Ugh, Self Thinks She Knows Where This Is Headed

With her “procurement” of a young, pretty 22-year-old to be the personal assistant of predator/executive producer Hugo North, the narrator, Sarah Lai, is complicit. She needs someone to get the boss off her back, and the pretty young thing is just the ticket. What happens to that young woman after (she’s expected to provide sexual favors, and she does, and Sarah knows she does, but all she does is shrug and look the other way because, with her boss distracted, he is less of a jerk to her.) is partly Sarah’s fault.

Even worse is to come. The star of the film under production is a young actress named Holly Randolph who keeps herself “safe” from the executive producer’s predatory gaze by forming a fast friendship with Sarah Lai, the only other woman on-set. If Holly thinks Sarah is going to stick up for her when the executive producer starts demanding sexual favors — think again, Holly!

Ugh, self’s stomach is beginning to twist. She just knows Sarah Lai isn’t strong enough to stick up for the actress. She’ll look the other way, the way she did when she “procured” the personal assistant.

Hollywood film sets were such toxic environments — particularly for women. It seems there were only two ways for women to go: be Mother Theresa or be a slut. And don’t expect to find allies in other women, either. The women in this book, with the possible exception of the beauty who has her first starring role, are all looking out for themselves, and that means never crossing a male boss.

Which leaves the men. Is there not one upstanding man in this whole lot who will stick up for a woman being exploited in this way? Self considers the men in this novel. They’re all sleazebags, so no.


Sarah Lai leaves Holly at a party in the executive producer’s rented house. Holly considered her a friend. Instead of warning her, Sarah leaves her alone there. And she knows full well what is going to happen, since she herself was mauled by the executive producer, moments earlier.

Some friend you are, Sarah Lai. If the situation had been reversed, Holly would never have left that house without dragging you along with her. Gonna have to speed-read these last few pages.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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