First class is about to get dangerous . . . Pure Air’s new LuxeLiner is flying from London to LA – its inaugural journey – with a first-class cabin packed with A List celebrities. As the feuding crew compete to impress their famous passengers, the handsome pilot tries to win the attention of a pretty young stewardess.
But one VIP singer is battling something seriously sinister: watching her every step is a very determined stalker, someone who will go to any lengths to get the star to satisfy their desires. At thirty thousand feet there is nowhere to run, and nowhere to hide . . .
You know how I often say things like “perfect for your sun lounger” and “make sure this one’s in your suitcase”? Mile High by Rebecca Chance is published by Pan on 13th August in paperback and for kindle, and those phrases should have been written for it. It’s a long time since I read a really, really good bonkbuster – Greek holidays in the 70s and 80s were filled with them – and I’m really not sure why it’s taken me so long to pick up a book by Rebecca Chance. For heavens sake, friends have been telling me how good she is for ages. I thought this book was simply wonderful – totally preposterous, over the top, with so many unbelievable characters and the most ridiculous story, but such immense fun and a simply perfect read.
Most of the action takes place on the inaugural flight of Pure Air’s LuxeLiner to LA – and when I say action, I mean it in more ways than one. One of the fun parts is trying to match the many characters to the celebrities they’re based on. There’s the celebrity chef who can’t keep it in his trousers, the Oscar nominated actress, the international singing star – all with the most fascinating background stories. And then there’s the Pure Air contingent – the showman of a chairman, the highly efficient head of publicity, the philandering captain, and the wonderful crew made up of a mix of the thrusting and ambitious, the downright nasty, the naive innocents and the morally reprehensible. And the other main character is the LuxeLiner itself – described in such glorious and vivid detail, every VIP pod, walkway, barstool and blue light and napkin.
The stalker story at the book’s centre is so well done – there’s a flavour of Orient Express about this book, as you swing about wildly, suspecting absolutely everyone. And Cat at the story’s centre is a great character, surprisingly likeable, with her passionate love story, and some great insights to what it’s like to be a world superstar, on tour and at home. I loved actress Jane’s story too – a little gentler, but moving enough to bring a little tear to the eye. The book’s climax is quite wonderful – slapstick, violence and wonderful humour coming together totally perfectly.
I haven’t made enough of the humour really – this book is also very, very funny, and some of the images in this book will stay with me for a long time, with a giggle every time I think of them. And the book is also overflowing with that “lives of the rich and famous” detail that’s an absolute essential for the very best bonkbuster – everything from the labels on their clothing, what they drink, the problems of serving lobster on a luxury plane to the best brands of concealer.
Rebecca Chance, you’re wonderful – I’m now officially a fan, and your books will be an essential part of my luggage for every future holiday.
My thanks to netgalley and the publishers for my advance reading copy, and to Francesca Pearce for inviting me on the blog tour. Do visit the other stops for more great reviews…
Rebecca Chance was born in Hampstead to international art dealer parents, and grew up in the exclusive millionaire’s row surroundings of London’s St John’s Wood. Tiring of her cushioned, privileged existence, she ran away to Tuscany to live a wild bohemian life on a wine-making estate, where she lived in a 14th century villa in a Chianti vineyard, partying with artists, learning Italian, and picking grapes.
But big city life was calling her, and after staying in Rome and Porto Ercole, she moved to Manhattan, lured by the glamorous single-girl existence and nonstop nightlife. She spent a decade living the Sex and The City dream in SoHo, equally at home in an uptown penthouse on Fifth Avenue overlooking the Metropolitan Museum, or downtown dancing on the bar of the Coyote Ugly for kicks. Eventually, a handsome American husband in tow, she moved back to London to settle down (as much as she can) and finally fictionalize some of her most exciting and glamorous experiences into her bestselling blockbuster novels.
Rebecca’s interests include trapeze, pole-dancing, watching “America’s Next Top Model”, and cocktail-drinking.