Now Starring Vivien Leigh Reid: Diva in Training

Now Starring Vivien Leigh Reid: Diva in Training

by Yvonne Collins, Sandy Rideout
     
 

Moments after arriving in L.A., Vivien Leigh Reid is already questioning her decision to spend another summer with her mother, actress Annika Anderson. Last summer's "family reunion" on a film set in Ireland may have turned out okay, but Annika is still a grade-A diva.

Living in L.A. does have its upside. Leigh is taking classes at one of the city's best acting

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Overview

Moments after arriving in L.A., Vivien Leigh Reid is already questioning her decision to spend another summer with her mother, actress Annika Anderson. Last summer's "family reunion" on a film set in Ireland may have turned out okay, but Annika is still a grade-A diva.

Living in L.A. does have its upside. Leigh is taking classes at one of the city's best acting schools, and she scores a role on a hot TV soap, Diamond Heights. Better yet, her cute Irish boyfriend is coming to visit. But Leigh soon finds that dealing with Annika is easy compared to navigating the shark-infested waters of Hollywood, where even a taste of fame quickly turns a girl's head.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
I can't say enough wonderful things about this book. It is hilarious, the characters are well developed and likable, and Vivian Leigh's dreams of becoming a starlet will touch the hearts of those who read this book. Vivian's father sends her to Hollywood to spend the summer with her actress mother. This is not exactly what Vivian had in mind for the summer, but she had no voice in the decision. Obviously this sets the tone for this beginning of the story. The relationship between Vivian, a sassy teenager caught in that awkward emotional roller coaster with hormones changing daily or should I say minute-by-minute, and a flashy mother who loves life, is challenging to say the least. The good news is that with completion of acting classes and having a mother who has contacts, Vivian lands a small part (two or three lines) in a soap opera. Somehow this girl with little style and scratched designer glasses turns into Diva in Training. Look out Hollywood! Unfortunately, Vivian over does it in her Diva mode and is fired. Just another hard lesson learned in growing up. The flip side to this is she learned from that experience and made the following statement about being fired, "I didn't stink . . . I just got too big for my britches." This is a fast moving story, and putting some of the text in script form adds interest to the format. I am sure all budding starlets will enjoy this book, but so will all the girls who dream about becoming famous. This is a super book! 2006, St. Martin's, Ages 12 to 16.
—Kathie M. Josephs
VOYA
In the same witty, rebellious, but reflective voice of Introducing Vivien Leigh Reid: Daughter of the Diva (St. Martin's Griffin, 2005), this sequel finds sixteen-year-old Leigh spending the second summer with her B-movie diva mother, Annika. Mom enrolls Leigh in an acting class, Reality Method 101, filled with children of Hollywood royalty. Leigh bonds with Karis, daughter of a no-nonsense acting family, and defends herself from an indulged, jealous clique. Roger, Annika's on/off boyfriend, connects Leigh with a soap opera role, but as Leigh's acting skills build, her attitude erodes. Demanding, selfish behavior costs her Karis's friendship, her Irish boyfriend, and eventually her job. In the final class project, Leigh's in-group partner abandons her. But Leigh ad-libs a comic, dual role version of Gone with the Wind and passes the course. Written out of the soap opera via a fatal fall, she wins praise for the death scene. With her parents' advice and support, Leigh is smart enough to find the person she used to be, reconnects with Karis, and hopes to do the same with her boyfriend. The plot line and humor will grab junior and senior high school female readers. Parents might object to some of Leigh's choices in language and social life, but mother and daughter grow closer because even though these tyrannical divas make hurtful mistakes, they are hard-working survivors. VOYA CODES: 4Q 4P J S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Broad general YA appeal; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2006, St. Martin's Press, 242p., Trade pb. Ages 12 to 18.
—Lucy Schall
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-Leigh Reid, who first appeared in Introducing Vivien Leigh Reid (St. Martin's, 2005), spent the summer she was 15 with Annika Anderson, her estranged, actress mother who left the family when Leigh was just a toddler. Her father insisted that she have "bonding" time with the B-movie diva on a movie set in Ireland. Leigh landed a supporting role in the film and despite seeing her mother's extreme vanity up close, she decided to spend the next summer with her in L.A. to attend a prestigious acting class. In this book, Leigh does just that, and is recommended for a soap-opera audition that she nails due to her varied accents and versatility. She plays "Willow," a British diva whose "attitude" crosses the continent and translates into Leigh's real-life existence. As a result, her relationships with friends and colleagues suffer. Surprisingly, it is Annika who tells her daughter that she can't get ahead without working hard, taking direction, and keeping her ego in check. By book's end, Leigh is ready for a turn out of the spotlight, but chances are that she and Annika will have other opportunities for drama, both on and off the screen. This volume is pop-culture fun with a moral; the mother-daughter relationship is rather two-dimensional, but extreme diva behavior in both characters makes for a juicy read.-Tracy Karbel, Glenside Public Library District, Glendale Heights, IL Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312338398
Publisher:
St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
01/10/2006
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range:
13 - 18 Years

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