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My Own Personal Soap Opera: Looking for reality in all the wrong places    by Libby Malin order for
My Own Personal Soap Opera
by Libby Malin
Order:  USA  Can
Sourcebooks, 2010 (2010)
*   Reviewed by Joan Burton

Frankie McNally is a writer for the soap opera, Lust For Life. The longest running soap, it is currently sitting with the lowest ratings. Frankie uses the show to work out her problems, finding it very therapeutic. Her mother is her biggest fan and is always calling Frankie with ideas for new and upcoming story lines.

Because of poor ratings, management has called in Victor Pendergrast, a wealthy business man, who pays for advertising for the show. Victor's elderly Aunt Gussie enjoys the show and does not want it taken off the air. Battling with dementia, Aunt Gussie sometimes confuses make believe with reality.

Frankie feels her position threatened with Victor working on the show, and soon they clash over characters and plot lines. The leading male, Luke Blades, is the show hottie, but has broken his leg, and now they must work around it. Rumours run that Luke could be replaced, but Aunt Gussie has a special place in her heart for Luke and refuses to think another actor could replace him.

Now news breaks that a thief is using the same method of operation as one of the storylines in Lust. The thief breaks into apartments, stealing jewelry and leaving a single rose as he leaves. Frankie and Victor must decide if they should stop production on this storyline to defuse the real thief, or keep going with the intention of laying the ground work for a trap.

Torn between feelings for the leading man and an attraction to Victor, Frankie must decide if her feelings are make believe or the real thing. My Own Personal Soap Opera is told with plenty of humour but the storyline is disjointed and the plot lacks depth.

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