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The Difference Between You and Me: A Novel…

The Difference Between You and Me: A Novel

by Kathleen De Marco

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This book was really wonderful. I started off disliking the main characters, but by the end I was rooting for both of them. The look inside Hollywood was a lot of fun, too. ( )
  superblondgirl | Jul 23, 2007 |
Hollywood strivers. Josie O'Leary wants to be a producer and nothing's going to stop her. She's got a law degree, a few connections, and some insider advice: buy a great script by an unknown, attach yourself to a star, and work hard. But this triple play isn't so easy, what with the competition from all those other people determined to make it in what's invariably referred to as "the business" in "this town." Josie just isn't grabbing any glory as the underling of an old-style producer's snotty niece. Maybe she could get somewhere if she wangled a job at NJTF-New Jersey Thoroughbred Films-owned by former horse trainer turned megastar Henry Antonelli. NJTF is run mostly by his interesting wife, Esther Rabinowitz, a dressed-down genius in jeans and T-shirt who offers only $45,000 a year, take it or leave it, when Josie wants $100,000. She takes it, and desperately touts the only script she can glom onto, a quirky project called The Bear Who Saved Christmas, written by a promising unknown. It could be greenlighted if Henry plays the lead (his last sleeper turned out to be a critical and commercial hit)-and what if Renee Zellweger were interested-or even J. Lo? Segue to Carla, a 40ish Manhattanite fleeing a falling ceiling and semipermanent unemployment to exploit the kindness of a rich cousin. Carla, a former book reviewer afflicted with a profound baby-needs-a-nap irritability, talks a blue streak and lands a job reading scripts, which she's able to sum up in a New York minute. The thin plot suddenly thickens: She just so happens to be Henry Antonelli's illegitimate daughter. Touched by stardust, Carla gets a job at NJTF, where she secretly rewrites The Bear. Josie and Carla square off assparks fly and heads roll. A cast of thousands, chaotic structure, and movie-biz clichés-in a second outing from film producer DeMarco
added by daddyofattyo | editKirkus Reviews
The collision of two well-educated, self-absorbed women, who are unlikable in vastly different ways, makes for fun summer reading. First in the ring and hailing from New York City is the intelligent, dumpy, and self-pitying Carla Trousse. With multiple literary degrees and excess poundage under her belt, she cannot manage to make a decent living or a romantic connection. Out of work and off balance, she doesn't succumb to her family's invitation to move in with them in California until her apartment roof collapses. In the other corner, from Los Angeles, is the beautiful, pushy ex-lawyer Josephine O'Leary, who has her sights set on being a film producer. A master of status symbols and one-upmanship, Josie lands a job at a production company and comes upon a promising script that grabs the attention of a big-name actor with a secret relationship to Carla. By the time it surfaces to topple the balance of power, Josie is ripe, and the reader is ready for her comeuppance. This minor knock-out of a novel from the author of The Cranberry Queen is recommended for public libraries.-Sheila Riley, Smithsonian Inst. Libs., Washington, DC Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
added by daddyofattyo | editLibrary Journal
Two very different women set out for Hollywood in film producer DeMarco's second novel (after Cranberry Queen), a humorous take on the image-obsessed world of moviemaking and moneymaking. Ruthless Josie O'Leary wants to be a movie producer and will do anything to get ahead-including dumping her husband when he is diagnosed with testicular cancer. A publicist acquaintance gives her crucial advice: "Glom. As in `I glom, you glom, everyone gloms.' Find talent-an actor, a writer, if you're lucky, a director-and weld yourself to their hip." Eagerly taking her at her word, Josie gloms onto writer Joshua King, author of a promising script called The Bear Who Saved Christmas. Meanwhile, in New York, Carla Trousse, an unemployed writer with an unfinished dissertation, decides she is fed up with the East Coast. Her aunt Paulette, who lives in Southern California, tells her she has "something" she needs to discuss with Carla and suggests she move out west. When she does, she is swept up in a whirlwind of Tinseltown intrigue, finally colliding with Josie in the office of Henry Antonelli, a Clint Eastwoodesque veteran movie star with his own production company. The revelation that Carla is Henry's illegitimate daughter fuels the tangled developments that follow. Carla's haplessness and honesty make her a nice foil for Josie, with her pitbull-like tenacity and ruthless duplicity, but the novel's plotting spins out of control with the haphazard introduction of secondary characters and subplots. Structural weaknesses aside, this is an enjoyable read and a pleasantly lightweight spoof of Hollywood behavior.
added by daddyofattyo | editPublishers Weekly
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Josie O'Leary, twenty-eight years old, beautiful and Pilates-toned, intends to assume her rightful place in the Hollywood pantheon, as president of a major movie studio. She plots her ascent with a commando's ruthlessness, and nothing—not an inconvenient husband, her bitchy boss, or even her complete ignorance of how movies are actually made—will stop her. When Josie stumbles across a can't-miss screenplay she recognizes it as her big chance to became a producer. Not a working-with-writers producer, or a dealing-with-boring-details producer, but an above-the-credits, seven-figure-fee producer. Someone who makes heads turn at the Ivy, who can get a call through to anyone instantly, who reads about her own life in Variety and Vanity Fair.
Neurotic New Yorker Carla Trousse moves to L.A. after everything in her life (including her living room ceiling) collapses around her. Overeducated and underemployed, Carla has no idea what to do next; she suspects she has only one real talent, for criticizing. Fortunately, that gift comes in handy at her new job as a script reader, or development girl. She's the oldest "D-girl" in her office at the absolute bottom of the movie-industry food chain, yet for the first time in years, she feels a glimmer of optimism.

When Josie's script attracts the attention of Henry Antonelli, a legendary leading man and Hollywood powerhouse, a startling revelation results in an uneasy alliance between Josie and Carla. Mutual loathing turns to grudging respect, then real friendship, as the two women discover the limits of ambition and the boundless rewards of human connection.

The Difference Between You and Me is a modern-day comedy of manners, an insider's take on Hollywood protocol and prestige. With her sly yet generous wit, DeMarco illuminates everyday annoyances and disasters that every woman will recognize—office-backstabbing, why-won't-he-call frustrations, and the unsettling vacuum that can open up in the middle of the busiest life.
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A modern-day comedy of manners, an insider's take on Hollywood protocol and prestige.

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