A Starlet's Secret to a Sensational Afterlife (Hardcover)

A Starlet's Secret to a Sensational Afterlife By Kendall Kulper Cover Image
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A budding starlet and her handsome-but-moody co-star go from bitter enemies to reluctant partners when they get tangled up in the disappearance of a beautiful young actress in 1930s Hollywood.

Eighteen-year-old Henrietta arrives in Los Angeles in 1934 with dreams of trading her boring life for stardom. 

She’s determined to make it as an actress, despite her family’s doubts and rumors of would-be starlets gone missing. And by the skin of her teeth, she pulls it off! A serendipitous job offer arrives and Henrietta finds herself on a whirlwind publicity tour for a major film role—with a vexingly unpleasant actor tapped by the studio to be her fake boyfriend.

But fierce Henrietta has more in common with brooding Declan than she realizes. They both have gifts that they are hiding, for fear of being labeled strange: he is immune to injury and she can speak to ghosts. When the co-stars get tangled up in the disappearance of a beautiful young actress, they go from bitter enemies and pretend lovers to reluctant partners—and possibly even friends.

Together, they might be the only people in Hollywood who can do something about these poor missing girls. And in doing so . . . they might just fall in love for real.

This whip smart, seductive caper by the author of Murder for the Modern Girl has the perfect combination of romance, vengeance, and a hint of the supernatural, set in the Golden Age of Hollywood. Hand to fans of These Violent Delights and My Lady Jane.

A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

About the Author

Kendall Kulper is an author living in Cambridge, MA. She writes historical fantasy for young adult readers, including Murder for the Modern Girl (JLG Selection), Salt & Storm (YALSA Best Books for Young Adults, JLG Selection) and Drift & Dagger (JLG Selection). She graduated from Harvard University with an honors degree in History & Literature and lives with her husband, two daughters, and much-Instagrammed dog, Abby. Visit her online at kendallkulper.com and @kendallkulper

Praise For…

★ "A riveting and suspenseful exploration of the dark, gritty side of 1930s Hollywood. . . . [A] genre-crossing mystery, which has elements of fantasy, romance, and historical fiction."—Shelf Awareness, Starred Review

"This fast-paced mystery twists and turns, providing snippets of real 1934 history to bring the story to life. . . . the snappy dialogue and a humdinger of a final plot twist offer a satisfying read. . . . An exciting ­addition to any high school mystery or historical fiction collection."—School Library Journal

"Kulper returns with another gripping mystery novel that also features romance and action among the glitz and glamour of 1930s Hollywood. Readers will find familiar themes of harassment in Hollywood, hearkening to modern-day issues such as the #MeToo movement. The mystery component keeps the pages turning as the two main characters grow closer and work toward a resolution."—Booklist

"An engrossing supernatural murder mystery and a fierce ode to feminism."—BookPage

"Kulper delivers an action-packed mystery replete with witty dialogue and buoyed by an ardent, slow-burn romance that enthralls while spotlighting Hollywood’s long history of abusing, commodifying, and discarding women."Publishers Weekly

"Full of high-stakes tension, this exploration of what happens when powerful men don’t get what they want will resonate with ongoing conversations about women’s vulnerability in the entertainment industry. Refreshingly, Henny is no damsel in distress, and the simmering enemies-to-lovers romance with Declan, whose hard exterior disguises a heart of gold, is rewarding. . . . An atmospheric page-turner with real-world resonance."—Kirkus Reviews

"Kulper’s follow-up to Murder for the Modern Girl (BCCB 5/22) delivers the same gritty world-building. . . . Henny follows in Ruby’s footsteps as another confident, savvy heroine. . . . Henny and Declan’s sharp, funny banter and earnest chemistry provide the heart and spine throughout the gruesome mysteries and supernatural thrills of another superb novel from Kulper."—The Bulletin for the Center of Children’s Books
Product Details
ISBN: 9780823453610
ISBN-10: 0823453618
Publisher: Holiday House
Publication Date: May 23rd, 2023
Pages: 352
Language: English