I am super excited to have the very awesome/scandalous/notorious Pagan Jones on the blog today for THE NOTORIOUS PAGAN JONES Blog Tour with a guest post by the character “On Being Notorious.” When I first heard of Author Nina Berry’s book I couldn’t wait to order a copy, and I devoured it the moment it landed on my Kindle.
If you haven’t yet heard of this fantastic book, there’s some information about it below the guest post. But as I thought you might like to get to know Pagan Jones just a little bit first, her post immediately follows.
This tour stop includes a chance to win a copy of the book. So if you don’t yet have one in your collection, enter in the Rafflecopter.
And if you’d like to check out other guest posts and interviews, be sure to check out the schedule. Each stop offers a chance to win.
The Guest Post
On Being Notorious
By Pagan Jones
I didn’t choose to be famous. But you could say that I chose to be infamous.
I don’t recommend it.
The fame was Mama’s doing. She had it planned before I was born. I started baby modeling as, well, a baby, and from there it was diction, dancing, singing, and acting classes in between auditions and being tutored on set. If I hadn’t been cast in The Littlest Outlaw, Mama would probably have kidnapped poor Walt Disney and tied him to a chair until he said yes. You didn’t say no to Mama. Not for long.
So I grew up with the cameras and the sugary, staged interviews with me in some furbelowed white dress and a pink bow in my hair. Mama was always at my side, making sure I answered the questions the way we’d rehearsed. There were times when it was truly fun, and times when I felt completely suffocated.
So it’s not surprising I got lost after Mama killed herself. It’s as if one minute you’re in the back seat, strapped in tight, hands in your lap, with the world’s bossiest driver at the wheel, and the next you’re walking all alone through the woods at night, and the wolves are howling. Sleep became a stranger, so I’d sneak around the house at night, poking into Mama’s sewing box or thumbing through her annotated scripts looking for any scrap of her that might be left in the world, waiting to hear her voice call me into the kitchen one last time.
One night I found the vodka in the sliding cabinet behind the bar. I remembered Mama asking Daddy to make her a martini with it, so I drank it down. It bit my tongue and blazed a trail down my throat like a shooting star. I tottered up to bed and slept like the dead for the first time in ages. From then on I had a sip or three of vodka nearly every night.
And it was vodka I drank on my sixteenth birthday. I toasted my new cherry red convertible Corvette with a martini, then took Daddy and my sister for a ride. I didn’t plan to become notorious that night, but I made the choice to have that drink and then drive. I swerved too hard, the car went off the cliff at Mulholland Drive. Somehow I survived. Daddy and Ava did not.
So I’ve earned my notoriety. I deserve the distrust and the dirty looks. They still hurt, but Mama trained me to act so well that nobody can tell.
When you’re famous, people think they know you, so they feel free to judge you, to give you advice, to smile at you and ask impertinent questions. You’re their little sister, or their girlfriend, or their daughter who “really should’ve played Maria in West Side Story even though you’re blonde.”
But when you’re notorious, people know you all too well. You’re the criminal, and they’re judge, jury, and executioner. Every look that comes your way screams: “Why are you here when you should be so ashamed and so very very dead?”
After you become notorious, if you’re going to keep on acting and living and maybe even being happy once in awhile, you develop invisible armor. You’re Joan of Arc at the battlements, saving France. Everyone else is the English. You’re Scarlett O’Hara, and the rest of the world is a clutch of unfashionable biddies whispering nasty things about you behind their hands even as they covet your fabulous dress.
You have to be. Or you’ll go mad from the shame of it. You’ll start drinking again, and then you’ll turn back into that girl you hate. The one that chose to drink and drive. The one who deserves every nasty word, every disdainful glance.
So, as Mama said, keep your shoulders back, head high. Fool them into thinking you’re confident and one day you may believe it too.
Just remember: lie to everyone else if you must. Never lie to yourself.
About THE NOTORIOUS PAGAN JONES
Title: THE NOTORIOUS PAGAN JONES
Author: Nina Berry
Release date: May 26, 2015
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook
Pagan Jones went from America’s Sweetheart to fallen angel in one fateful night in 1960: the night she accidentally killed her family in a drunk driving accident. Nine months later, she’s stuck in the Lighthouse Reformatory for Wayward Girls and tortured by her guilt—not to mention the sadistic Miss Edwards, who takes special delight in humiliating the once-great Hollywood actress.
But when Pagan’s Hollywood agent arrives at her reform school with a mysterious studio executive Devin Black, Pagan must decide if she can stay sober – while shooting a new comedy with award-winning director Bennie Wexler in war-torn Berlin just as the Wall is going up. All the while, her ex-boyfriend shows up in Berlin with his new wife – a Pagan Jones lookalike. Will she run into him? What will she say? Ultimately, Berlin is her chance at redemption: both personally and professionally.
With a court-appointed guardian, her every move scrutinized, and her recovery still in question, can she pull herself together, rescue her co-star and re-win the hearts of the American public?
About Nina Berry
Nina Berry has been working in Hollywood for years, and is no stranger to the glitz and glamour of movie and TV sets. She took her love of old movies, her knowledge from her day job as well as a heartbreaking personal story of the loss of a friend who succumbed to alcoholism to create the world of THE NOTORIOUS PAGAN JONES.
Courtesy of Harlequin Teen, each stop on the tour will be offering up a copy of THE NOTORIOUS PAGAN JONES, so be sure and follow along for more guest posts, interviews and chances to win!
Enter in the Rafflecopter…
The Tour Schedule
- Monday, July 20th | Reading Lark – Inteview
- Wednesday, July 22nd | Bookish Lifestyle – Guest Post
- Friday, July 24th | Actin’ Up with Books – Interview