Deborah Moggach's books nearly always have a strong female protagonist at their centre, and this one is no exception. Jules is working in local community theatre, playing a fairy in a children's play touching on environmental themes when, just as she is about to go on stage her audience disappears. The children, together with the whole locality, have gone to a street nearby, where fabulous Hollywood star Lila Dune is filming a scene. Jules is recognised by another actor - she is a stalwart of minor productions and walk-on TV, and when the stand-in for Lila Dune is taken ill Jules is asked to step in.
Part of her is insulted - she's an actor, after-all and stand-ins are more part of the crew than the cast, but the chance to get closer to the magical film world and maybe even come to the notice of Lila Dune, proves too much to resist.
Her decision to say yes is just the beginning for Jules as she and her boyfriend, the unreliable but sensually exciting Trev, are caught up in a whole new world of filming - in New York and Los Angeles. Friendships, new relationships, jealousy and betrayal ensue. It is a fabulous roller-coaster ride for Jules, and for the readers of this fascinating and compelling book, especially as the plot-line turns darker and even more compelling.
Moggach's writing style is easy, modern, direct and the dialogue and thoughts of her protagonists are often savagely funny. She allows the characters a judicious amount of detail and background to give them their own developmental reality. This is a stunningly good book.