Sunday, February 3, 2008

Fame Junkies: The Hidden Truths Behind America's Favorite Addiction by Jake Halpern

The one thing about reading from a list like the one for the Name that Book competition in my husband's school district is that you are sometimes exposed to books you would never pick up otherwise. Such is the case for me with Fame Junkies. I'm not generally much of a nonfiction reader anyway, and I certainly would never have chosen a book about fame.

In Fame Junkies, Halpern attempts to explore why people are so obsessed with celebrities and the idea of being famous. The book is divided into three parts: Part 1 focuses on people who are trying to become famous, Part 2 on the people who have found themselves surrounded by the famous, as assistants, stylists, etc., and Part 3 on fans.

Overall, this book left me nonplussed. I guess part of it is that, for the most part, I've never really bought into all of the Hollywood stuff. This season is the only time I've ever watched American Idol (and only because my 11-year-old daughter wanted to watch it); I don't buy People Magazine or any of the other entertainment magazines. I've never wanted to be famous. But at the same time, I'll admit that even I have been keeping up with Britney Spears' saga...

I did find parts of the book interesting - for example, the psychology behind people's addiction to fame. But overall, it just made me relieved that I have somehow escaped this addiction and sad to hear what measures some families will take in hopes that their child will somehow break through and make it in Hollywood.

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