Talk of the Town

Lisa Wingate, Author . Bethany House $13.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-7642-9156-2

When Hollywood producer Mandalay Florentino comes to the tiny hamlet of Daily, Tex., she's not at all sure what she will find. She's trying to do damage control because Amber Anderson, a good-girl gospel singer from Daily who is a contestant on Mandalay's American Idol –like reality show, keeps getting herself caught in the tabloids. Mandalay's also trying to keep a lid on the fact that Amber's about to become a finalist, but in a one-stoplight town like Daily, the mere presence of folks from Tinseltown tips off the whole community. Making matters even more complicated, as Mandalay holds off paparazzi, sniffs out the underhanded doings of her conniving boss and begins to suspect her L.A. fiancé of philandering, she loses her heart to a blue-eyed country boy who's got a secret of his own. Wingate (Tending Roses ) pens a light and entertaining story of life in a small town with Texas-sized charm. The narration alternates competently between Mandalay and her new ally, Imagene, a widow who discovers new life even as her 70th birthday looms. The novel's Christian themes are incorporated quietly, as characters grow in grace without melodramatic conversions or bedside confessions. Fans of Anne Dayton and May Vanderbilt's brand of engaging, contemporary chick lit will enjoy this story. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 11/05/2007
Release date: 00/00/0000
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