Franny Banks lives in a New York brownstone with roommates Jane, her best friend, and Dan, an wannabe science fiction writer. Franny had given herself a three-year deadline: either she "makes it" on Broadway, or she moves back home to marry her old boyfriend Clark. There are only six months remaining before her time is up, and the only role she has is a commercial for Christmas sweaters.
Her last hope is to do really well in the showcase for her acting class, so that she gets signed by an agent. Meanwhile, she's waiting tables at a comedy club and trying not to freak out.
Lauren Graham's debut novel is inspired by the early days of her career, living in a New York brownstone and waitressing in a comedy club. But she insists the book is not autobiographical, that
"I was so not interested in writing any kind of tell-all. If I wanted to do that, I would have just written a memoir and probably sold more copies."It's an enjoyable read, well-written and witty. Franny's narrative is strewn with pages from her Filofax, filled with doodles and encouraging notes to herself, which adds a real sense of authenticity to the story. Franny is an engaging protagonist, talented, but insecure and easy to empathize with.
Below is a radio interview Graham recently did with Leonard Lopate on WNYC radio. It's almost twenty minutes long, but it's definitely worth listening to.
FTC Full Disclosure: Many thanks to the publisher and Edelweiss for the e-galley.