Saturday, June 1, 2013

Book Review: Plotting to Win by Tara Chevrestt

Dancers have a show. Bachelors have a show. Singers have a show.
Now authors do too. It’s called The Next Bestseller.
In NYC, seven authors compete for a hundred grand, a publishing contract with Bright House, and the title of the next bestseller. One is Felicity James. One is Victor Guzman.
Despite their attraction for each other, only one can win.
Drama, plagiarism, and trash talk ensue as all seven contestants compete against each other in challenges ranging from writing queries to working with editors. One-by-one, they’re eliminated.
Meanwhile, Victor and Felicity start a showmance that could cost them.
Though only one can walk away with the title, they can both get a chance at love…if they open themselves up to it.

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Tara Chevrestt is a deaf woman, former aviation mechanic, dog mom, writer, and editor. You’ll never see her without her Kindle or a book within reach. As a child, she would often take a flashlight under the covers to finish the recent Nancy Drew novel when she was supposed to be sleeping.
Tara is addicted to Law & Order: SVU, has a crush on Cary Grant, laughs at her own jokes, and is constantly modifying recipes and experimenting in the kitchen. Her theme is Strong is Sexy. She writes about strong women facing obstacles—in the military, with their handicaps, or just learning to accept themselves. Her heroines can stand alone and take care of themselves, but they often find love in the process.
Mark Plotting to Win to read on Goodreads

My Thoughts

It's not easy to give contemporary romance a fresh voice, but Tara Chevrestt has managed to do just that with her new novel, Plotting to Win. The story centers around the two main characters, Felicity and Victor, who are vying against a group of other would-be authors in a TV reality show for the title of "The Next Best Seller" and the $100,000 grand prize. The contestants have to go through challenges they never expected, like creating cover art and marketing, and learn there is a lot more to writing than just the final manuscript.  As an author myself, I could completely relate to the frustrations they faced. For those who aren't writers, this book will open your eyes to just how much behind the scenes work goes into the books you love. 

The characters in Plotting to Win are all creative and colorful. Felicity and Victor take center stage. Both of them need to win the writing contact and prize money for very different reasons that they keep mostly to themselves. Victor at first might come off at as a little arrogant, but you soon learn there's a much softer side to this play boy. When you learn his secret its easy to fall in love with him. Felicity is the type of strong and determined heroine I love to see in novels. She might be crushing on Victor a little, but she doesn't let that distract her from her goals.

The side characters in this story are just as much fun as the headliners. Tiffani, the porn writing vixen, Ophelia the talk show host and judge, Carmen the man-hating feminist, and so many more add tons of action and lots of tension both on and off the the set. I was on the edge of the seat the whole time I was reading this book, waiting to see who would emerge the champion of  each challenge. Plotting to Win combines the thrill of reality television with superb writing skills and character development that make this book impossible to put down. I wouldn't be surprised if it wound up, "The Next Best Seller" very soon.


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