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The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes
The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes: A Novel | Elissa R. Sloan
73 posts | 63 read | 27 to read
In vein of Daisy Jones & The Six and Everything I Never Told You, this debut novel probes the dark side of fame after a former pop star ends her own life. Cassidy Holmes isn't just a celebrity. She is "Sassy Gloss," the fourth member of the hottest pop group America has ever seen. Before Britney stunned everyone with "Toxic," before Christina went dirrty, Gloss was the pop act that everyone idolized. Fans couldn't get enough of them, their music, and the drama that followed them like moths to a flame--until the group's sudden implosion in 2002. And at the center of it all was Sassy Cassy, the Texan with a signature smirk that had everyone falling for her. But now she's dead. Suicide. The world is reeling from this unexpected news, but no one is more shocked than the three remaining bandmates. Fifteen years ago, Rose, Merry, and Yumi had been the closest to Cassidy, and this loss is hitting them hard. Before the group split, they each had a special bond with Cassidy--truths they told, secrets they shared. After years apart, each is wondering: what could they have done? Told in multiple perspectives--including Cassidy herself--and different timelines, this is a behind-the-scenes look into the rise and fall of a pop icon, and a penetrating examination of the dark side of celebrity and the industry that profits from it.
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Cathyloves2read
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Mehso-so

This was a tough book to rate.It seemed to fall flat for me.It didn‘t seem to go anywhere. I felt a bit like I was reading about something I‘d already heard.I also had a hard time relating to any of the characters.The “girl group” definitely reminded me of the Spice Girls.They were definitely after my time, as I‘m a bit older.Maybe that‘s why I couldn‘t quite relate. I had trouble buying into the way that the controversial occurrences were handled

11 likes1 stack add
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KristiAhlers
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Panpan

More like the unraveling for the reader. This reads like a sad knock off of Daisy Jones and the Six. Only think less Fleetwood Mac and more Spice Girls. And not in a good way. A lot going on here and we never learn why Cassidy took her own life. There is a serious trigger warning at the beginning of the book so I won‘t go into that. Put this one down frequently. Started it back in September finished it today. Yeah. That.

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Katie.happens
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Pickpick

This novel leaves you with so many mixed feelings. The author has a true talent in being able to take dark themes and show so many sides and perspectives you‘re left wondering how you‘d handle such a situation. A great read right now if you‘re caught up in the Free Brittany movement and the dark sides of fame.

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bookandbedandtea
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Pickpick

This was a mixed bag. Pro: the behind the scenes look at a world famous girl band & that it highlighted how easy it was to abuse & exploit these young girls. (Young boys, too, I'm sure but that wasn't this book.) The flashbacks which showed us why Cassidy ultimately killed herself. (Not a spoiler, it's in the first chapter.) The dynamics of the group. Con: we don't get to know the other girls well so it feels unbalanced. We don't get to know ⬇️

bookandbedandtea Cassidy after she left the band so it's a little hard to understand her choices. I plan to read Daisy Jones & The Six next month & I think it will be interesting to compare the two. @TheAromaofBooks this is my #DoubleSpin for this month. 1y
TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!! 1y
32 likes2 comments
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Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks
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Eggs (I see Kitty Mug) 📙🧡📙 1y
79 likes2 comments
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aliasNayNay
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Pickpick

It's a novel that is very character-focused, we get a up close and personal account of the four major players of a young girls singing group, Cassidy, Yumi, Rose, and Meredith. Sloan's writing is excellent, the characterization is very well-done. It is a very human story with elements of love, friendship, betrayal, trust, and family. If you are a fan of Daisy Jones & The Six, I think you will be a fan of this story too.

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Tiffiney
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Pickpick

Started slow...wasn‘t sure if I was gonna stick with it...but it wound up being pretty good! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

37 likes1 stack add
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Rissa1
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Mehso-so

The 1st half of this book almost had me abandoning it, the second half was much better.

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magyklyXdelish
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Pickpick

This was better than I was expecting which is good but this was definitely one hell of a slow burn. I was definitely very attached to Cassidy and her story but I felt it drag when reading from the perspective of the other 3. I‘m glad I read it but I don‘t know if I‘d read it again.

Finishing this gives me my first bingo for #BookSpinBingo in months!

Also at just over 3 hrs for #20in4 - wish I brought another book to work 😕

TheAromaofBooks Yay bingo!!!! 2y
Andrew65 Well done, a good start. 😊 2y
33 likes1 stack add2 comments
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magyklyXdelish
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Since I work 3rd and it‘s always slow enough to read, I‘ll be starting the #20in4 now 🤗

I always miss out on the readathons because I‘m scatterbrained so this is the first I‘ve done in several months.

I don‘t have any goals or pre planned books. Just want to see how much I can get done. I mean, ideally I‘d like to finish this book so I guess there‘s one goal 😆

Andrew65 Good luck, great to have you with us. 😊👍 2y
32 likes1 comment
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Victoriahoperose
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Pickpick

This book was tough. It deals with some dark themes like suicide, abuse, drug use, eating disorders, etc. But, it was so good. The writing was excellent and the story of a girl group and how they came together and fell apart was just so interesting to me. It reminded me of The Spice Girls and I just didn‘t want this book to end, even after 400 pages. So glad I finally got to this one!!

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Soubhiville
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Pickpick

I think it would be useful for more authors and publishers to consider putting notes like this at the beginning of their books.

Gloss hits the pop scene and immediately takes off, and the four young singers have to dive headlong into the fast paced celebrity life. Lots of teenage drama and bad decisions, but also glimmers of trying to be friends and splashes of young love. I did enjoy this, even though there is sadness from the above warned.

Hollie I loved the “please be gentle with yourself.” It felt like a genuine trigger warning instead of “I better cover my ass in case someone is upset.” 2y
Soubhiville @Hollie I agree ❤️ 2y
Hooked_on_books I really liked this book. I had thought it was going to be fluffy, gossipy, and silly, and that‘s not at all what it is. For which I‘m glad. It‘s a serious meditation on fame and how it can damage and destroy. And I agree, the content warning is nice, especially at the front where someone could flip to it in a store and put the book back down if need be. Maybe someday all books will start this way. 2y
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Soubhiville @Hooked_on_books I agree, much less a book about how great fame is, and much more what I imagine is true to life- barely doing the thing you are known for, in this case singing, and mainly exhaustingly being hauled from one engagement to another, and the horror of stalkers and controlling men making their buck off your talent. I appreciated the older mentor telling them most of their money would be from product branding, not performing. 2y
Soubhiville @Hooked_on_books it showed the exploitation by controlling men really well, and how easy that can be to fall into, as well as how difficult it is for young girls to negotiate those hurdles. 2y
Hooked_on_books I completely agree. Also, I feel like fame is packaged in such an appealing way typically, and this book made fame look ugly, which I suspect is much closer to the truth. I think anyone trying to be famous should read this first and then think about if that‘s what they still want. 2y
68 likes1 stack add7 comments
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GidgetsTreasures75
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12-17-20: My 108th finished book of 2020! The once popular girl group, Gloss, is reeling after the loss of one of their own, 15 years after the group broke up. Told in present day by the 3 remaining singers and in past tense by Cassidy, this story is one of love, fame, treachery and ultimately loss. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ #theunravelingofcassidyholmes #elissasloan 👍🏼📖#️⃣1️⃣0️⃣8️⃣

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AUDIOBOOKINGWITHLEAH
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Mehso-so

The narration is performed superbly in this. While the book deals with many topics, showing the shady side of show-business and puts a lot of focus on what happened between this group of girls to bring about the unraveling of Cassidy Holmes it ultimately lacks closure. Not only for the main thread of her suicide but also for some of the other threads at play in the story.

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marleed
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Pickpick

The Spice Girl inspired characters weren‘t as exciting as the real thing, and I thought this had a lackluster ending. But this Cali music industry in the new millennium story turned to a slow pick for me 2/3 way through. Being the victim of harassment of any kind changes who we are and need not be our secret to keep.

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booksandcats13
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Mehso-so

I feel like my main issue with this book is that it isn't really about Cassidy Holmes. This is the story of the start of mega successful pop group Gloss. At the end I still don't feel like I have insight into why Cassidy chooses to take her life.

The book leaves a lot of threads hanging. The writing is good and I would be happy to check this author out in the future. I just felt like the story needed a little more to click into place.

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Hooked_on_books
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Pickpick

This novel appears at first glance to be a frothy, salacious look at a fictional pop star. In reality, it‘s a look at the darker, uglier side of fame once the gloss has been removed. I thought it was terrific and I‘m really glad I read it. #botm #bookspinbingo

Megabooks Great review!! 2y
Hooked_on_books @Megabooks Thanks! I remember that you liked this one, too. I‘m a bit surprised by its low Litsy rating. I wonder if that‘s because people were looking for a gossipy, frothy beach read and that‘s not what this is, so they were disappointed. 2y
57 likes2 comments
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ambam1987
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Pickpick

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ if you grew up in the 90s listening to boy/girl bands or watching VH1‘s Behind The Music you should check this book out!

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Jilly6183
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Mehso-so

It gained strength as it went on, at least enough to pull it out of pan territory. This may very well be an accurate telling of the entertainment industry, but felt too ripped from the headlines rather than providing any real insight into that life. The characters were underdeveloped and similarly felt like caracatures ripped from headlines. A fine beach read but that's about it.

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Melismatic
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Mehso-so

A take on a fictional 00‘s pop girl group and how fame can exacerbate your worst toxic impulses. For me, it was better than Daisy Jones...but not by much. It felt very soapy and all the characters were 1-dimensional at best.

Moonprismpower I disliked the HIMYM ending to Daisy Jones. Ugh. What did you like in this compared to Daisy? 😃 2y
Melismatic @Moonprismpower Daisy didn‘t feel like a novel. It felt lazy. No one talks like those characters did. This at least tried to be a novel. 2y
Moonprismpower Yeah I get that. It felt long winded. I have to say the only character I liked was Karen, the keyboardist. But yeah I kept pushing through and am glad I finished it but It is not a book I‘d recommend. 2y
Melismatic @Moonprismpower definitely agree about Karen lol 2y
20 likes4 comments
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Jilly6183
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What an important author‘s note.

Boooooks That‘s such a good thoughtful thing to do. Although, I don‘t feel like I personally need trigger warnings for book‘s, they should definitely have them I never understand why some people have a problem with something they can skip past if it‘s not relevant to them, hopefully this will become a more common feature in books in future. thanks for sharing this 😊 2y
49 likes1 comment
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Jemgirl2014
Pickpick

Guess I'm in the minority because I actually liked this book. Sloan does a good job of describing the dark underbelly of the music industry and its effects on a young starlet living in its world. I just wish I been given a chance to get know Cassidy as an adult. Maybe I would have had a better understanding of why she did what she did in the end. A great debut!

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swishandflick
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Panpan

Despite the mixed reviews I went into this pretty optimistic, but it really fell flat. And the shifting perspectives didn't work for me because it felt like they all had the same voice. I feel like I *might* have had a different take if it was reworked and repackaged as YA? The Daisy Jones comparisons definitely do it any favors. #BOTM

97 likes1 comment
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Kboltz
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Pickpick

I didn‘t think that I would like this book this much. Compared to Daisy Jones; other than being about the music industry , very different books. Cassidy competes in a national singing show and her life unravels as she makes it in the music world. Loved the usage of nostalgia in what we watch and see in the tabloids. I‘m sure a lot of this behavior is sadly true in the world of the famous.

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Valink
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Today marks the beginning of suicide prevention week. I think this authors note is great and I wish more media dealing with suicide was as thoughtful. As a Social Worker I received zero training on suicide prevention in grad school, but am now a certified trainer on the topic. We can‘t just expect people to reach out though, as a colleague said the other day, we need to help people create lives worth living.

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Bookish_B
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Mehso-so

I struggled to get into this book. I got about halfway through but still wasn‘t sure I‘d finish it. I enjoyed the second half much more -the ending was certainly something to think about! But overall I was never really a fan of Cassidy. I also wished the author didn‘t make it seem like every moment of being a pop star was an absolutely miserable experience. It just didn‘t seem realistic. All in all, kind of a mixed bag for me.

Beatlefan129 Beautiful photo 2y
Bookish_B @Beatlefan129 thank you! 2y
27 likes2 comments
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Lissa00
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Mehso-so

I‘m actually caught up this year on #BOTM picks! This book was entertaining for sure, but it felt lacking in character depth. Which is surprising because it is fairly long.

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Laughterhp
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Pickpick

I didn‘t think I‘d finish another book in August, but I did.

I picked this up from #BOTM because it was a debut. I didn‘t know if I would like it, but I surprisingly did. There was a lot of layers and issues going on with all the girls and the band and even though they were together all the time, they all had secrets. This book handles a lot of triggering issues. The author lists them all. Read the About a Book at the end, I enjoyed it.

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rather_be_reading
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Panpan

Just an Eh for me. I know I shouldnt compare books but Daisy Jones was way better than this one. I didnt care for any of the characters of their stories. Pass on this one.

jouleian That‘s kinda why I avoided that one, bc I LOVE Daisy and the Six so much. 2y
AmyK1 I agree. Daisy Jones was so much better. 2y
rather_be_reading @AmyK1 DJ was so good! 2y
56 likes4 comments
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peacegypsy
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#botm Just started this.

25 likes1 stack add
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rather_be_reading
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Think it should read as: ",so she chats for a few more..."

AmyK1 I noticed quite a few errors in that one 😞 2y
DieAReader 🤦🏻‍♀️🙄😬 2y
Sargar114 Oy, that makes me cringe 2y
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Laughterhp Uh oh. All your posts are making me nervous to pick up this book! 2y
rather_be_reading @AmyK1 thats the only so far but im only 200 pgs in 2y
rather_be_reading @Laughterhp haha!! this is the 1st in this book! the other ones i posted were a diff book 2y
Laughterhp Ohh okay! lol good to know! 2y
34 likes10 comments
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Bookish_B
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Welp. It‘s international dog day and this is what mine did to celebrate. AND SHE HAS NO SHAME. Look at her! Posing adorably in front of her work like it‘s a GOOD thing! We just got her less than two weeks ago so she‘s still learning...

Books4Ever Oh no 🤦‍♀️ not the books 😢 Gus has destroyed a few 2y
britt_brooke Oh no ... but she‘s so cute! 🐾 2y
Bookish_B @Books4Ever hopefully it‘ll just be this one?! 😆 2y
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Books4Ever @Bookish_B fingers crossed 🤞😆 2y
Bookish_B @britt_brooke she does have that going for her! 😂 2y
Hooked_on_books Oh no! 😱 On the up side, I had some book predation occur after I got my dogs many years ago, but they got over it quickly. I hope this one does, too. 2y
LeahBergen Oh nooooo! 😆😆 2y
Kloves2read Oh my goodness! 🤣 But how can you get mad at that adorable pup!? 😁🥰 I wish you the best of luck with her! What type of dog is she? 2y
BookNAround It‘s really hard to turn pages when you don‘t have opposable thumbs, ya know! 2y
rather_be_reading oh my gosh! she is lucky she is cute! 2y
41 likes10 comments
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katlyn447
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Mehso-so

⭐⭐💫
The story opens with Cassidy's death and then jumps between timelines and POVs to explain how we got there.
I'd read several reviews about how *lighthearted* this book is... did we read the same book? I understand the author was exploring depression, but the main character never experienced anything positive at all. The quote is from a note by the author, and I think Cassidy and the reader really needed these moments left in.
#botm

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rather_be_reading
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Book 154 of 2020
#botm

This is my LAST Book of the Month in my "backlist"!!! Cant wait to tackle my tbr next!

jewright Go, you! Awesome job! 2y
LoveLightJoy 😄😄😄😄🎉🎉🎉🎉 2y
75 likes3 stack adds4 comments
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Lauren.Archer
Bailedbailed

I was so into the idea of this book, but 60+ pages in I am just not into this. Maybe I will save this for another time. I am supposed to go to her author talk next week, maybe she will inspire me to pick it back up.

Annie1215 Oh no! I was looking forward to this one. I‘ll have to think on it. 2y
peaknit Oh no me too, is the author talk virtual for anyone? 😊 2y
Lauren.Archer @peaknit it is for BookPeople in Austin. They never do free events but this one is. Just go to their website and sign up for the virtual talk with the author under events. Let me know if you have any issues. 2y
peaknit Thank you! I was able to find it, I will check my schedule. I have enjoyed very little about the pandemic, but virtual author talks have been a bright spot 😊 2y
48 likes4 comments
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AmyK1
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Pickpick

This is between a pick and so-so for me. It was somewhat predictable-2 of the major plot points were pretty obvious almost from the beginning-and the writing wasn‘t great. It read like YA. Maybe it is? The story itself was good though.

#bookspinbingo @TheAromaofBooks

TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!!! 2y
32 likes1 comment
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Mariah2
Mehso-so

Overall concept for this was great, but I felt that it fell flat of its mark. The writing wasn‘t that great in my opinion which made the narrative also so-so. Ending left me with more questions and felt like it wasn‘t completed.

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Melkyl
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Mehso-so

This book was good but not great. It felt very lightweight, which is troubling since it deals with a character committing suicide. I would have liked to see much more character development and expansion of situations. There just wasn‘t much depth to try to deal with such a serious topic. #BOTM

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Loveforlit2
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Mehso-so

I want to give this book a different rating but I can‘t. The first 150 pages lacked character development. There is a chance for the author to really explore depression and how it manifests but it misses the mark at points.

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TheRomantiCate
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Pickpick

Just wow... such a great book... I‘m definitely going to be thinking about this one for a while...

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Jbakesmcgee3
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed this book, major TW that the author gives on the first page. Very nostalgic for me as it is about a pop group in the early 2000s ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

13 likes1 stack add
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Mariah2
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Love this!❤️ so important to be informed

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Kimberlone
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Work/life has been a bit crazy the past couple weeks so I haven‘t been Litsy-ing much recently, but I finally got my #BOTM box yesterday and have to share.

I also have been in a slight reading slump...I‘m currently stuck in the middle of a couple books. Been reading a bit here and there, but it‘s been slow-going. My BF will be going back to work soon, though, and my reading will probably pick up again after that.

Saknicole Bummer about the work return but at least the reading is good! Dillon is actually usually the one who gives me withering looks if I interrupt his book 😂 2y
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks I‘ve been in a slump too 😫 2y
59 likes3 comments
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Megabooks
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Pickpick

I don‘t like the comparisons to Daisy Jones. Daisy is a woman coming into her power through music. Cassidy is a girl seeing herself and her life through distorted funhouse mirrors of tabloids and hanger ons.

The members of Gloss are also better fleshed out characters than The Six. DJ is 3⭐️ CH is 4⭐️, imo.

In real life, Stevie Nicks had a lot more control over her image than Britney. #freebritney It was interesting to read each time novelized.

Megabooks I realize with each book‘s rating on here it‘s definitely an #unpopularopinion 2y
Cinfhen This was #MoreMehThanYeah for me 🙁Too much #SpiceGirls not enough #Britney but I‘m glad you found it entertaining 💕 2y
See All 21 Comments
Soubhiville I like your review, you‘ve influenced me to stack it! 2y
BarbaraBB That‘s a good comparison. Now you should read 😉 2y
Megabooks @Cinfhen the group and the other members of Gloss were Spice Girl-like but Cassidy‘s life was very Britney to me. Have you ever fallen into the #freebritney internet web? I did one night. Crazy! 2y
Megabooks @Soubhiville fantastic! I hope you enjoy it! 2y
Megabooks @BarbaraBB that is soooo long. I looked into it, and the audiobook is 27 hours, which is two to three times longer than my usual listen!! 2y
Cinfhen My daughter is OBSESSED!!! She talks about it endlessly!! I feel for Britney #FreeBritney and yes 😂, Cassidy was meant to be a riff on Britney but I felt like she was upstaged by Gloss 🙄 This book made me feel old 😂 2y
Megabooks @Cinfhen I spent two hours on it one night when I couldn‘t sleep, but it is crazy. I was a bit old for Britney; I can‘t remember any songs other than One More Time and Toxic, but I definitely remember her more from the tabloids. I subscribed to US Weekly in vet school because I needed something mindless! (And support magazines...🤪) 2y
Cinfhen My daughter grew up LOVING Britney/ we flew to Vegas for her 21 birthday to see Britney‘s show. It was probably the happiest day of my daughter‘s life. I‘m not even joking! And I used to LOVE US Weekly and People!!!!! 2y
Megabooks @Cinfhen I‘ve never been much of a concert person. (Can we still be friends??) The only “big name” amphitheater concert I‘ve seen is REM, which definitely squares me as older. 😂🤪😂 The BFF is a huge REM fan, and I still can still sing all the words to End of the World As We Know It! 2y
Cinfhen We‘ll always be friends xxx How‘s your dad doing? 2y
Megabooks @Cinfhen yay!! 😘😘 he is making huge progress! He can walk over 250 feet with the help of a hemi cane. He can grip things with his left hand. All the therapists want to work with him because he just works so hard and is so motivated. We are really proud of him!! We think he‘ll come home sometime in the second half of September, but mom and I have his room ready as of yesterday! 2y
Megabooks @Cinfhen thanks for asking!!! 2y
Cinfhen I‘m sure he‘s a fighter/ just like you 💪🏼 2y
Megabooks @Cinfhen thanks!! We‘re a tough family! 2y
Andrew65 Brilliant 🙌🙌🙌 2y
Megabooks @Andrew65 thanks!! 2y
CarolynM Stacking this one (I wasn't mad about Daisy Jones either). Glad to hear about your Dad's progress. Wishing him well with the rehab and keeping his motivation strong🤗 2y
Megabooks @CarolynM thank you so much!! 💜💜 I hope you enjoy the book. 2y
98 likes6 stack adds21 comments
review
Eringogreen
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Mehso-so

Honestly, I felt that this left some room to be desired. The voices of each character were somewhat indistinguishable, the details around the road to fame and related barriers were almost non-existent, and the emotions were barely explored. There was potential here, but ultimately I think it barely scratched the surface.

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Purrfectpages
Pickpick

If you remember the pop explosion of the late 90/early 2000‘s, competition shows like American Idol, or the voyeuristic tendencies of Behind the Music, then this might be the book for you. This is the story of a prematurely fallen star, but also how sudden fame engulfed each member of a girl group. Cassidy‘s tale has the brightest sheen of sadness. However, this wasn‘t just the story of Cassidy‘s undoing, but rather how fame effected all of them.

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Purrfectpages
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I got a little crazy requesting so many ARCs on NetGalley. Hopefully this will be my last one for awhile because I have a bunch of books I still want to read sooner rather than later!

rachelm I‘ve heard great things! 2y
42 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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bookish_wookish
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I forgot i even got a BOTM! This one took way longer than usual to get here! 🙃

kamoorephoto Mine only just came today but of course in Seattle so it ALWAYS takes forever! 2y
38 likes1 stack add1 comment
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Bookish_B
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Can‘t wait to dig in! I think I‘ll start with The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes...

35 likes1 stack add