Sonderbooks Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

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*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
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*        = Good, with reservations


***Lucky Stars

by Jane Heller

Reviewed April 21, 2003.
St. Martin’s Press, New York, 2003.  306 pages.
Available at Sembach Library (MCN F HEL).

Jane Heller’s books are invariably over-the-top, wildly funny.  I once read that a writer should never use coincidence to get his character out of a mess, but that he can use coincidence freely to get him into a mess.  Jane Heller uses this technique to hilarious effect.

Stacey Reiser is an actress with an interfering mother.  She’s not mildly interfering, but extremely so, lavishing her love and attention on Stacey by telling her how to live her life.  Just when Stacey believes her career is on the upswing, her mother announces that she’s moving closer to Stacey.

Helen Reiser moves a few houses away from Stacey, and Stacey’s life turns upside-down.  The next thing she knows, her interfering mother has become a national spokesperson for a tuna company and wins the heart of the nation.  Appearances on talk shows, movies and TV soon follow, while Stacey can no longer find work even in commercials.

This book was a selection of’s Chapter-a-day book club, and reading the beginning got me hooked.  The plot is strong and dramatic, if extreme, making the book hard to put down.  I should warn my readers that most Jane Heller books are a bit raunchy.  I thought this one, dealing with mother-daughter relationships instead of male-female ones, might not be as much so as the others, but I was wrong.

Still, if you’ve been reading plenty of heavy books lately and are in the mood for a madcap romantic comedy, you’ll find this book entertaining fun.

Reviews of other books by Jane Heller:
The Secret Ingredient
An Ex to Grind

Copyright © 2005 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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