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Book Review: Not Famous Anymore by Michael Loyd Gray

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Not Famous Anymore by Michael Loyd Gray is a fictional book which addresses the price of fame. We all know that being famous cannot be easy, but why do famous people who got what they wanted keep complaining?

Elliott Adreian’s parents have died when he was young, and while playing with a sword from World War II he accidently cut off his brother’s arm. Now a famous action hero, Elliott is a jerk and a drunk (but still popular).

Realizing that he is on his way to the point of no return, Elliott goes to rehab and starts a road trip ending up in his hometown. On the way Elliott meets old friends, old loves, as well as new ones.

Not Famous Anymore asks a very interesting question: what if you were famous and decided you didn’t want to be known anymore? I hear that often: someone who’s achieved the pinnacle of success now acts as if it is a burden. While I’m sure that it’s not easy, that is the price of success, and the famous know well ahead of time what they were getting themselves into.

What I find even more fascinating is the whole cultural phenomena of people wanting to be famous even if they are made to look like total idiots.

Every now and then my wife and I accidentally watch one of those idiotic gossip shows on TV (TMZ, Entertainment Tonight, etc.) out of sheer boredom, lack of reason, or simply as brain porn. Whenever we see the shenanigans of the rich and famous I repeat the same point I have repeated to friends, family, and whoever is willing to listen (or unwilling and has the unfortunate luck to be in the area): I can’t understand them, they are not normal people.

DaVinci wasn’t normal; Mozart wasn’t normal; Michelangelo, Picasso, DeNiro, Pecsi–they’re not normal.

Which explains their behavior, use of drugs, and why they think they look better with plastic skin than carrying the evidence of a life worth living on their faces (Kenny Rogers, I’m looking at you).

I couldn’t tell if my copy of Not Famous Anymore was an Advance Reader’s Copy (ARC) or not. I hope it was since I found several misspellings and formatting issues (expected in an ARC, but I’m only mentioning this because I couldn’t tell).

Not Famous Anymore is a well written novel with a protagonist who most of us cannot identify with. Elliott Adrian is a rich, handsome movie star, a little town boy who made it big in Hollywood and now wants nothing of it. However, the more I read, the more I discovered that behind the jerky showoff is someone who uses a defense mechanism to deal with the stresses of life in tinsel town, as well as the pressures from the sharks who hound him daily.

It is obvious that Mr. Gray does not like the Hollywood scene–while glitzy, it is a fake. A distasteful, tacky atmosphere where no one is who he or she says they are, and you cannot believe anyone anymore. No wonder a small town boy like our protagonist needs a drink to get up in the morning.

This is mainly a dialogue driven novel. There isn’t much action but Gray keeps the interest page by page. While sometimes the dialog seems unimportant (as is much of our dialogue on a daily base) it is still believable.

Not Famous Anymore is a good novel by a strong writer and I’m glad I read it.. The book encompasses excellent dialog with strong storytelling and I am looking forward to read more of the author’s work.

  • 260 pages
  • Publisher: Three Towers Press
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595981578

Buy this book in paper or electronic (Kindle) format.

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