LAST NIGHT AT
BY LAUREN WEISBERGER
Brooke loved reading the dishy celebrity gossip rag Last Night. That is, until her marriage became a weekly headline.
Brooke was drawn to the soulful, enigmatic Julian Alter the very first time she heard him perform "Hallelujah" at a dark East Village dive bar.
Now five years married, Brooke balances two jobs—as a nutritionist at NYU Hospital and as a consultant to an Upper East Side girls' school, where privilege gone wrong and disordered eating run rampant—in order to help support her husband's dream of making it in the music world.
Things are looking up when after years of playing Manhattan clubs and toiling as an A&R intern, Julian finally gets signed by Sony. Although no one's promising that the album will ever hit the airwaves, Julian is still dedicated to logging in long hours at the recording studio. All that changes after Julian is asked to perform on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno—and is catapulted to stardom, literally overnight. Amazing opportunities begin popping up almost daily—a new designer wardrobe, a tour with Maroon 5, even a Grammy performance.At first the newfound fame is fun—who wouldn't want to stay at the Chateau Marmont or visit the set of one of television's hottest shows? Yet it seems that Brooke's sweet husband—the man who can't handle hot showers and wears socks to bed—is increasingly absent, even on those rare nights they're home together. When rumors about Brooke and Julian swirl in the tabloid magazines, she begins to question the truth of her marriage and is forced to finally come to terms with what she thinks she wants—and what she actually needs.
Lauren Weisberger is the author of The Devil Wears Prada, which spent more than a year on the New York Times hardcover and paperback bestseller lists. The film version, starring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway, won a Golden Globe Award and grossed over $300 million worldwide. Her second novel, Everyone Worth Knowing, was also a New York Times bestseller. She lives in New York City with her husband.
LAST NIGHT AT CHATEAU MARMONT, from best selling author of THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA, Lauren Weisberger, is almost a typical “Star is Born” kind of story. ‘Almost’, because as Weisberger’s many fans know, she is never one to settle for the typical story or ending, and that is why we love to read her work. LAST NIGHT AT CHATEAU MARMONT is built around the way that becoming a celebrity can effect someone but also, how it can change the lives of everyone around them.
Brooke is a nutritionist with a successful career, working in New York when she meets Julian Alter, a singer/songwriter trying to make it big in his music career. They almost immediately are attracted to each other and marry soon after. For the first five years, they share their married bliss and become great parents. Brooke works two jobs to support the family so Julian can pursue his musical dream. As if it happened overnight, Julian scores a hit and becomes a rock star instantaneously! As they find themselves in Los Angeles with Julian performing on Jay Leno‘s “The Tonight Show”, their lives are suddenly turned upside down. With this new incredibly glitzy lifestyle, Brooke finds herself quickly left out of the picture and as Julian attracts more aggressive female fans and socializes and works with the hottest young actresses, the paparazzi eat it up. Spending more time away from home than with Brooke and his family, puts an obvious strain on their marriage. The straw for this camel comes, as the headlines read, when Julian is reportedly found “with” another woman bringing Brooke to the point where she must decide if this is the life she really wants or not.
With Weisberger giving such depth to both Brooke and Julian from the start, before all the Hollywood hullabaloo, readers become invested in both their lives, knowing them as "real" people and not stereotypes. Emotionally you can understand the position and feelings of both characters as their lives change over time. Their personal struggles and the precariousness of their marriage all lead to an incredible conclusion. Knowing Brooke so well, leads you to wonder what you would do and how you feel about what really happens. How do you feel about the title LAST NIGHT AT CHATEAU MARMONT and what does it signify? How would you handle things if you were in Julian’s shoes? You will find yourself turning the pages to see if Brooke and Julian do what you think they should do or not. I thoroughly enjoyed Lauren Weisberger’s new book and luxuriated in a well written story with great characters and story lines in what could have been just another Hollywood chick-lit run of the mill story.
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