'Starlette' Review: Hollywood Apocalypse By Way of Wit and Gorgeous Prose

Tune in for the next installment of Kyle Andrews’ Starlette – a satirical, dystopian thriller that pulls the red carpet out from under Hollywood’s stylish stilettos.

Hollywood. The glitz and glamour of movie stars, shining down upon the world from giant two-dimensional thrones. Projections of majesty. Icons. Myths. For years, they told us how to dress; how to speak; how to feel; how to think… And in one night, they were gone…

Andrews has woven together such an original mixture of satire, suspense, and drama it is hard to compare it to other novels. With subtle wit and gorgeous prose he paints an ominous world where a mass murderer commits genocide on the entertainment industry and Hollywood hopefuls go underground – literally.

Before the Hollywood Apocalypse, entertainers went about their daily business. Attending the Golden Me Awards was just another obligation for the elite members of the community.

Amanda sat in the audience, patiently waiting for her award to be announced, and politely pretending that she cared who wrote what song, or who designed which dress. Nobody at home cared, which was why most award shows had started granting some awards in a separate ceremony, for those really boring aspects of filmmaking. She just wished that the Gimmes would have learned that lesson so that she wouldn’t have to sit through some boring foreign director talking about how great his movie was, in an accent that made it nearly impossible to understand a word that he was saying.

Alas, Amanda never did receive her Gimme, and bizarre things happened when television and movies were no longer available.

Fathers threw balls at small children who then threw the balls back.

Younger children went insane, insisting that they were pirates, army men, or grown family units, pouring invisible tea from small plastic teapots.

But at least the few remaining survivors adhered to entertainment-industry-decorum.

Of course, ask anyone at The Studio and they’d tell you that one of the writers had come up with the name [Starlette]. To give Wacky Best Friend credit would mean altering the terms of his contract and any sort of contract negotiation would give him more power than The Studio wished him to have. After all, he was only meant to play a supporting role in any of this.

Confronting evil forces the only way it knows how, the Hollywood underground polishes scripts, assembles a suitable wardrobe, and applies just the right amount of make-up. They have something the enemy doesn’t – perfect hair, dedicated actors, and kick-ass props.

Somehow this novel drives the reader to feel a variety of competing emotions all at once. You will savor mocking Hollywood’s idiosyncrasies, take pleasure in seeing the entertainment elite humbled, mourn the tragic loss of life, and cheer for Hollywood to return to its former glory.

All she could do was watch. The television screen which had been tuned into the GMAs was now showing nothing but a network logo. Tessa held her cell phone, which received updates from many of the celebrity social networking accounts. She had set it up that way so that she could be in touch with the world that she was once a part of. So that she could hear about opportunities. So that she could dream of the days when she was one of those actresses that she now followed online.

On this night, most of the updates were the same. They spoke of the pain that came from multiple stab wounds; the feel of blood dripping down various body parts; the smell of one’s own flesh burning off of the bone.

Each account. Every celebrity. Every director, writer, producer… Every person from every level of the entertainment industry was reporting live from the scene of their own death.

“Starlette” can be purchase at Amazon.com.


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