Books are food for my soul! Pull up a beach chair and stick your toes in the sand as the Jersey surf rolls in and out, now open your book and let your imagination take you away.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Showbiz by Ruby Preston (Author Guest Post / Book Review)

In association with Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours, Jersey Girl Book Reviews welcomes Ruby Preston, author of Showbiz!

Author Guest Post

The Broadway You Never Knew
By Ruby Preston

If you’ve ever seen a musical, you know about the fabulous singing and dancing that you can expect to find on stage. But what you might not know is the drama that you don’t see. What’s really happening behind the scenes? Showbiz, rooted firmly in my personal journey to Broadway is out of necessity, a work of fiction. With names changed and situations adapted, I was able to include some of my juiciest behind the scenes Broadway stories through the adventures of my smart and sassy heroine, Scarlett Savoy.

Scarlett’s nightmare of a boss, fledgling romance, and musical theater projects may be just shy of the actual facts, but within her drama, the truth about show business is very much revealed.

To whet your appetite for the book, here are 3 things you might not know about Broadway:

#1 Once it’s written, a new musical takes, on average, 5 to 7 years to get to Broadway. If you write a musical, you’d better be up for a long haul.

#2 In the Times Square area, the only thing that differentiates a Broadway theater from an Off-Broadway theater is the number of seats.

#3 The average musical costs $2 million dollars A MONTH to run on Broadway. Half of that cost is theater rent alone and the rest is due primarily to union wage minimums. That’s a heck of a lot of tickets to sell each month to stay in business and explains the high ticket prices!

Now you can impress your friends with a little Broadway trivia. But I should be getting back to work... if you find yourself visiting Broadway, look for me at the theater!

About The Author:

Ruby Preston is an up and coming Broadway producer currently working on several new musicals on the Great White Way. She couldn’t be more thrilled to be living her dreams in the Times Square trenches of Manhattan. Ruby loves hearing from readers and Broadway fans so feel free to drop her note via email: or Twitter.

Ruby Preston's Showbiz Virtual Book Tour Page On Chick Lit Plus

Showbiz Book Trailer

Book Review

Showbiz by Ruby Preston
Published By: Dress Circle Publishing
Publication Date: April 16, 2012
Format: Paperback - 244 pages / Kindle - 437 KB / Nook - 667 KB
ISBN: 0985471816
Genre: Chick Lit / Women's Fiction / Cozy Mystery


Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book tour event hosted by Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours.

Book Description:

After four years in Manhattan, slaving away as the under-appreciated apprentice to the brilliant but ruthless “King of Broadway,” Scarlett Savoy is finally on her way to becoming a Broadway producer in her own right. A chance meeting with an influential gossip columnist sparks romance – but can he be trusted? A shocking suicide turns Broadway on its head and Scarlett finds herself at the center of the storm as everything she thought she knew about the business of Broadway begins to unravel.

Book Excerpt:

The usual cacophony of Broadway gossip and gleeful skewering of the latest shows at the popular hot spot, Joe Allen, went suddenly quiet. Scarlett, who had just moments before snagged the last free bar stool, craned her head to see the one small TV screen that had caught everyone’s attention.

“Long-time New York Banner chief theater critic Ken Kanter was found dead in his townhouse this evening. The often-maligned journalist appears to have taken his own life.”

Scarlett could hear gasps and, uncharitably but not surprisingly, some giggles. She exchanged surprised glances with a couple of other regulars perched further down the bar. As theater critics went, Kanter was famous for how quickly he could close a Broadway show with a few choice words, a dubious honor that previously had been held by his predecessors. It seemed that with each generation of critics, the nastiness-bar was elevated, and Kanter had certainly taken it to new heights.

Scarlett spun on her barstool to watch the reactions as the news of Kanter’s death rippled through the dining room. The industry players were easily identified by their frantic texting, phone calling, and looks of wide eyed disbelief; while tourists continued their pre-show meals, blithely unaware that Broadway, as well as the world’s leading newspaper, had just experienced a seismic shift.

Scarlett's cell phone buzzed on the bar.

Where are you? A text from her boss, Mr. Margolies: an old-school legend in the industry that hadn’t adapted to modern-day sexual-harassment laws but had figured out how to use text messaging to keep Scarlett at his beck and call. She regretted that she hadn’t had time to order her usual drink. She had a feeling she was going to need it. Too late. She hopped off the stool with one last glance at the TV for any updates, but the news cycle had moved on.

Scarlett buttoned up her zebra-print coat and walked up the steps to the street and into the freezing February evening. Pushing her way through the pre-theater crowds, it took only minutes for Scarlett to walk the few blocks to her office in the prestigious, if non-descript, building, above her other favorite post-work haunt, Sardi’s, on 44th and Broadway. Even after four years on the job, she never failed to get a thrill when she walked through the doors of her Broadway office building, where many a theater legend had walked before. If you can make it here... she often thought to herself.

My Book Review:

"Come on along and listen to ... The lullaby of Broadway. The hip hooray and bally hoo ... The lullaby of Broadway." - Lullaby of Broadway from the hit Broadway Musical 42nd Street.

For the past four years, Scarlett Savoy has been the assistant producer for top Broadway producer Margolies, aka the "King of Broadway." She's been honing her skills and slaving away for a ruthless boss that will do anything to stay on top. Ready to spread her wings, Ruby gets her first shot at producing an off-Broadway show at the same time that Margolies announces the production of his biggest blockbuster project on Broadway. When a theater critic commits suicide and leaves behind secrets that could blow the industry wide open, Ruby meets Reilly Mitchell, a handsome theater gossip columnist whose in line for taking over the theater critic's position. Sparks fly between Ruby and Reilly, but is their relationship real, or is Reilly really just interested in finding out the insider secrets from Ruby? With trade secrets, backstabbing, complicated relationships, and a suicide ... this fascinating fictionalized insiders look behind the curtains of the glitter and mystique that is Broadway will have you singing "There's no business, like show business" ... where "anything goes" on Broadway!

Showbiz is an entertaining behind the scenes insiders look at the mystique that is Broadway. Written in the third person narrative, the author weaves a fascinating tale of the inner workings of NY's famed musical theater industry. With enough glitter, glitz, drama, hype, inflated egos, power struggles, schmoozing, and everything Broadway, the reader is transported to the Great White Way with premium orchestra seats to be entertained by an intriguing cast of characters. The cast of characters are engaging and realistic, their flamboyant personalities, larger than life egos, and humorous dialogues and interactions make the story a thoroughly entertaining read. I loved all the characters, their quirky ways and juicy drama kept me engaged and wanting more.

I loved how the chapters are set as scenes, that is a masterful creative style of writing that stays true to the musical theater that is a part of the author's real life profession. Rich in detail and vivid descriptions of the inner workings of the production of the musical theater industry, the insights that the author provides completely satisfied my curiosity.

This page turner of a story will keep you tapping your toes and humming along to famed Broadway musical lyrics as you sit on the edge of your seat guessing at what could possibly happen next. As a fan of Broadway musicals, I have had the pleasure of attending many of the hit shows, and for me, this story pulls out all the stops and provides the excitement and entertainment that is simply Broadway.



  1. Replies
    1. Hi Samantha! Thank you for the opportunity to read, review and host this virtual book tour event. I loved the book too, so much fun reading about the behind the scenes about Broadway. :)