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The Actor and the Housewife
The Actor and the Housewife
Author: Shannon Hale
What if you were to meet the number-one person on your laminated list -- you know, that list you joke about with your significant other about which five celebrities you’d be allowed to run off with if ever given the chance? And of course since it’ll never happen it doesn’t matter… — Mormon housewife Becky Jack i...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9781608192557
ISBN-10: 1608192555
Publication Date: 6/8/2010
Pages: 352
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.

3.8 stars, based on 9 ratings
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio CD
Members Wishing: 0
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed The Actor and the Housewife on + 117 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I am so disappointed in this book. I had it on my wish list FOREVER and almost bought it on eBay because I wanted to read it so badly. Now after finding it at a neighboring library I am upset it took me so long to plod through it that I ended up returning it late and it cost me a dollar! (waste) I have a compulsion to read a book after I start it even when it is hard to do so. I had to make myself read this!
So unrealistic! The book description makes it sound like she has a celebrity crush on him which is untrue. She is so deeply religious imagining a kiss between them sends her into delusions of going to hell. (I have no problem with religion just didn't like the shove it down your throat/ holy lifestyle way of writing) The beginning set up is somewhat realistic as far as bumping into each other a few times (coincidence) but from there goes downhill fast. The "witty bantor" between the two literally makes you wince and is completely stupid. You have to wonder what kind of weirdo the celebrity is to seek out such a religious, dumpy, boring woman for a friend. Her husband is the only one with any sense in the whole book but is a very quiet boring character as well.
The ending is beyond terrible and I had to read the last few pages again to understand what actually transpired.
Save your self the wait and find another better reviewed book to enjoy!
reviewed The Actor and the Housewife on + 7 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Have to admit I was extremely uncomfortable reading this book. At times I loved it - the author's writing style was great. But mostly I didn't like it at all. The premise just didn't work for me. And by the end of the book, I wanted to throw it across the room!
reviewed The Actor and the Housewife on + 289 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
The age-old question of whether a man and a woman can just be friends gets a deliciously whimsical twist in Shannon Hales second novel. In a follow-up to Austenland, this fantasy what-if story asks: what if hes Felix Callahan, handsome British actor with a French supermodel wife? What if shes Becky Jack, happily married Mormon housewife, mother of four, and a fan of Felixs work? Such title characters usually dont meet in real life, but when Shannon Hale asks for this suspension of disbelief, she delivers a beautiful, poignant story of love and friendship in return.

The blurb might lead you to believe it will be an escapist housewife meets her celebrity crush storyline. Instead, the fact that Felix and Becky strike up an instant friendship is as believable as the easy dialogue between them is witty. Beckys character resembles her famous zucchini bread good and wholesome, but with spunk and fiber and holds the story together. You dont begrudge that she was the lucky one who got to meet and become best mates with a celebrity heartthrob instead of yourself because you can see what about Becky captured Felixs liver (they refer to each other as such since their respective spouses represent their hearts). Rather, you grow to care about Becky and her family as she and husband Mike wrestle with the question of whether a platonic mixed gender friendship is possible.

Indeed the story progresses so seamlessly that you might not even notice the time pass as the Jack children grow up and the Becky-Felix friendship is tested by trials to both partners. Theres a lot of fun and tears along the way, but without revealing the answer to the original question, let me just say the story affirms the readers awe in the power of soul mates. Although Shannon Hale might want to establish herself as excellent author of fantasy chick lit, she does so through her talent in writing about grounded characters just authentically living life in The Actor and the Housewife.
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reviewed The Actor and the Housewife on + 37 more book reviews
I was shocked to read how many people didn't enjoy this book. I absolutely loved it! Who doesn't have a celebrity crush you'd love to meet and strike up a close friendship with? I'm happily married, so friendship would be enough for me. This was hard for me to put down. Even when I wasn't reading it, I was thinking about the characters. I am not a romances reader AT ALL, mostly mystery, so this was a little out of my lane but , I thoroughly enjoyed it.
reviewed The Actor and the Housewife on + 15 more book reviews
I love Shannon Hale's fantasies, but this book didn't really work for me, especially in the first half. The descriptions of the movie industry and the characters who were part of that world gave me the feeling the author wasn't writing about what she knew, but was instead relying on stock stereotypes. The editing was also uneven.

That said, the idea of the story was interesting, and I liked many of the Utah characters, especially Mike. The battle with cancer was poignant and the section where Becky was being wooed was very nice.
natalexx avatar reviewed The Actor and the Housewife on + 52 more book reviews
Shannon Hale is a great writer, but she's using her talent for evil with this book. This book will take you on an emotional roller coaster, and personally I did not enjoy it. I couldn't put it down in most places, it made me sob, it made me laugh, it made me depressed. And after all that, after investing completely in the characters to the point of extreme and possibly insane empathy, the ending was not cathartic at all. (I realize we usually complain about the "predictable" outcome, but in this case it would have been a relief.)

Despite it's ridiculous fantasy of a plot (please: the actor and the housewife? it gets better: he's basically Brad Pitt or Tom Cruise and she's a Mormon from Utah), this book takes the most painful of all "realistic" outcomes (the type that, yes, we all experience from time to time but optimistically hope will not become the norm) and makes you feel like even in your movie star fantasies you can't escape from them. Fun!

But take my sarcasm with a grain of salt and as the warning I intend it to be. If you enjoy Hale and are braver than me about books that toy with your emotions and refuse to give you a predictable ending, definitely give this a try. It is well-written and unique.

Book Wiki

Becky Jack (Primary Character)
Felix Callahan (Primary Character)