Someday, Someday Maybe
by Lauren Graham
Release Date: April 30th, 2013
Length: 352 pages
Obtained via: Galley from Netgalley in exchange for honest review
Format Read: egalley
It’s January 1995, and Franny Banks has just six months left of the three-year deadline she set for herself when she came to New York, dreaming of Broadway and doing “important” work. But all she has to show for her efforts so far is a part in an ad for ugly Christmas sweaters, and a gig waiting tables at a comedy club. Her roommates―her best friend Jane, and Dan, an aspiring sci-fi writer―are supportive, yet Franny knows a two-person fan club doesn’t exactly count as success. Everyone tells her she needs a backup plan, and though she can almost picture moving back home and settling down with her perfectly nice ex-boyfriend, she’s not ready to give up on her goal of having a career like her idols Diane Keaton and Meryl Streep. Not just yet. But while she dreams of filling their shoes, in the meantime, she’d happily settle for a speaking part in almost anything—and finding a hair product combination that works.
Everything is riding on the upcoming showcase for her acting class, where she’ll finally have a chance to perform for people who could actually hire her. And she can’t let herself be distracted by James Franklin, a notorious flirt and the most successful actor in her class, even though he’s suddenly started paying attention. Meanwhile, her bank account is rapidly dwindling, her father wants her to come home, and her agent doesn’t return her calls. But for some reason, she keeps believing that she just might get what she came for.
Someday, Someday, Maybe is a story about hopes and dreams, being young in a city, and wanting something deeply, madly, desperately. It’s about finding love, finding yourself, and perhaps most difficult of all in New York City, finding an acting job.
I know Lauren Graham best as Lorelei Gilmore from Gilmore Girls, my favorite TV show ever, so I was a bit nervous about reading her book. You know how some actress and singers really shouldn’t try to write? Luckily, Lauren Graham doesn’t belong in that category. By about fifteen percent in to the story, I totally forgot the reason I even heard of this book was because Lauren Graham wrote it. That fact just faded away into the story, which captivated me completely in the lights and hustle of New York and the struggles of Franny as she seeks an acting career.
Franny was a great protagonist. She was really easy to relate to: talented, but not an instant star. Not a weak heroine by any means, but also prone to despair at times. Determined, but sometimes easily persuaded by others. Smart and witty, but sometimes says stupid things. In short: Franny is a real person. A person I would like to hang out with, but a person with dreams, failures, faults, and strengths.
The plot for Someday, Someday Maybe isn’t complex or thick, but it’s enjoyable. Franny really carries the weight of the story on her back, and she does so spectacularly. I really enjoyed the New York setting and how Franny sometimes seemed to struggle against the city, trying to balance her current job and her dream job. The book is set in 1995, which gave it an almost “Friends” feel to me. That pulled me out of the story a little more than I would have liked at times, but on the whole the setting was well-done. This isn’t the type of book that will have you pondering all the tiny elements of the plot, but it’s such an enjoyable read I didn’t even care if it was in a genre I typically don’t read.
Surprisingly, my favorite part of the book was the love triangle. I’ve been feeling a bit burnt out on love triangles, but this one captivated me because both potential love interests showed a different part of Franny’s personality. In fact, there’s a bit in the book where Franny talks to one of her roommates, Dan, about love triangles, and he points out how a good writer will make a love triangle accentuate two different dimensions of the same character. It points out Franny’s struggle brilliantly, in my opinion, and it really could have gone either way, making it one of my favorite love triangles I’ve read.
Final Impression: Someday, Someday Maybe really surprised me in a good way. It wasn’t perfect, but it was fun, witty, and sweet. I began to really like Franny on her journey through acting and loved the friendships and romantic relationships presented through the novel, as they all felt genuine. This isn’t even a genre I’d normally choose to read in but I definitely want to read the finished copy. 4/5 stars.