Starlet's Light

The Starlet Series, #3

Young Adult - Action
296 Pages
Reviewed on 02/04/2014
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Carla J. Hanna is the author of award-winning young adult romance and coming of age fiction novels for readers who enjoyed Nicholas Sparks' A Walk to Remember, Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love, Gayle Forman's If I Stay, or John Green's The Fault in Our Stars.
A former housewife of Santa Monica, California, Ms. Hanna shares an insider's perspective on Hollywood and celebrity influence in her multicultural novels. These are not steamy novels; they are realistic contemporary stories that examine the cultural clash between Hollywood values and religious morality.
Mrs. Hanna urges her readers to take control of the messages about sexuality, youthfulness, and beauty coming from Hollywood and stand up for their own personal convictions rather than follow the social media herd. As the entertainment business's consumers, we have the power to change the messages that affect our sense of self and the actions of our children. Help be the change.
Starlet's Man - Lights, Camera, and Lies. High school student athlete, Manny Biro, is caught between the boy he should be and the man he wants to become.
Starlet's Web - Hollywood entangles talented teen actress in a web of lies.
Starlet's Run - In a world where an actress is a product and everyone is a critic, can young love survive? Should it?
Starlet's Light - Young Hollywood actress is 'so done' with acting. She gives up the fight until she sees the light.
~ STARLET'S WEB GOLD MEDAL: 2014 Readers' Favorite International Book Award Contest: Christian Romance ~
~ STARLET'S LIGHT SILVER MEDAL: 2014 Readers' Favorite International Book Award Contest: Christian Romance ~
~ STARLET'S WEB GOLD MEDAL WINNER: 2013 AUTHORdb Book Cover Contest! ~
~ STARLET'S WEB WINNER: January 21, 2013 IBD AWARD! ~
~ STARLET'S WEB FINALIST: 2014 Readers' Favorite International Book Award Contest in 3 categories: Young Adult: coming of age; Fiction: cultural; and Romance: Christian ~

    Book Review

Reviewed by Bil Howard for Readers' Favorite

Facing who you truly are and what meaning your life has is never easy, but it is even more difficult when you’re an actress. Truth and lies get woven together in Starlet’s Light by Carla J. Hanna and sorting them out is a painful experience for cancer survivor and actress Liana Marie. Dishonesty and mistrust on the silver screen are multiplied in Liana’s life as she struggles to decide who and what to trust. While shooting in England, Liana decides to set Manuel free, realizing that he has a chance for a normal, happy life without her, though she can’t get him out of her mind. With an understanding of how her past has affected her future, thanks to her father, she begins to move forward in a whole new light, haunted by the decision to let Manuel go. Spending her weekends in the hospital, rather than out having fun with her friends and doing what normal people do on weekends, begins to take its toll and she begins to see through some of the drama in her life. Will love, trust, and commitment find her? Will she continue to be swept up in the lies that surround her?

Starlet’s Light takes a deeper look into the things that are manufactured not only for a Hollywood movie, but those that are manufactured in our lives. Carla J. Hanna does an excellent job of showing how a person navigates the paths of their falsehoods in an attempt to justify them, but always seems to come up short. The depth of thought and emotion becomes all too real for the reader and keeps them hooked as Carla unravels the story. Deep, emotional and thought provoking, Starlet’s Light will have you examining where the paths of your own life are leading you.

Kathryn Bennett

In Starlet's Light (The Starlet Series, #3) by Carla J. Hanna, Liana is a cancer survivor who is struggling with commitment and trust, like so many of us, but her issues are so deep that she really does not see how they shape the roles she plays. How will she come out in the end?

I eagerly delved back into the life of Liana to see what she would find out and get into this time. Watching her struggle in the second book, I thought we would see some more of those struggles with the third installment, but I also hoped for more growth. I was not disappointed. Once again, Carla J. Hanna has written an elegantly engaging book that I didn’t want to put down. I am not sure if it is because I am sometimes fascinated with Hollywood culture or because I enjoy a journey of a character or both. Liana has had too many different things come into her world and choices to make. She does not always make the best choice; sometimes she is shallow, but we follow her choices and watch her grow just like any of us. Who among us has not made a choice over love? Life? Work? One that we later learn to regret.

While Starlet's Light is a Young Adult book, I think it appeals to adults, too. I know as an adult I really enjoyed it as much as I did the rest of the season. Carla J. Hanna is one of those rare writers who not only creates a good story, but puts it beautifully into words.

Mamta Madhavan

Starlet's Light (The Starlet Series, #3) by Carla J. Hanna is the third book in the Starlet series. Liana Marie Michael is a cancer survivor who is slowly dying. This series speaks about the mistakes she makes in choosing her love. She leaves her true love, Manuel, and spends a lot of time with Pierre, a Swiss billionaire. Though she is with Pierre, she misses Manuel every single day. She realizes that the drama in the movies also spills into their real lives. She brings to light the Hollywood lifestyle, the dramas and the deceit that comes with being an actress.

The story is a revelation of Liana's confused mental state, her insecurities, and the twists and turns which finally open her mind and change her outlook on life and the incidents in her life. The story is synonymous with the life of celebrities. It has powerful messages of love and forgiveness. The book takes us through a multitude of emotional upheavals - love, lies, betrayal, and pain, it is all there for those looking for drama in the story. Her parents, the love of her life, and the plot twists make it seem more like a movie than a real life story because there are all the ingredients of a Hollywood movie: drama, love, and emotions.

There is a lot of movement happening in the story, which makes it fast paced. The narration is breezy and the characters are developed well as the story progresses. Will Liana be able to get out of the web she is caught in and lead a normal life?

Faridah Nassozi

Starlet's Light by Carla J. Hanna is the third book in the Starlet Series, the memoirs of a fictitious Hollywood character. Liana Marie continues with her struggle of balancing her personal and professional life and living with a terminal illness. At the end of book 2, she travels to a movie set, leaving the love of her life, Manuel, behind. She is strongly attracted to her co-star and struggling to stay faithful to Manuel. The situation is made worse when she meets her email friend Pierre, son to her doctor and a cancer survivor like her who has been her rock during recovery, and realizes that she is love with him. She contemplates breaking up with Manuel, but she is not sure whether being with Pierre is the right thing to do.

Starlet's Light by Carla J. Hanna is a moving story of a girl struggling to come to terms with the fact that she is living with a terminal disease. Liana is no ordinary teenager and no ordinary Hollywood star either. The book shows her willingness to fight against all odds and how having a strong support system of family and friends helps her go through the worst times. The novel is sad, happy, and inspirational all at the same time. Liana is such a lovely girl that even when she made some wrong decisions I could not bring myself to hate her, but instead I understood the pain she was going through and why she made such decisions. Starlet's Light is a captivating story and I cannot wait for book 4 to come out.

Danielle Pinzon

Starlet's Light is the final book to Carla J. Hanna's Starlet Series and continues Lia's journey. Diagnosed with Congenital Heart Failure (CHF) as a result of using a dangerous drug for most of her teen years, Lia is now in the middle of dealing with her disease while trying to keep her love for her fiancé intact. But months shooting on set doesn't make it easier for their relationship and when Lia's email buddy turned best friend meets up with her in her shoot, sparks fly and Lia begins to question what's best for Manuel and how she should live the rest of her life. What follows is the culmination of her journey, as she asks questions about love, healing, and spirituality, and discovers that even when you're hurting and lost, you don't have to go through things alone.

I enjoyed this last book of the Starlet series. Reading all three, I was really able to see how Liana Marie matured, and the way her thoughts changed from being those of a lost seventeen-year-old to an adult. Though she's always been described as mature in the book, the way she is written and the way she goes through her decisions shows her age, and that's definitely all right. I love how Hanna writes the characters making decisions, and not necessarily good ones, which definitely shows the selfishness of human nature at times. Her male characters are a bit too perfect at times, but that's okay as this is a YA novel. Add also that the male characters' decisions were often misguided and that made up for it as well. The thing I like most about this last book is that there is definitely no antagonist, no corporeal character you can blame the good guy's miseries on. Instead, you have the inner conflict and the struggle to find the right path, which is a good thing for this genre as many teenagers often feel lost and without anybody to help. This book is definitely a delight and an inspiration to read!