TLC Book Tours Presents: So L.A. Review and Free Giveaway

So L.A. by Bridget Hoida

Release date: 2012 / 384 pages

Synopsis(from Amazon):Beautiful Magdalena de la Cruz breezed through Berkeley and built an empire selling designer water. She’d never felt awkward or unattractive… until she moved to Los Angeles. In L.A. where everything smells like acetone and Errol Flynn Magdalena attempts to reinvent herself as a geographically appropriate bombshell with rhinestones, silicone and gin as she seeks an escape from her unraveling marriage and the traumatic death of her younger brother, Junah. Magdalena’s Los Angeles is glitzy and glamorous but also a landscape of the absurd. Her languidly lyrical voice provides a travel guide for a city of make-believe, where even Hollywood insiders feel left out.

Review:   I agreed to read and review Hoida’s So L.A. for TLC’s book tour because it sounded light and summery — I have spent the past few months reading mostly non-fiction and cookbooks.  I knew it was Hoida’s debut novel, so I wasn’t sure what to expect.  I’ve only been to L.A. once — briefly — but, as all Bravo viewers must feel, I have many sun-drenched images of this iconic city floating about in my consciousness.

So L.A. was not particularly “light and summery,” but — more importantly — was original and creative.  The protagonist, Magdalena de la Cruz, is forced to undertake a classic heroine’s journey after the death of her brother (not a spoiler — revealed almost immediately as well as on the book jacket) and decides to reinvent herself by moving from her family’s rural vineyards in Lodi, California to L.A., a city founded on reinvention. She discovers that sun-kissed L.A. is perfect for reincarnation, but not necessarily for renewal.  Much of the novel focuses on her “descent into darkness,” but the reader can’t help but root for Magdalena, even at her most despicable.

The author is clearly familiar with the glitz and glam of L.A. and charmingly begins and ends the novel as if the novel were a script for a movie — the ending was probably my favorite.  As a former mass media teacher, I appreciated the film-inspired chapter titles and the over-the-top plot twists and resolutions.  So, while not traditional summer fare, So L.A. ends up much more satisfying and substantial — and would make a great movie, incidentally!  😉

Interested in winning a free copy?  Simply leave me a comment below!

Thursday, July 5th:  CBS Los Angeles – LA’s Summer Reading Guide

Monday, August 13th:  The 3R’s Blog

Wednesday, August 15th:  Peppermint Ph.D.

Thursday, August 16th:  Hopelessly Devoted Bibliophile

Monday, August 20th:  Kritter’s Ramblings

Wednesday, August 22nd:  Sweet Southern Home

Thursday, August 23rd:  Book Chatter

Monday, August 27th:  Reviews by Molly

Tuesday, August 28th:  Travel Spot 

Wednesday, August 29th:  Book Club Classics!

Thursday, August 30th:  A Chick Who Reads

Tuesday, September 4th:  A Bookish Affair

Thursday, September 6th: Bookish Whimsy

Friday, September 7th:  In the Next Room

Monday, September 10th:  Colloquium

Tuesday, September 11th:  Oh! Paper Pages

Wednesday, September 12th:  Conceptual Reception

Thursday, September 13th: Seaside Book Nook

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19 Responses to TLC Book Tours Presents: So L.A. Review and Free Giveaway

  1. Michael says:

    Love a copy to read!

  2. Anita Yancey says:

    Sounds like a interesting book. I love reading books set in Hollywood. Thanks for this chance to read it.

  3. Anna Berenbrok says:

    Hmm. This would be a different book for me. I’d like to read it.
    Thanks for the giveaway.

  4. Diane Castiglione says:

    Sound like a good read. Would love to read this
    Thank you

  5. Sherrie Gil says:

    I would live to read this great looking book, always something new to learn!

  6. diane says:

    this book would be enjoyable.

  7. ellie says:

    thanks for this interesting book feature.

  8. Carol Wong says:

    I used to live in LA and it definitely had its own group of personalities! Would really love to read it to see if she picked up some up the things that I noticed.

  9. Amy says:

    This book sounds like a riveting read and one that’s unexpected and surprising. I love that you found it unique, creative, substantial and ultimately, satisfying. I’ve read some terrific reviews of this book and yours helped cement my decision to read this book. If I manage to win a copy, wonderful!

    Thank you for this giveaway and an enjoyable review.

  10. Lisa Garrett says:

    LA is a great place to visit. I would love to read this book.

  11. Teralee Elbasri says:

    Sounds different which should make it interesting!

  12. Carl says:

    I’d be really pleased to win my own copy of So L.A. Thanks for the offer!

  13. This looks like typical chick-lit but you’re the second person to say it has much more substance than you’d think. I’d love a copy for myself!

  14. Steve vetter says:

    Sounds like a good book.

  15. Wendy says:

    Sounds like an intriguing read. Please count me in the Giveaway!
    Thank you.

  16. avalonne83 says:

    Great giveaway! I’d love to be entered.

    Please count me in. Thanks.

    avalonne83 [at] yahoo [dot] it

  17. Pingback: Bridget Hoida, author of So L.A., on tour August/September 2012 | TLC Book Tours

  18. I can definitely see this one as a movie too!

    Thanks for being on the tour.

  19. Leslie says:

    I guess I shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover! When I first saw it up for review I thought light, beach read. But it looks to be much more than that. Sounds like something I’d like to read.

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