In The Rock Star in Seat 3A, Jill Kargman questions whether the life we fantasize about would truly be more satisfying than the one we have. I would guess that most people wonder, at least occasionally, whether the life they have made for themselves is a result of having chosen the best or settled for less.
Hazel has what many would consider a dream life. As she celebrates her 30th birthday, she has an exciting job, good friends, and a wonderful boyfriend, Wylie, a world-class chef who is completely committed to her. But on the day after her birthday, she boards a plane and finds herself seated next to the man of her dreams, legendary rock star Finn Schiller. The same man whose name had come up just the night before when she and her friends was revealing their secret celebrity crushes, and with whom her boyfriend had joked that she could have a free pass if she ever actually met him.
This unlikely scenario becomes even more unreal when Finn becomes intrigued by Hazel and begins to pursue her, offering a taste of what the life she has fantasized about would really be like. As the story unfolds, we follow Hazel into a modern-day fairy tale where the most unlikely things can come true, but where things are also not always as they seem from the outside.
I had a mixed reaction to this book. The idea of fantasy is woven throughout the book, and I believe that imagination and dreams are a good and necessary thing in our lives. What a person chooses to do with their imagination, however, is of utmost importance, and the direction that the main character in this book goes is definitely way outside of my moral boundaries. Kargman includes a quote on fantasy at the beginning of each chapter, and my favorite of these highlights this dichotomy:
produces impossible monsters; united with it,
she is the mother of the arts and the origin of marvels.
–Francisco de Goya
If you think it might be worth risking it all to follow your heart, and you don’t mind some sex and a lot of swearing along with your rock and roll, then The Rock Star in Seat 3A is the book for you.
See what else Trish has been reading at In So Many Words.