Meryl Wilsner

Books: Romance | Queer

Something to Talk About (2020)

Something to Talk About (2020)

Jo Jones is a Big Deal in Hollywood. She started out as a child star, then went on to script-writing and producing, and although she's currently working on an award-winning show, she wants to do something else–a super hero movie.

He didn't come out and say it was because Jo was a Chinese American woman. Instead the article was filled with worries about too soft a touch and a concern she would somehow miss the truly American essence of Silver.

But she's tired of dealing with the questions and doubts as to whether she can handle a block buster, so she decides to take her assistant Emma Kaplan with her to the SAG awards, to act as a buffer and to deflect questions about the movie. But pictures of the two on the red carpet start rumors of a secret relationship that quickly spirals out of control.

Her door was closed, but Emma came right in.

"Yes, boss?"

Jo pointed to the phone, where the guy was doing everything he could to avoid saying the word lesbian.

I didn't dislike this story. As a plus, there was very little boinking and it was all at the very end of the book and easy to skip past.

And the Hollywood bits were interesting, since they focused not on the glamour but on all the negatives of being a star–namely being the constant subject of gossip, paparazzi, and a fair amount of movie industry awfulness.

Most of the story was Jo and Emma denying how they felt about each other, or refusing to say anything about their feelings because of their work relationship. Which was fine, but aggravating, because I get annoyed when people talk to everyone but each other about their feelings. Yes, it would have been problematic for them to do so because of their work relationship, but still.

Although most of the story is told from Emma's point-of-view, we do occasionally get chapters from Jo's PoV and although I understand why those chapters were important (since they told us a lot we would not otherwise know about Jo's past and her friendships), they were infrequent enough that it was a surprise every time it happened.

It also made me far less patient with Emma's feelings and actions.

The book also had a major Me Too segment, which (although important) almost felt a little too pat–that Jo started the whole ball rolling. It wasn't a big issue in the long run, it just didn't particularly work for me, as it felt unrealistic, focused as it was on Jo.

So, it was fine. But mostly not my thing.

Publisher: Berkley 

October 2020 | Rating: 7/10