Los Angeles native and budding production designer Emi is at a turning point.
High school is coming to an end, her romance with another female designer on the crew is foundering, and she has been recruited to work on a new low-budget, high-talent film that could be her big break. When visiting the estate sale of a famous movie star in search of props, Emi and her best friend, Charlotte, discover a sealed, unsent letter from the actor and decide to track down the addressee. After considerable sleuthing, the girls discover that the woman to whom the letter is addressed is deceased, but her daughter, Ava, who never knew of her connection to the star, is living in a poor part of the desert outside LA. Through many serendipitous twists of fate, their search for the heir of the old star’s fortune leads to great locations, props and finally the female lead for the new movie. Though the mystery may feel obvious, the sensitive, multifaceted novel creates an authentic portrayal of the ups and downs of life in the movie-production world—and of the coming-of-age of Emi as a talented artist whose skills and confidence in her own ability and instincts grow through the story.
An absorbing Hollywood read. (Fiction. 14-18)