November 13, 2006

Goodbye Reality... Hello Show Biz

This book is a 2006 Cybil Award Nominee for YA Fiction.

Ali Montero's taken a big, big risk in dragging her best friend, Sosi, with her into signing up for Oye Mi Canto , the Latin language version of American Idol. It's not just that Sosi's done a Class A job of forging Ali's Dad's signature -- she did that, and boy is she paying for it. I

It's also not just that they cut school and snuck to the audition -- from the way their parent's tell it, they've done worse. It's that Ali's... won. And suddenly, it's goodbye to Ali ever being on her Daddy's good side again, it seems.

It's not that he doesn't believe in her talent -- he does. HE taught her to love the guitar, to play with him, side by side. He's a music professor, after all. Ali inherited her voice and skills from him. But a stage career? At the tender age of seventeen? What would her mother say, God rest her? No! No!

Well, maybe.

Elaine, her father's best friend, comes to the rescue and promises to chaperone. Shaking his head, Ali's father lets her go, and suddenly Ali's flying to the top of the fastest ride of her life. Oye Mi Canto is a hoot -- mean girls, cute boys, and a really hot production assistant who seems to be more than just gravitating Ali's way. But what's it's all mean? Is this life of rumors, lights, cameras, and rabid fansites what Ali really wants? Is Ali, like Sosi fears, going to change into some dubious Diva because she's famous?

Win or lose, it's Adios to My Old Life a cracklingly fast-paced, hilarious and absurd look at show biz -- the good, the bad, and the ugly. Readers will also come away hip to a few great Spanish phrases and with a new appreciation for the guitar, as well as maybe with a little more -- or a little less -- of a desire to be the next contestant on a talent reality show. A less-rosy look behind the scenes of the music, this novel is definitely recommended, and here's to more from author Caridad Ferrer!

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