The Body Double
A dark, glittering debut novel, The Body Double is the suspenseful story of a young woman who is recruited by a stranger to give up her old life and identity to impersonate a reclusive Hollywood star.A strange man discovers our nameless narrator selling popcorn at a decrepit small-town movie theater and offers her an odd and lucrative position: she will forget her job, her acquaintances, even her name, and move to Los Angeles, where she will become the body double of the famous and troubled celebrity Rosanna Feld. A nervous breakdown has forced Rosanna out of the public eye, and she needs a look-alike to take her place in the tabloid media circus of Hollywood. Overseen by Max, who hired her for the job, our narrator spends her days locked up in a small apartment in the hills watching hidden camera footage of Rosanna, wearing Rosanna's clothes, eating the food Rosanna likes, practicing her mannerisms, learning to become Rosanna in every way. But as she makes her public debut as Rosanna, dining at elegant restaurants, shopping in stylish boutiques, and finally risking a dinner party with Rosanna's true inner circle, alarming questions begin to arise. What really caused Rosanna's mental collapse? Will she ever return? And is Max truly her ally, or something more sinister? With echoes of Hitchcock's Vertigo, The Body Double is a fabulously plotted noir about fame, beauty, and the darkness of Hollywood.

The Body Double Details

TitleThe Body Double
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseMar 3rd, 2020
PublisherDoubleday Books
ISBN-139780385545273
Rating
GenreFiction, Thriller, Mystery, Mystery Thriller, Suspense

The Body Double Review

  • Dita
    January 1, 1970
    It wasn't my favorite; the pacing was odd and while the premise was fantastic, I found most of the characters, particularly our unnamed protagonist difficult to invest in in any meaningful way.Shades of Hitchcock but not quite enough and I predicted the "surprise" which is always a let-down.Thank you very much to Emily Beyda, Doubleday Books and NetGalley for giving me the chance to read and review this ARC.
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  • Nilufer Ozmekik
    January 1, 1970
    Three, no, this is not the book I dreamed to dive into, the plot was intriguing, the beginning was interesting, but then all slowness no play made me dull and axe carrying Jack Torrence kind of disturbed person because I’m so bored to death stars!!!!When I start reading this book I asked myself these questions: Do you like Almodovar’s movie “Skin I live” based on Thieery Jonquet’s “Tarantula” novel? YES!What about Hitchcock’s “Suspicion”, “Vertigo” and “Rebecca”? Are you kidding me, hell YES!Do Three, no, this is not the book I dreamed to dive into, the plot was intriguing, the beginning was interesting, but then all slowness no play made me dull and axe carrying Jack Torrence kind of disturbed person because I’m so bored to death stars!!!!When I start reading this book I asked myself these questions: Do you like Almodovar’s movie “Skin I live” based on Thieery Jonquet’s “Tarantula” novel? YES!What about Hitchcock’s “Suspicion”, “Vertigo” and “Rebecca”? Are you kidding me, hell YES!Do you fan of classics like “Bride of Frankenstein” and “Sunset Boulevard”? Let’s consider I didn’t ask myself this because I want to scream : “YESSSS!”You may find small pieces of all these amazing projects inside this book; some of them as a big portion and some of them as small crumbles.It’s claustrophobic, disturbing, giving you headache, bad stomach, heaves, depression, frustration and finally you want to throw the book against the wall and scream: “ENOUGH” because its slow burn, its merciless, savage tone and two characters who are suffering from OCD made you run out of patience. You started to think, those insane couple are created for each other like Kanye and Kim( they look like an angel comparing with these two characters) or Johnny Depp and Amber Heard ( Okay they’re equally bad like them). A young woman accepts a job willing being a double of Hollywood star Rosanna by losing her whole identity, leaving her past, forgetting her likes, dislikes, dreams, opinions. She was so ready to forget her own name. Max, who hired her, encouraged her, tortured her to become a real Rosanna with EXTREME METHODS: Locking her up in a house, only activities are reading magazines about Rosanna or watching the parrots from her window, forcing her smoking and drinking diet coke ( for having bad skin and looking as older as Rosanna! WTF! Yes that’s the f*ck!), over exaggerated exercise program and vegan diet with ultra- small portions, letting the butcher doctor destroy her face (this may be called plastic surgery, but still…) The methods got more extreme, the characters started to make more miserable each other. I knew that our heroine had no friends, no close family members or proper job before. So I can empathize her decision to leave her old life behind and start from the fresh but doing this by stealing somebody’s identity and being obsessive about it by losing rest of her marbles, well sorry but we have batshit crazy heroine and sadistic, unpredictable, arrogant Max ( Please don’t push me to call him “hero”, he is just a very bad guy. Worse than Billie Eilish’s song defined.)! I happily announce that: THE MOST HATED, UNLIKABLE, IRRITATING CHARACTERS AWARD goes to… YES, OUR CHARACTERS gathered all the statues! Let’s congratulate them.As a summary, why this book irritated me so much:1) Extreme slow-burn thrilling: You may foresee the biggest secret and revelation. You don’t need to read extra 200 pages!2) Unlikable, detesting characters with psychological disorders.3) Lack of wittiness, expected, foreseeable, repeating itself!4) References inspired this book are amazing but the slow pacing and lack of curiosity killed all these wonderful elements and wasted all potential!5) It reminded me a theater play more than a book. Long, slow, psychologically exhausting chapters, mostly one location oriented story-telling and whole book centered between two characters. Let’s call it “BORRRRINNGGG!”So yes, I was so excited to read this book but it was really above my expectations. I’m keen on reading debut authors and meet with their fresh perspective but this book failed me.Thank you so much NetGalley and Doubleday for sharing this ARC COPY in exchange my honest review.bloginstagramfacebooktwitter
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  • Carol (Bookaria)
    January 1, 1970
    A girl is hired to serve as a celebrity's double in the public eye. And a girl has no name. She is taken to LA, trained to become Rosanna (the celebrity) and eventually starts making public appearances as her.  The book is narrated from the point of view of the nameless double and it is slow paced. The novel does not have a lot of dialogue and, at times, there were 4-5 pages describing the thoughts of the nameless narrator, a lot of instropetion, and not much interaction with other characters or A girl is hired to serve as a celebrity's double in the public eye. And a girl has no name. She is taken to LA, trained to become Rosanna (the celebrity) and eventually starts making public appearances as her.  The book is narrated from the point of view of the nameless double and it is slow paced. The novel does not have a lot of dialogue and, at times, there were 4-5 pages describing the thoughts of the nameless narrator, a lot of instropetion, and not much interaction with other characters or events to advance the plot.You might be able to predict what is going on here at the beginning of the novel, it is not hard to figure it out.  Overall, it was ok.ARC provided by Publisher via Netgalley
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  • Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)
    January 1, 1970
    An unnamed woman has the chance to leave her dull existence as a movie theater employee in a small town for the unique opportunity to move to L.A. and work as the body double for the troubled celebrity Rosanna Feld. Rosanna has been out of the spotlight for almost a year; no one has seen or heard from her since her rumored nervous breakdown.The details are handled by a man named Max on behalf of Rosanna.  Our unnamed narrator signs a three year contract that cannot be broken; in exchange for her An unnamed woman has the chance to leave her dull existence as a movie theater employee in a small town for the unique opportunity to move to L.A. and work as the body double for the troubled celebrity Rosanna Feld. Rosanna has been out of the spotlight for almost a year; no one has seen or heard from her since her rumored nervous breakdown.The details are handled by a man named Max on behalf of Rosanna.  Our unnamed narrator signs a three year contract that cannot be broken; in exchange for her appearances around the city, she'll receive $100,000 the first year and more the following, with a rent-free L.A. apartment.   The catch is that once her contract is up, she cannot return to her previous life/identity and instead forge a new one."I will slip into the role of Rosanna like warm bathwater. I will find a new self, a better self to take the place of whatever it is I've lost." *Her arrival in L.A. is nothing as she expected.  Our narrator spends months locked (literally) in her small apartment wearing Rosanna's clothes, eating only the foods Rosanna eats, all while studying footage to prepare for a public debut.  When Max determines she's ready to be Rosanna, our narrator is caught up in the lifestyle and fame but nagged by the unanswered questions of what caused Rosanna's breakdown and where she is now.  Is the careful and calculating Max her one true ally or is he a danger to Rosanna and her body double?An intensely sloooooow burn, The Body Double offers readers a lonely narrator whose isolation and obsession spiral into a dark mystery.  The sense of unease kept me reading but I had the end figured out almost immediately.  Since readers have no idea who the MC was in her previous life (very vague information about parents and foster care is given), it was tough for me to understand her motivations or care about what was happening to her.This was just an okay read for me but if you're a fan of slow burn mystery/thriller/noir-vibe novels, this is one you may want to consider.Thanks to Doubleday and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.  The Body Double is scheduled for release on March 3, 2020.*Quote included is from a digital advanced reader's copy and is subject to change upon final publication.For more reviews, visit www.rootsandreads.wordpress.com
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  • Dennis
    January 1, 1970
    The Body Double is a unique, dark, and claustrophobic story of a woman who is hired to be a "body double" for famous actress Rosanna Feld. Rosanna has had recent anxiety issues that have kept her hidden from the public eye, so her manager has been tasked to find someone to keep up appearances for her. This woman, who remains nameless throughout the story (which I found very gripping) is the perfect fit and is hired. Rosanna's manager is tasked to teach this woman how to behave and look like The Body Double is a unique, dark, and claustrophobic story of a woman who is hired to be a "body double" for famous actress Rosanna Feld. Rosanna has had recent anxiety issues that have kept her hidden from the public eye, so her manager has been tasked to find someone to keep up appearances for her. This woman, who remains nameless throughout the story (which I found very gripping) is the perfect fit and is hired. Rosanna's manager is tasked to teach this woman how to behave and look like her. As she is trained, we start to see this Rosanna come back into the limelight. After a dinner party with Roseanna's friends gone awry, the narrator begins to suspect if this is worth it—can she really trust anyone but herself? The Body Double is very Hitchcockian—claustrophobic, a bit repetitive, and dark. As you venture into this slow burn suspense novel, we start seeing the collapse of someone's individuality while an obsession grows. It's very intriguing and quite honestly, gripping. I would've given this story a higher rating, but there's a lot of slow burn progression that truly didn't need to be included that took away from the story. While not particularly that original, it is still beautifully executed through an immersive and intriguing narrative. Emily Beyda knows how to tell a story! Overall, it's definitely a good novel to read here and there versus binge read. I'm curious to see what Emily Beyda has up her sleeve next.
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  • Misty Wilson read.fine.print
    January 1, 1970
    I don’t think I’ve ever reviewed a book before it comes out! I feel like I have secret info to impart to you😊. The Body Double comes out in March and I can totally recommend it to you.•It’s about a common girl who is approached to be a body double for a celebrity. Hitchcock’s movie Vertigo and the book I read and reviewed a while back The Paper Wasp we’re both a little similar to this one.•My reactions, in order, as I read:“Whoa, this book is weird and that’s a heck of a lot of internal monologu I don’t think I’ve ever reviewed a book before it comes out! I feel like I have secret info to impart to you😊. The Body Double comes out in March and I can totally recommend it to you.•It’s about a common girl who is approached to be a body double for a celebrity. Hitchcock’s movie Vertigo and the book I read and reviewed a while back The Paper Wasp we’re both a little similar to this one.•My reactions, in order, as I read:“Whoa, this book is weird and that’s a heck of a lot of internal monologue.”“This character is bizarre and she certainly doesn’t behave like I would.”“Well THAT seems highly unlikely!”“I have to keep reading to see if I’m right about what I think is going to happen.”“Nope, I was so wrong.”“Whoa this book is weird!”“I HAVE to know how this book ends!”•I read it in a day. Besides some plot points I was still wondering about, a few times when the reader is smarter than the character (I hate when that happens), and maybe a too-quick ending, I enjoyed this as a creepy, suspenseful, clean read. I like to share mature content and I think this adult book only had three or four curse words.
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  • Nenia ☠️ Khaleesi of Bodice Rippers, Protector of Out of Print Gems, Mother of Smut, and Actual Garbage Can ☠️ Campbell
    January 1, 1970
    I'm such a sucker stories about the dark and depraved side of celebrity.I think it all goes back to my Jackie Collins obsession. #GlitterNSleaze
  • Suzanne thebookblondie
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you to @doubledaybooks for my gifted copy! This one publishes on 3/3/2020!The Body Double by Emily Beyda (#19 in 2020)When a man named Max comes to her small town, he recognizes that she'll be perfect for "the role." After signing an NDA and leaving her entire life behind her, our narrator moves to Los Angeles to become the body double for Rosanna Feld, the famous disaster-and-a-half celebrity. Our narrator learns how to act, talk, walk, and think like Rosanna Feld, and she is coached by M Thank you to @doubledaybooks for my gifted copy! This one publishes on 3/3/2020!The Body Double by Emily Beyda (#19 in 2020)When a man named Max comes to her small town, he recognizes that she'll be perfect for "the role." After signing an NDA and leaving her entire life behind her, our narrator moves to Los Angeles to become the body double for Rosanna Feld, the famous disaster-and-a-half celebrity. Our narrator learns how to act, talk, walk, and think like Rosanna Feld, and she is coached by Max until he feels she is ready to make her public debut. But this very unique job assignment seems to seem less of an honor as our narrator begins to uncover some sinister secrets.The Body Double makes the reader question how we, as a society, value physical appearance and the lengths one would take to be like a favorite Hollywood star.I truly love how the narrator is never named. It simply adds to the idea of how irrelevant her true identity is. Every time she is spoken to or offers up her name, she is referred to (and refers to herself) as Rosanna. On the surface, it seems so superficial, but it's an eerily dark concept beneath the surface. Our narrator is too easily convinced to sacrifice her true identity and all she knows for the prospect at being connected to Hollywood, and her regrets slowly arise until she is in too far to turn back. If you check Goodreads, the book is labeled as a thriller, but I honestly don't think it fits into that category. I would likely place it in the genre of contemporary fiction that is just dipping its toes into horror. If this book becomes a movie, I hope the darker parts are emphasized to place this into the horror genre.
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  • Alison Hardtmann
    January 1, 1970
    She's working in a run-down mall movie theater when a man appears and hires her to work as the body double for a celebrity who has disappeared from the public eye due to a breakdown. It's a lot of money and the unnamed narrator accepts the job, shedding her own identity to become adept at impersonating the celebrity. As she slowly takes on more public appearances, the risk of discovery become higher and her own sense of who she is begins to shift. But both she and the man who hired her are keepi She's working in a run-down mall movie theater when a man appears and hires her to work as the body double for a celebrity who has disappeared from the public eye due to a breakdown. It's a lot of money and the unnamed narrator accepts the job, shedding her own identity to become adept at impersonating the celebrity. As she slowly takes on more public appearances, the risk of discovery become higher and her own sense of who she is begins to shift. But both she and the man who hired her are keeping secrets that might just be bigger than the deception they're pulling on the public and those who knew the celebrity.Emily Beyda's novel begins strong, spins its wheels in the middle and then finishes with a lot less than is foreshadowed throughout the story. There was a lot of promise in the first chapters and the potential for so many exciting things to happen, which were all bypassed in favor of sitting around in an empty apartment and the gentlest of ending.
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  • OutlawPoet
    January 1, 1970
    I’m giving The Body Double a rather grudging 3 stars because: a) I appreciate what the author tried to do here and b) I did finish it.The Body Double may give readers trouble. Out of the first 30% of the book, approximately 25% is spent stuck in an apartment with one or two characters. During this time, our main character thinks, rehearses, watches videos, reads, and occasionally eats. That’s a huge chunk of the book spend doing something that could have been reduced to a chapter. Within that fi I’m giving The Body Double a rather grudging 3 stars because: a) I appreciate what the author tried to do here and b) I did finish it.The Body Double may give readers trouble. Out of the first 30% of the book, approximately 25% is spent stuck in an apartment with one or two characters. During this time, our main character thinks, rehearses, watches videos, reads, and occasionally eats. That’s a huge chunk of the book spend doing something that could have been reduced to a chapter. Within that first 30% of book, most readers will know exactly what’s happening with our characters.What you won’t know is why our main character puts up with it. And you never really get that.Our main character is a blank slate. She has no personality, no history, and no voice. This is necessary, but oh so frustrating because instead of worrying for her or rooting for her, you’re largely annoyed by her.I won’t spoil this by telling you exactly what the author intends here (besides it’s kind of obvious early on in the book), but I did appreciate that the author tried. It just takes a defter hand and a bit more restraint than we see in this book.I like the author’s ideas and would be curious to see what they come up with next.*ARC Provided via Net Galley
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  • Megan
    January 1, 1970
    I've detailed below why I am disappointed with this book. It is not a thriller. It is not worthy of being compared to Hitchcock. If you are not interested in knowing who does what, don't read further. You have been warned. All spoilers ahead.(view spoiler)[We're introduced to a no-name woman from the middle of nowhere, with no real life to speak of. She's broke and miserable, growing up with abuse and emerging into adulthood from foster care. It has been a hard life for this one. One day, her bo I've detailed below why I am disappointed with this book. It is not a thriller. It is not worthy of being compared to Hitchcock. If you are not interested in knowing who does what, don't read further. You have been warned. All spoilers ahead.(view spoiler)[We're introduced to a no-name woman from the middle of nowhere, with no real life to speak of. She's broke and miserable, growing up with abuse and emerging into adulthood from foster care. It has been a hard life for this one. One day, her boss at the movie theater she works at, of all people, introduces her to Max. Max is a mysterious man from Hollywood who claims he needs a look-alike for a famous actress. Her boss, Scott, claims to have seen an ad and thinks his no-name employee would be perfect. Plus, he's getting a finders fee. So don't go thinking he's doing this out of the kindness of his heart. Everyone and I mean everyone in this book is fake as hell and has little to no character development beyond our no-name girl. Who, unfortunately, is bat-shit crazy by the end of the book. This book leans super heavy on pathetic, sad, manipulative abusive situations and flat characters. Mostly it is the random internal ramblings of our insecure body-double and the boring drag of her daily life as she transforms into Rosanna, the starlet. Literally, painful details about what she eats, how she looks, the makeup and creams she wears, the looks Max does or does not give her. Pages and pages and pages of it.Anyway, after signing an NDA, we learn the identity and circumstances surrounding the actress' need to have a public double; someone to take off some of the load that has since driven our starlet to be anxious and stress into solitude for a while. What we don't know is Rosanna has long since killed herself, after discovering Max's hidden cameras throughout her house, and throwing the stalker weirdo out of her life for good. He comes back only to find Rosanna dead after an intentional overdose.The offer of money is made. Our no-name girl fits the bill. She's willing to give up who she is to become someone else and, after a few months of abusive, psychological grooming and plastic surgery, she's ready to assume Rosanna's life. But Max only allows her to in micromanaged bits and pieces. Naively, our no-name girl believes she is being paid to live in a dingy apartment and painstakingly learn the intricacies of our starlet's life. Mostly, the only contact she has is with Max. During the course of this transformation, our no-name double is locked into this apartment, unable to leave. She is tested and pushed; forced to eat what the starlet likes. And if she doesn't do what Max likes, he leaves her there without food for a while or withholds any sort of adoration. She's expected to work out, as he instructs. To carefully watch and read the materials only he curates for her. To wear the cast-off clothing and items from the starlet's house Max brings her. To use the old makeup the starlet had in her home. Not new. Eww. At no point is our no-name double concerned there is something gravely amiss here. She is just going along eagerly with whatever Max says, mostly. Being isolated and manipulated like this has her developing a sick Stockholm syndrome relationship with Max. It comes on rather quickly, actually. After a while, you're not sure if she's enduring all of this (the isolation, even plastic surgery) for Max or for the supposed money he is stashing away for her to have after she's done playing the starlet or for her own growing obsession about being connected to Rosanna. She is delusional and sold on the idea Rosanna will one day embrace her and accept her as perfect. Max is just her employee. But for now, she must keep him happy until she can finally meet the woman she is supposed to be.The first half of the book is boring AF. Sorry. It is. Much of it could have been consolidated to half and still driven home the same important points of our double's transformation. Instead, the slow burn is tedious and frustrating. I nearly gave up several times. The only reason I kept going was to find out if I was right about what actually happened to the starlet, who we never meet. At least not for most of the book. Instead, it is mostly the needy, insecure, sick ramblings of the no-name double who increasingly believes she is the starlet, channeling her, and her obsession with Max (who we start to see, is an unwell man). Anyone with any sense would. Our no-name girl doesn't seem to read the red flags when they come. She just normalizes the dysfunction to an unrealistic degree.Eventually, our no-name girl is allowed to leave the confines of her small apartment prison to play the role of the starlet in public, initially under a lot of control and observation by Max. Later with less and less of a physical leash. Now, she's just tethered with a mental one. Some nights, she roams the streets near the complex - swimming naked in strangers' pools, etc. Eventually, she stumbles upon the starlet's home. Seriously? She is "guided" to it some energy or force Rosanna must be emitting for her and her alone to feel..? Even now, the no-name double expects the starlet to emerge from the home and take her into her arms in a loving, sisterly gesture, finally uniting the two.I'm tired of this type of trope; leaning on abuse and mental illness to explain away common sense. Why hasn't she met Rosanne yet? Why does Max insist on controlling every aspect of her life while she's doubling for the starlet (where she goes, who she sees, what she eats and wears, even her phone)? Why is the no-name girl still referencing Rosanna as her employer when she's never spoken to or met her? How is it Rosanna has been out of contact with her fans and friends for over a year? So many red flags. Even someone who knows abuse would be hypervigilant to these, aware, and at the very least feel somewhat off about the situation (even if they are forced to normalize it). Once our double finally clues into Max's strange, overly controlling behavior - insisting they further isolate themselves "together forever" and that she should stay indoors with him in the shitty little apartment from now on, what does she do? Breaks out and escapes? Tries to formulate a plan? Using her one opportunity to ask for help from the starlet's best friend? Nope. She takes a knife in the kitchen and slices the faces of the starlet, her faces, out of the magazines she's collected and in painstaking detail describes eating each glossy page. Then she drugs Max's soda and takes a stroll to Rosanna's house. There she finds the house like a tomb, dark and filthy inside.The book is so painfully bad. It is the last 45 minutes and we have yet to get confirmation as to what happened to the real Rosanna. But we can guess it isn't good. I guessed she'd been dead for a while. Because Max was sickenly obsessed with her, to the point where he killed one and groomed another to take her place - one he could dress up like a doll and treat like his own piece of physical property. Ultimately, Max is pathetic and sad, love-obsessed with the frosty Rosanna who wants nothing to do with her (I guess he was her assistant). Rosanna killed herself and Max couldn't deal. And the body double is bat-shit crazy, thinking in a Norman Bates way that she is now the vessel of Rosanna. Max comes to the house whereupon the two end the book uttering sweet nothings to one another. "Rosanna, Rosanna...." This book was a complete waste of my time. Thank God it was a library book. I almost gave up on it several times. I wanted to spell out what happens, in case there are others like me, who would have appreciated a heads up as to just how bad this book was but still wanted to know what happened to the real actress. (hide spoiler)]
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  • Russell Atkinson
    January 1, 1970
    "It was ok" is the text equivalent of two stars on Goodreads, and that is about all I can say for this book. In this take on the unreliable narrator fad in novels the story is told in the first person by a young woman whose name we never learn. She is snatched from behind the snack bar in a small town somewhere because she bears an uncanny resemblance to a famous "influencer" - one of those social media stars followed online pushing clothes, makeup, etc. The star, Rosanna, has been out of the li "It was ok" is the text equivalent of two stars on Goodreads, and that is about all I can say for this book. In this take on the unreliable narrator fad in novels the story is told in the first person by a young woman whose name we never learn. She is snatched from behind the snack bar in a small town somewhere because she bears an uncanny resemblance to a famous "influencer" - one of those social media stars followed online pushing clothes, makeup, etc. The star, Rosanna, has been out of the limelight for some months and needs a body double to make some appearances she is not ready for. Max, Rosanna's assistant, sets about turning our girl into Rosanna's double, promising big bucks.That much of a plot is a reasonable start, although it's not original. (Google "doppelgangers in movies" to get a few dozen examples.) That much we learn in the first twenty pages or so. The book then drags with virtually nothing happening other than the narrator blathering about her thoughts, her dedication to becoming Rosanna and preparing to meet the real Rosanna, until after the midpoint of the book. I recommend reading two pages, skipping 20, then read 2, skip 20, etc. until then. After that the body double is out in society as Rosanna and things get weird and a bit more interesting. Still, it's way too slow moving. You can read 2, skip 6, until the end where the twist comes, although it really isn't much of a twist since it was predictable from early on.
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  • Linda Richardson
    January 1, 1970
    Lots of potential, but it was slower than molasses in the winter. In this 12 1/2 hour Audible after 2 hours of listening to fluff, I went to where there was 3 hours left in the book. I figured out early on the twist. Not anything like Veritigo, the Skin I’m In, or the other comparisons. That said, a good scriptwriter can spin this into gold and make a terrific movie or Netflix series.
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  • Jennifer Garnick
    January 1, 1970
    The blurb for this book was intriguing. The actual book fell short.We have a young woman working a dead end job at a movie theater. She's approached by a wealthy but mysterious stranger. His proposition? With his guidance and training (and she finds out later, plastic surgery and starvation) she will impersonate Rosanna Feld, a starlet who needs a break from the limelight. Her period of employment will last three years and then she is to disappear into obscurity so Rosanna can resume her life. F The blurb for this book was intriguing. The actual book fell short.We have a young woman working a dead end job at a movie theater. She's approached by a wealthy but mysterious stranger. His proposition? With his guidance and training (and she finds out later, plastic surgery and starvation) she will impersonate Rosanna Feld, a starlet who needs a break from the limelight. Her period of employment will last three years and then she is to disappear into obscurity so Rosanna can resume her life. For some odd reason, the young woman jumps at the chance.The wealthy man, named Max, whisks her to L.A. and puts her up in a shoddy, run down apartment. I don't know about anyone else but this would be a major red flag for me. Max is soon dressing her, instructing her, and even has a doctor come and do surgery on her. This all happens in the apartment. The major setting of this book is the apartment. Other than a hairdresser and doctor, for a long period of time Max is the only person the nameless narrator sees. I'm no doctor but you can tell that she has the beginnings of Stockholm syndrome. She's like an infant that depends on Max for everything. Her daily life in the apartment is so boring that it's almost maddening to the reader.Max decides that she's ready to be seen out in public to put her transformation to the test. This goes well and I started to think, okay, this book is about to start building up to something. Now it will finally get juicy.It doesn't. Max controls who she sees, what she says, where she goes, what she eats. Then after her outings she goes back to the same crappy apartment. Her transformation is a success. People think she's Rosanna. Mentally, she thinks she is Rosanna.Have I mentioned that we still haven't seen the actual Rosanna? Any guesses as to where she might be?The characters are one dimensional. The nameless narrator may be a good idea, but this narrator only has tiny snippets of backstory. If you blink or skim, you will miss them. You don't care about her as a person at all. Ever. Not to mention you never have it explained to you why she would ever make such a drastic, life-altering decision in the first place.The book trudges on and on and just when you think It will build to something exciting, it falls flat. The ending came and was not only confusing but it was as flat and monotone as the rest of the book.Thank you to Doubleday Books and NetGalley for allowing me to read an advanced copy of this book.
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  • Storme Reads A Lot
    January 1, 1970
    Too much of a slow burn. The characters fell flat. Nothing very interesting. I ended up skimming the last 30%, and the book just got worse. This thriller had a lot of potential, but it fell short. Disappointing since this is a debut book.
  • Aimee (Book It Forward)
    January 1, 1970
    Slight spoilers ahead....you’ve been warned!This book had a great hook, and a great premise. I think with a bit of re-working, it would be a much better story. There were plot holes, and the build up took entirely too long. I am all for an unrealistic story, but this one did not have enough plausibility for me to even suspend my belief. I predicted what was happening very early on and was disappointed when the twist was what it was. I think this would have been a much better book if that wasn’t Slight spoilers ahead....you’ve been warned!This book had a great hook, and a great premise. I think with a bit of re-working, it would be a much better story. There were plot holes, and the build up took entirely too long. I am all for an unrealistic story, but this one did not have enough plausibility for me to even suspend my belief. I predicted what was happening very early on and was disappointed when the twist was what it was. I think this would have been a much better book if that wasn’t the twist. The book idea of this woman filling in as a body double for a reclusive celebrity was enough of a story without the predictable twist. I wish the author would have written that story, not the one we got. I wanted to hear more about her public appearances, her outings, etc as Rosanna 2.0. I needed more outside characters to build the suspense, and to also allow more interaction for our main character, Rosanna 2.0. I wanted to see more suspicion from friends, more questions from the media, etc. I wanted more background on Max, more commentary from friends of Rosanna’s who knew him to really up his creep factor. All in all, this could have been much better. I’m curious to see what other reviewers and readers will think once this book is released. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Out of the Bex
    January 1, 1970
    Near perfection.In the vein of The Ghost Notebooks, Bad Man, and Social Creature, Beyda writes like a modernist with a classicists roots. Her sentences are thoughtful, with each carefully chosen word tying into that larger whole which makes this work a thematic masterpiece. What defines who we are? And can it be changed? Written over like yesterday’s already-forgotten news?The Body Double doesn’t cheat itself with cheap tricks in plot or any of the character developments you already expect. Inst Near perfection.In the vein of The Ghost Notebooks, Bad Man, and Social Creature, Beyda writes like a modernist with a classicists roots. Her sentences are thoughtful, with each carefully chosen word tying into that larger whole which makes this work a thematic masterpiece. What defines who we are? And can it be changed? Written over like yesterday’s already-forgotten news?The Body Double doesn’t cheat itself with cheap tricks in plot or any of the character developments you already expect. Instead, it offers a stirringly subtle pace that mesmerizes as much as it disturbs, the reader a pebble sinking into a deep pool—equally enthralled and terrified by its new depths.Slip into these blue-black waters one chapter at a time. Let it wash over you. Enjoy.Read Time: 24 hrsVerdict: BUY IT
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  • Amber Rexrode
    January 1, 1970
    Review by @cvillebooksandwine𝗜𝗧'𝗦 𝗣𝗨𝗕 𝗗𝗔𝗬!𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗕𝗼𝗱𝘆 𝗗𝗼𝘂𝗯𝗹𝗲 𝗯𝘆 𝗘𝗺𝗶𝗹𝘆 𝗕𝗲𝘆𝗱𝗮Thank you to @doubledaybooks #partner for my free copy!•#QOTD If you could spend a day with 𝗮𝗻𝘆 celebrity, who would it be?#AOTD I’d probably pick Meryl Streep!•A strange man discovers our nameless narrator selling popcorn at a decrepit small-town movie theater and offers her an odd and lucrative position: she will forget her job, her acquaintances, even her name, and move to Los Angeles, where she will become the body doubl Review by @cvillebooksandwine𝗜𝗧'𝗦 𝗣𝗨𝗕 𝗗𝗔𝗬!𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗕𝗼𝗱𝘆 𝗗𝗼𝘂𝗯𝗹𝗲 𝗯𝘆 𝗘𝗺𝗶𝗹𝘆 𝗕𝗲𝘆𝗱𝗮Thank you to @doubledaybooks #partner for my free copy!•#QOTD If you could spend a day with 𝗮𝗻𝘆 celebrity, who would it be?#AOTD I’d probably pick Meryl Streep!•A strange man discovers our nameless narrator selling popcorn at a decrepit small-town movie theater and offers her an odd and lucrative position: she will forget her job, her acquaintances, even her name, and move to Los Angeles, where she will become the body double of the famous and troubled celebrity Rosanna Feld. A nervous breakdown has forced Rosanna out of the public eye, and she needs a look-alike to take her place in the tabloid media circus of Hollywood. Overseen by Max, who hired her for the job, our narrator spends her days locked up in a small apartment in the hills watching hidden camera footage of Rosanna, wearing Rosanna's clothes, eating the food Rosanna likes, practicing her mannerisms, learning to become Rosanna in every way. But as she makes her public debut as Rosanna, dining at elegant restaurants, shopping in stylish boutiques, and finally risking a dinner party with Rosanna's true inner circle, alarming questions begin to arise. What really caused Rosanna's mental collapse? Will she ever return? And is Max truly her ally, or something more sinister? With echoes of Hitchcock's Vertigo,The Body Double is a fabulously plotted noir about fame, beauty, and the darkness of Hollywood.•This book had me intrigued from the first moment I heard about it! And to top it off @doubledaybooks sent me 𝘵𝘩𝘦 cutest gift bag with @coteshop nail polish to match the cover! I found the premise intriguing and it had my heart beating so fast wondering what was happening next! It was definitely a super slow burn and I guessed the twists early on, but I am definitely excited to see what Emily Beyda writes next! I give this one 3.5/5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️💫•#bookreview #bookphoto #bookstagram #thriller #suspense #bookaddict #charlottesville #cville #goodreads #lovebooks #bibliophile #bookaholic #thebodydouble #mystery #emilybeyda #doubleday #arccopy #booksharks #booksparks #sponsored #partner
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  • Melanie Coombes
    January 1, 1970
    The story sounded intriguing. A young girl with a real likeness to a celebrity is hired to become her body double. Rosanna Feld has disappeared from society and is rumored to have had a breakdown. She is hired by Max who keeps her hidden in an apartment to learn everything about Rosanna. I found the story a bit slow paced. It was hard to like any of the characters or feel real sympathy for them. The body double is in a very strange situation with no one from her past life to rely on and no one i The story sounded intriguing. A young girl with a real likeness to a celebrity is hired to become her body double. Rosanna Feld has disappeared from society and is rumored to have had a breakdown. She is hired by Max who keeps her hidden in an apartment to learn everything about Rosanna. I found the story a bit slow paced. It was hard to like any of the characters or feel real sympathy for them. The body double is in a very strange situation with no one from her past life to rely on and no one in Rosanna's life that seemed to really know her either. It was an ok read, just a bit too depressing. I received an ebook from the publisher in exchange for a review.
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  • Matt Shaqfan
    January 1, 1970
    Enjoyable, but pretty predictable.The unnamed narrator is so naive and unassuming, and that's the only way this story could work. Anyone with half a brain would see the job offer as a weird red flag and probably ask Max what he's trying to cover up. She accepts the gig blindly, and things unfold the way you would guess. The book was fun in a dark-gossipy kind of way, but the whole time I was reading, I was just waiting for the inevitable reveal that Max wasn't being completely honest about thing Enjoyable, but pretty predictable.The unnamed narrator is so naive and unassuming, and that's the only way this story could work. Anyone with half a brain would see the job offer as a weird red flag and probably ask Max what he's trying to cover up. She accepts the gig blindly, and things unfold the way you would guess. The book was fun in a dark-gossipy kind of way, but the whole time I was reading, I was just waiting for the inevitable reveal that Max wasn't being completely honest about things.
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  • Elysse
    January 1, 1970
    This was such a weird book! Our protagonist was insane - she seriously thought she was the celebrity by the end, and it really bothered me because she came off as extremely relatable at the beginning of the novel. That's why I chose to read it - I thought, oh, girl working at the movies, sounds like me in college, and yet this took a psychologically dark and unusual turn, and it was extremely unrealistic. This is probably the first book from Doubleday that wasn't a hit for me .... I was seriousl This was such a weird book! Our protagonist was insane - she seriously thought she was the celebrity by the end, and it really bothered me because she came off as extremely relatable at the beginning of the novel. That's why I chose to read it - I thought, oh, girl working at the movies, sounds like me in college, and yet this took a psychologically dark and unusual turn, and it was extremely unrealistic. This is probably the first book from Doubleday that wasn't a hit for me .... I was seriously uncomfortable with this read!
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  • Alisa Welsch
    January 1, 1970
    I won a copy of this on Good reads and was excited to read it as the plot sounded interesting . The main character (who we never really learn much about) was so bland. She was left alone, locked in a dirty apartment with little to no food for weeks at times, but never seemed to have any desire but to please the ones who put her there. The ending had a twist, but I had figured something like that would happen. Three stars for the good parts, but other parts dragged and we re frustrating to read .
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  • Moira
    January 1, 1970
    This story gives me major Vertigo/Misery/Single White Female/Fatal Attraction vibes. It’s a story where very little hands, but it was still riveting. Max has a very Svengali vibe to him, and the relationship between Narrator and Max unfolds in a way that screams Stockholm syndrome. I did find the ending to be very confusing. I re-read the final chapter several times and still don’t really understand. ARC provided by #NetGalley in exchange for an honest and thoughtful review.
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  • Jake
    January 1, 1970
    Well, I called the ending about 30 pages into it. The idea is neat, and the first chapter grabs you. However, too much of the book is repetitive and the characters aren't very interesting. For a twisty thriller, or an examination of celebrity culture, look elsewhere. For a slightly Lynchian novel about the dark side of Hollywood and an examination of Stockholm Syndrome, it's decent enough.I read an ARC, which may differ from the final version.
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  • Sheri
    January 1, 1970
    I really had a difficult time getting into this book. It was well written but I found the characters unlikable, the situation disturbing and forced myself to finish the book.This was just not right the right book for me.Thank you to the author/publisher/Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.
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  • 3 no 7
    January 1, 1970
    “The Body Double” by Emily Beyda opens in a narrative by a worker at a movie theater concession stand. She makes an Instant connection with readers through the first person construction. She shares in great detail what she sees: the landscapes, the people, and her surroundings. She describes people and places based on her observations, expectations and feelings. She rationalizes her doubts and justifies her opinions. Readers get to know her well. Someone else knows her well, too. She is perfect, “The Body Double” by Emily Beyda opens in a narrative by a worker at a movie theater concession stand. She makes an Instant connection with readers through the first person construction. She shares in great detail what she sees: the landscapes, the people, and her surroundings. She describes people and places based on her observations, expectations and feelings. She rationalizes her doubts and justifies her opinions. Readers get to know her well. Someone else knows her well, too. She is perfect, well almost perfect, for the most important role of her life – standing in for Rosanna an “ill” celebrity.Beyda constructs a story so preposterous that it is becomes believable in this age of celebrities and social media. The intense mannerism training, the social manipulation, and the physical alterations are the staple of reality TV. Readers follow as she gets a new name, new residence, and a new, large bank account. The pace is very slow as she morphs into Rosanna, leaving her past behind. She soon learns that this transformation is different from what she imagined; it becomes more than a well-paying job, more than a temporary fill-in part. This role has changed her; it sent her to a dark place. The supporting characters are also seen through her eyes. No one is as she expected; no one is her friend; no one cares about her. Readers soon come to distrust if not hate most of them. “The Body Double” starts with in intriguing premise, a stand-in for a celebrity, but too much of the story is centered on the mechanics of her transportation, rather than on her performance as the replacement celebrity. I was given a review copy of “The Body Double” by Emily Beyda and Random House. This debut novel by Emily Beyda has compelling components, but I was somewhat disappointed by the slow-burn brooding, and wanted more “celebrity conflict.”
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  • dmayr
    January 1, 1970
    A haunting tale of identity, loneliness and obsession as a nameless woman is chosen by an enigmatic man to impersonate a vanished celebrity. It is indeed a slow read but every word and phrase needs savoring to be appreciated. Everything seems cloaked in mystery and a sense of suffocation, leaving a lot of questions unanswered, including the ending, but overall it was a very good reading experience.
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  • Maura
    January 1, 1970
    I read it so you don’t have to.
  • Mom_Loves_Reading
    January 1, 1970
    Round up to 3.5...It's hard to review this book without giving away any spoilers, but this was a great debut novel for the author. For me, it was a little bit too slow, & as a seasoned psychological thriller reader, I figured the twists out early on. There are a lot of unlikable characters in this book, which is no biggie for me.."The Body Double" is intriguing, thought-provoking & clever, but kinda fell flat for me overall. Don't let that discourage you from reading it for yourself. I love a LO Round up to 3.5...It's hard to review this book without giving away any spoilers, but this was a great debut novel for the author. For me, it was a little bit too slow, & as a seasoned psychological thriller reader, I figured the twists out early on. There are a lot of unlikable characters in this book, which is no biggie for me.."The Body Double" is intriguing, thought-provoking & clever, but kinda fell flat for me overall. Don't let that discourage you from reading it for yourself. I love a LOT of books that other people didn't so to each his own!
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  • Terris
    January 1, 1970
    I'd like to thank NetGalley, Emily Beyda, and Doubleday Books for the advanced reader's copy in exchange for my unbiased review.A young woman is asked to secretly become Hollywood star, Rosanna Feld’s body double while Rosanna recuperates from her recent illness. No one really knows why she has disappeared. However, to keep her ‘brand’ alive until she returns, a replacement is needed. Max, Rosanna’s agent, trains this young look-alike to ‘become’ Rosanna, and the story continues with how Max con I'd like to thank NetGalley, Emily Beyda, and Doubleday Books for the advanced reader's copy in exchange for my unbiased review.A young woman is asked to secretly become Hollywood star, Rosanna Feld’s body double while Rosanna recuperates from her recent illness. No one really knows why she has disappeared. However, to keep her ‘brand’ alive until she returns, a replacement is needed. Max, Rosanna’s agent, trains this young look-alike to ‘become’ Rosanna, and the story continues with how Max controls her movements, thoughts of Rosanna get into her head, and what happens when she begins to go out into public imitating Rosanna, even to Rosanna’s closest friends. But where is Rosanna? When is she coming back? Is she coming back? This book keeps you guessing.I rated it 3.5 and rounded up to 4 stars. It is a little wordy, describing everything that this woman (I don’t think her name is ever given!) thinks and feels. It kind of kept me off balance, messed with my mind – but maybe that was the author’s goal!However, it kept my attention enough that I wanted to keep reading to see what was going to happen and how the story was going to end!
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