the envy of town, but behind closed doors, she's an unhappy wannabe star with dreams of making it big with illusions of grandeur. She's also a schemer and looks down on the other actors like she's better than them. If she was, she would have gotten her big break years ago. >:( Thankfully, she does get her comeuppance at the end of the book.

    The other female character was Inez, wife to Raul Fioravanti, attractive Italian partner in Dan's law firm. Following the death of their son, his wife became rigid, bitter, and unbearable. She had a few lines and scenes and by the end of each, I was even more disgusted by her than before. Granted, she did lose her son, but she and her husband did shun their son, David, for being gay and introducing them to Jason, his partner. To be fair, David did not gradually ease his parents into the idea of him being gay. Plenty of drama occurs in this plot line and I'm glad Raul found an appropriate happily ever after. I'm as feminist as the next blogger, but for the love of God! These women were so unhappy with their own lives that they cause misery to everyone around them.

    Another character that I found completely unlikable was Adrian Conway, the so called famous Hollywood actor. To be totally honest, the man's out of his prime and suffers from the illusions that he still has an acting career. He's old news and yet he's still trying to rekindle some bit of fame. His presence in Johnson and the Brockway household stirs up scandal and drama. The fact that he had no problem having an affair with someone else's wife, coupled with his alcholism, just made not like him. Were he a real person, I would not be found within 100 feet of him,

    The only characters I did like were Danton Brockway and Erin O'Malley. Dan has the patience of a saint and the smarts of a master manipulator. His reaction to his wife's extra-martial activities was too calm. I think it's the lawyer in him that wants to give his wife the benefit of the doubt. Despite his troubles at his firm about falsified documents with a case of he said-he said with his son's supposed kidnapping, I thought Dan was an awesome person with a will of steel. Erin started off dating Dan's son Kyle, another character I don't really like. She's a smart cookie! She doesn't even have to try to get men's attention; she just naturally projects a aura of intelligence and sincerity. I like her outspokenness and candor about the reality of her relationship with Kyle and the insight she provides to Dan about his son. I must say that both Dan and Erin had surprising HEAs. For one thing I felt blindsided by it and how it was an additional "twist" in the plotline. I absolutely did not see it coming.

    The characters were immensely flawed, but that only made them more real. It was like reading a script from a telenovela. The fact that I hated most of the characters was not due to horrible writing, but to fantastic writing! They were flawed in such a way that made them real to me. All of the scandals and drama helped piece everything together perfectly. Throughout the book there were mentions of racial slurs and prejuduices from the villains of the book brought to light the ignorance that many people have when it comes to LGTB people. The language and wordplay was great. Overall this book was a great read and I hope more people will read this book. It's certainly worth reading.

  4. says:

    “Slipping on Stardust” by Gordon Osmond is a story about a small town in Ohio. A once-famous B-movie actor gets a job starring in the local production of “Little Sheba”, cast alongside the town’s self-proclaimed diva. She is a woman who has always longed to get out of this small town and find her own glory on the big screen, but her ambition is trapped by her marriage to the local lawyer, who is successful enough to pay for her high maintenance life style. Their son and his friends, and the husband’s law partners fill out the cast.
    When I accepted a Kindle version for review purposes, I was told that it was a two-flame romance. It’s not. Romance is a story about two people who have to overcome a problem in order to fall in love. This story has a large cast of characters, all of whom are either married or dating someone already. I’m not sure what genre the book falls into. If it was a television show, it would be a British soap opera. The term “contemporary Shakespere” comes the closest to defining its tragic nature. It’s not a story about love so much as failure, broken dreams and bad marriages. It highlights several types of stereotyping going on in our culture today; towards gays, blondes, and straight men who prefer typically female activities like dance and cooking, but without offering any solution to those situations.
    Two flames is also the wrong category for this work. It contains some clean sex scenes, a little bit of foul language, and a pro-gay platform, but it doesn’t even start to simmer due to a lack of engagement.
    Engagement is when the reader feels drawn into the story. Since the entire story is about acting, perhaps the best way to explain this is to compare this book to a television show. “Murder She Wrote” and “NCIS” are engaging because it is filmed on a street or in an actual house. It makes you feel like you’re standing next to the characters listening to what they say. It’s believable because the actors walk and wave their hands in a natural way. The writing style of this book is more like the British murder mysteries that are aired on PBS. They are filmed on a very small set, where the actors deliver their lines and tell the viewer what happened. It also reminds me of “Hot in Cleveland”, another show that is filmed on a set, is acted instead of portrayed, and features a large cast of people who are not typical Buckeyes.
    The author has experience writing screen plays, and it shows in his writing style. The book makes you feel like you’re watching a local production of an off-off-Broadway play. It makes reference to a lot of classic movies such as “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?” and “Streetcar Named Desire.” A movie buff, or a local theater buff might enjoy the book for that reason.
    The main rule of engagement is “show, don’t tell.” Telling is a fault in most stories when the author lapses into it from time to time. This author, however, tells the story with such consistency that it seems to be a style of its own. It left me feeling like I’d set down to tea with Prince Charles, while he told me about what happened at a party I wasn’t invited to. (to the point where I was surprised to find out that Gordon Osmond is an American.) Other than that, it was well-paced, adequately foreshadowed, and interesting.

  5. says:

    This was more of an anti-romantic suspense novel, with so many characters that are less than desirable, and only a few moments of HEA to characters that deserve and appreciate love and devotion. Gordon Osmond has created a wonderfully twisted story, with characters that evoke deeply emotional responses: usually dislike. More than once I had to quell the urge to slap a character about the head and shoulders, hoping that they would smarten up, or get punished for their horrible behavior.

    It is a particular talent to create characters that are not only flawed, but completely unaware of their own bad behaviors and still you need to read to find out what happens. Mixed among the characters that have a litany of traits that should have banished them to the naughty step: there are some gems. And seeing just where they go, and how their stories play out make this a page turner that you won’t want to put down.

    My favorites were Danton and Emily. Danton is incredibly patient and able to see beyond the manipulations of his wife to keep his own goals in mind. Far from perfect, his steadiness in the face of all of the dramatics and drama queens, male and female, is admirable. Emily is solid and strong: not needing to tell you how wonderful she is, her goodness and loyalty, her candor that is used to improve situations and her overall intelligence make her likeable, even when she is in the middle of some untenable situations.

    The presentation of stars that never were, stars that were fading, and the attitudes and self-absorption of most of the characters was incredibly well written and life-like: in fact I could place actual people into many of the roles with ease. Osmond has a real skill for showing the gritty reality of a series of broken people, and keeping you intrigued and interested until the end. And, with the multitude of twists, including three major twists that changed the direction of the story more than once, the need to know who, where and how are puzzles that rival a Gordian Knot, and just as satisfying.

    I received an eBook from the publisher for purpose of honest review for the Jeep Diva. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

  6. says:

    Eileen Brockway is unhappy in her small town life. She is a beautiful and successful actress at the local theater, but she dreams of making it big someday. She would do practically anything to become a Hollywood starlet. When B-list movie star, Adrian Conway, comes to town to costar with her, she knows he will see how great she is and take her back to California with him. Having the star stay there is exciting, and she begins planning ways to ensure her dreams become a reality. Danton Brockway is a well-liked local lawyer for Johnson, Ohio. He is very smart and witty but is underappreciated by his wife and son, who treat him as their lackey. He does not mind. He knows that his family is creative and special. When Adrian comes to stay with them, everything gets a bit hectic and strained. Danton is clever enough to figure out some secrets and how best to deal with them. When Hollywood shows up in Johnson, it shakes up everyone’s way of life. Excitement runs rampant when the small-town rubs elbows with a “somebody”. In the Brockway household, things are even more chaotic. Eileen and Kyle Brockway believe Adrian is the key to becoming famous. Dan becomes obsolete at best. Within a short time, secrets unfold, and some people show their true colors. Mr. Osmond does a fine job creating intensely flawed and realistic characters. There are many persons within this story that I truly dislike, not because they are written badly. Quite the opposite, they are written very well, to the point where you feel something for each character. Out of the main characters, my favorite by far is Dan. He is a very clever and level-headed man who eventually gets the opportunity to stand up for himself. The plot is rich and has many fun twists in the most unexpected places. Up to the very end, the reader is taken on a psychological ride through the human condition. HCHarju Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More - See more at: http://www.coffeetimeromance.com/Book...

  7. says:

    Funny that in a small town even a B-lister like Adrian is a somebody and that is all that it takes to see people that you thought you knew become someone entirely different. Dan Brockway has no idea the problems that he is about to encounter with his wife and son when he agrees to let Adrian stay underneath his roof.

    Gordon Osmond has created some great characters, you know a character is good when you find yourself hating on them as if they were real people. Yeah, I am chuckling as I write this, because I had not meant to mention that fact. It is sort of like yelling at the broad in the scary movie for going in the basement. Well if you are anything like me you will enjoy getting to love and hate on these characters. Thanks Gordon you just expounded on something most of us already know and that is that people in a small town are just as screwed up as those in big cities maybe even more so.

  8. says:

    I thought the story and plot were both pretty good. What was not appealing and took a star off was the language. There were far too many phrases that were at a graduate school level. I actually looked something up because I was stumped. Other than that the characters had real life qualities that weren't predictable. All in all a pretty good read.

  9. says:

    Interesting book; I should have read the description before diving in, since I kept expecting something to happen which wasn't. Still, this held my attention, and was very well written.

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