Hi Virtually Readers! I have been a really slack blogger lately, and I’m very sorry. But I’m on almost-holiday now and hopefully I will be able to write lots of posts and pull my life together. There are many many ideas in my head…I just need to write the posts! Anyway, today the post is Eight Reasons to Read Lucy Parker, in case you didn’t guess from the title….or the picture…haha. Lucy Parker is my new favourite (and only favourite so far) romance novelist. I’d heard vaguely of Lucy parker, who writes romantic contemporary fiction, but Ella (from Novelly Ella) was raving about ‘Act Like It’ and it was at the library and I was in a bit of a book slump and her books were just what I needed and I had Ella (and now Lara) to fangirl with which was great. Lucy is from New Zealand which earns her SO MANY bonus points.
1.These books are nerdy
I love all the references to Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings and other bits of fan culture. And it’s not like the obvious things, it’s references to like Umbridge’s décor style and so on. It’s so fun to spot!.
2.They have really complicated characters
I like nuanced characters, and Lucy’s books have them in droves. The interplay of career and personal life is a particular focus in different ways—in all of the London Celebrities books, the characters end up falling in love with people they work with. That can be weird and also good. I also loved the depiction of Sophy as an introvert in Artistic Licence—everyone around her accepted that sometimes she needed to be solitary, and her own understand of what that could mean in a serious relationship was a huge and well written piece of her character development.
3.The plots never feel contrived
One thing I struggle with when I read romance novels is that often the plot hinges around one character not telling the other character something and then the other character overreacting to create ~drama~. While there are pieces of this in Lucy’s books, it’s never the centre of the book—instead, she creates genuine and heartfelt reasons for why they can’t be together, with the climax often about the main characters different reactions to external situations. All of her characters feel really genuine, which makes it that much more satisfying when they find a way to be together.
- The stories are funny
I won’t describe any particular scenes, because you deserve to read them for yourself, but the characters and snarky (but not mean) and there are little moments of ridiculousness which I just love.
- A really in depth look into the theatre world
I don’t know much about the professional theatre world, and haven’t had much cause to think about it. I don’t know how accurate this is of course, but I know that Lucy does pretty strenuous research. In different books she plays with different elements of being a professional in the theatre world—making the transition from film to stage, being an understudy, acting in a theatre which is only juuuuust financially stable.
- The role of media
I dabble in journalism so I find it fascinating to think about media and what it is and the role it plays in our lives. This is obviously even more relevant if you are even slightly famous, and media becomes a big part of all of Lucy’s stories (I think she used to work for a newspaper). In Artistic Licence, I liked the description and awareness of how important interviews are. Act Like It definitely has the biggest media presence—there’s a very memorable scene where Lainie and Richard get interviewed on a talk show, and each chapter starts with a tweed from a fictional magazine called London Celebrity. It’s all very elegantly incorporated in the story.
- All in the same world
All of the characters in the London Celebrity series know each other, or know of each other. For instance, Lily from Pretty Face is best friends with Trix from Making Up, and also acts in a production with Freddy, who will be the heroine of book number four. I love it when there are companion novels like this.
- Clever titles
I got to the end of this post and realized that I hadn’t said the names of the books! Lucy Parker has 3 books in the London Celebrities series at the moment: Act Like It, about Richard and Lainie who don’t like each other and have to act like they’re a couple; Pretty Face, about Lily who is trying to be taken seriously as an actress, and Luc, her director; and Making Up, about Leo and Trix, who have known each other from when they were teenagers, and really don’t like each other. Trix is a circus artist and Leo is a make-up artist. She’s also written Artistic Licence, under the name Elle Pierson, which is about Mick and Sophy. Mick’s a security guard, and Sophy is an introverted sculptor and they are so sweet together! You should obviously read and enjoy and apprectiate and buy her books because she is such an excellent writer.
Have you read any of Lucy Parker’s books? you totally should! and who’s your go to author for book slumps (or an author you’re saving for a slumpy moment?)