Skip to content

Review: Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures

June 6, 2013

Laura Lamont's Life in Pictures

Elsa Emerson grew up in Wisconsin, spending lots of time at her parents’ theater, Cherry County Playhouse.  She eventually marries one of the actors from the theater and they move to Los Angeles so that he can pursue an acting career.  They have two children but the marriage doesn’t last.  Elsa becomes involved with a studio executive who christens her Laura Lamont and she attains coveted stardom.  Fame is not what she expected though, and Laura struggles to keep her life and family together.

Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures, by Emma Straub, follows Elsa/Laura’s life through the years from Wisconsin to Hollywood.  Even though she attained stardom, it didn’t change her life all that much – she still had her regrets and longings and needed assurance from those she loved.  Laura’s life seemed glamorous but it really wasn’t all that different once she became famous – in some ways it was more complicated.

Laura’s story was told through the years with each chapter representing a season from a different year so the book almost reads like a series of short stories.  I really liked Laura and could relate to some of her feelings and insecurities – at times it seems that she didn’t live life, but rather just allowed it to happen to her.  This is definitely a character driven novel – not a lot happens – so Laura felt like an old friend by the time I finished the book.

I liked Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures quite a bit but didn’t quite love it.  I do think those who enjoy character driven novels will enjoy it even more than I did.

Review copy provided by Penguin Books.  I am an Indiebound Affiliate.
19 Comments leave one →
  1. Beth F permalink
    June 6, 2013 7:07 am

    I love character-driven novels and this on has been on my list forever. I really, really need to read it.

  2. June 6, 2013 7:10 am

    I don’t know why but I rarely care for books about “stardom.”

  3. June 6, 2013 7:17 am

    I like character-driven novels but, like rhapsodyinbooks, don’t care for books about hollywood/show biz.

  4. June 6, 2013 8:12 am

    Nice review as always. Not sure I would like the book.

    THANKS for sharing your thoughts.

  5. Jennifer @ The Relentless Reader permalink
    June 6, 2013 9:13 am

    I meant to get to this when it first came out. Time got away from me, as it usually does. I didn’t know it was partially set in Wisconsin! I’m always giddy over WI settings since I’m a WI girl 🙂

    I’ll definitely be getting to this one eventually. Off to put it on my wish list! Thanks 😀

  6. June 6, 2013 9:17 am

    This one has been on my TBR for a while, but I’m thinking I’m going to pass on it. Doesn’t sound that great. I’m glad you posted about it – thanks! I’m crossing it off of my TBB (to be bought) list and replacing it with another title 🙂

  7. June 6, 2013 10:51 am

    I really enjoyed this story and became completely absorbed in Laura’s trials and tribulations. I did feel like the story became a bit over-the-top at points — particularly where her son was concerned — but that didn’t keep me from really staying inside it.

  8. June 6, 2013 11:40 am

    Hmmm, I’ll think about this one. I might like it, but I have so many priorities ahead of any book I’m not sure I’ll like. I’ll keep it on my “maybe” list.

  9. June 6, 2013 12:14 pm

    I’m torn on this one. Celebrity fame-and-fortune stories rarely appeal to me….but she grew up in Wisconsin like I did! And I do like character-driven books. Hmmm….

  10. sandynawrot permalink
    June 6, 2013 12:25 pm

    You and I have talked about our need for things to happen (like we sat and waiting for something to happen in “Maine” and nothing did). I love interesting characters and watching them develop and change but it takes an amazing author to make me feel that that is enough…

  11. Patty permalink
    June 6, 2013 4:44 pm

    Hmmm…sounds sort of unusual?

  12. June 6, 2013 6:05 pm

    This book sounds good to me. I like novels where I get to see a person’s life over a long period of time. Probably why I like memoirs. Thanks for recommending it.

  13. June 6, 2013 6:19 pm

    This is one of those I’ve been dying to read so even though you didn’t love it, I think it’s worth a try for me. Great review!

  14. June 6, 2013 6:26 pm

    Kathy, thank you for your honest review.

  15. June 6, 2013 7:37 pm

    thanks for your review.

  16. June 7, 2013 10:37 am

    I like character driven novels but I normally shy away from the Hollywood stories.

  17. June 9, 2013 6:28 pm

    I am a character driven junkie…I might like this one!

  18. bookingmama permalink
    June 10, 2013 9:46 am

    I really liked this one!!!

  19. June 10, 2013 5:19 pm

    I think you’re exactly right – it is very character-driven and much more about Laura’s personal journey than any particular events. I’m glad you liked it even if it wasn’t love!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: