I just finished the novel (chick lit, actually) The Year of Living Famously by Laura Caldwell, and I must say that it successfully lifted me out of my bland life.

It's about a struggling New York fashion designer who works temp jobs, and while she's pursuing her dream, she meets a struggling actor who ends up being famous. It doesn't sound like deep literature, and it's not. It's just a fun read.

I don't know why I like to read fiction that is simply entertaining, because the non-fiction books, magazines, websites, and even blogs that I read aren't fluffy, and I don't have a frivolous personality. But if a book successfully shows me a subculture of the U.S. or another culture, and has a story that moves along, it's enough for me.

If you've never met Laura Caldwell, you should. I met her this summer at the Printers Row Book Fair, and she is one of the friendliest and most helpful people I've ever met. Considering she's a successful writer (four novels and a couple of upcoming ones), she's really nice. She's going to appear at various locations in Chicagoland and elsewhere.

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