Monday, April 6, 2015

Sraight Reading From the Library: Identity Theft by Laura Lee

This is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The author will be awarding a digital copy of her book to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.


A bored employee in a rock star's office begins an online relationship with a fan in the guise of his boss and sets off a chain of events he cannot control.

Candi Tavris is on the verge of turning 30, she works in the packaging department of a company that is downsizing and she is hounded by calls from creditors who mispronounce her name. She wakes up every morning praying that the folks at Life Lock will perform their work in reverse and give her "identity" to someone else. Her younger sister, never a serious student, married a rich executive and lives in a mansion.

Candi's only solace is escaping into the music and image of the 80s pop star Blast.

Ethan Penn, a 22 year-old college dropout who smokes pot and lives in his mother's basement, works in the rock star's office. (His desk sits under a framed gold record with a dead spider caught in the glass.)

His boss, whose real name is Ollie Thomas, is as socially awkward off stage as he is charismatic on stage. He is depressed about his pending divorce. His greatest fame is behind him, his biggest hit "Partly Cloudy Thursday (Blast With Me)" was a cliched monstrosity written to please record executives. His rock n' roll lifestyle mostly consists of finding ways to keep his laundry from stinking while on the road and trying to remain anonymous while buying Preparation-H.

Blast assigns the task of keeping up with his social networking to Ethan. Ethan starts to correspond with Candi through e-mail and chats in the guise of the rock star. The conversation soon becomes steamy. The game spirals out of control when Blast performs a concert in Candi's hometown and Candi is mistaken first for a groupie and then for a delusional stalker.

Candi must try to prove (and retain) her sanity. Ethan must decide whether to risk jail by telling the truth. A terrified Ollie has to come to terms with his relationship with his Blast character and the consequences of his fame.


Identity Theft deals not with identity theft as we know it, but the psychological implications of identity. How much of our identity is wrapped up in how other people see us? This is one of the issues examined in this quirky book by Laura Lee.

The story is told from the points of view of three characters: Candi, who finds herself in debt and working for a company that is downsizing - her escape from her problems being a near obsessive compulsion with the 1980s rock star, Blast; Ethan, who works for Blast in the office doing everything nobody else wants to do; and Ollie Thomas, whose onstage persona Blast is definitely not who he really is.

One simple decision sets the course of these three people on a collision course that is unavoidable and the book revolves around what happens to these characters over the course of several months and how the "theft" of one person's identity affects them all.

Ms. Lee does a great job on the characters. It was always very clear who was being featured. There is no "villain" in this story, per se. Even Ethan, who is the catalyst that sets everything in motion, is not unlikable-- he's a bit of a loser, but he's a likable loser. And, he grows a lot during the course of the book.

In fact, all of the characters grow and change as a result of their interaction with each other.

Identity Theft is a very enjoyable book and one that does not follow a predictable formula. It was an easy read at under 300 pages. 4 stars


Metro Detroit native Laura Lee divides her time equally between writing and producing ballet educational tours with her partner, the artistic director of the Russian National Ballet Foundation. She is the author of more than a dozen non-fiction books with such publishers as Harper Collins, Reader’s Digest, Running Press, Broadway Books, Lyons Press and Black Dog and Leventhal. Her Pocket Encyclopedia of Aggravation has sold more than 85,000 copies. She has also written two collections of poetry, and a children’s book (A Child’s Introduction to Ballet). She brings to her writing a unique background as a radio announcer, improvisational comic and one-time professional mime.

The San Francisco Chronicle has said of her work, “Lee’s dry, humorous tone makes her a charming companion… She has a penchant for wordplay that is irresistible.”

Angel is her first novel.

Read more about the book at


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  1. The impressive cover is what I like best from today’s post.

  2. I really enjoyed the blurb and the review! Thank you!