Motion picture producer Selena Ryan has the impossible: Fame and fortune and her integrity. Her reputation for playing fair in an industry rife with games has earned her respect from other producers, writers, and actors.
She’s learned the lesson that plenty of people would like to use her to get what they want—a starring role or some other way into the movies. Burned badly by actress Jennifer Lamont, who used her and left her with a devastating aftermath, she’s wary of everyone related to the industry.
When Gail Welles literally lands in Selena’s lap, she suspects another ploy. Jennifer’s sudden arrival back in her life is equally ill-timed and suspect. On the verge of producing her biggest film to date, Selena wants everyone to leave her alone, even if that means living without love.
Lights, camera and action are the backdrop for this lesbian romance novel of taking chances by Golden Crown and Lambda Literary award-winning author Karin Kallmaker.
Lambda Literary Awards
Stepping Stone - Finalist, Best Lesbian Romance
The Lesbian Review
Stepping Stone is a lesbian romance that has a few of my favourite themes: celebrity love, a rich girl/poor girl romance, and an age gap between the two leading ladies….it's an entirely satisfying romance. I enjoyed the interactions between characters, both lead and supporting.
Reviewed by Jill Sorensen - September, 2010: Dear Ms. Kallmaker, You are a Lambda Literary award winning author. It says so right on the front of your book! I've also seen your name cited many times when readers recommend lesbian romance. Stepping Stone is the second Kallmaker I've read and it won't be the last... I rooted for Gail, and for the supporting cast as a whole. The filmmaking details were fascinating to me, perhaps because I already have a strong interest in the subject. I took several film studies courses in college, as well as screenwriting and even a beginning acting class. All of the behind-the-scenes stuff in Stepping Stone added to the story without getting in the way.
Just About Write
This novel was a sheer pleasure and joy to read. The insights of Hollywood, the location shooting in Spain, the power moves, who the players are and how to become one - this novel was sheer delight... So many perfect moments! When Selena gets the one-up on the studio big wigs. When Gail is shopping for clothes for her first big Hollywood function - they go on and on. And the humor is as always spot on... Winner!
Kallmaker...has also written some very real and likeable characters. Selena has been hurt and betrayed in the past and chooses to bury herself in work she loves: making movies. Gail is about to give up and go back home. How these two women work through their fears is a wonderful story. The other characters are just as real and easy to care about.
May, 2010: Lifting a page to turn it is like peeking behind the curtains of the intimacies of people's lives as Kallmaker reveals another turmoil-filled, deliciously budding romance. Stepping Stone is filled with insight into the workings of Hollywood and insight into the people who populate this community.
Kallmaker has written an exceptionally strong and convincing story. She obviously knows quite a bit about how things work behind the scenes in movie production and that information adds depth and believability to the plot. As usual for her the characters are multidimensional and draw the reader into the story.
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Always been intrigued by Holllywood’s BTS politics w actors/producers/writers/agents, etc. Karin Kallmaker really dug inside the trenches of what happened when the cameras were off. Convincingly told w brilliantly insightful writing. I believed it. I think that’s what happens in showbiz – all the publicity (real or concocted), backstabbing, lies, cover-ups, doing anything to hide one’s homosexuality (which still happens in this day & age, unfortunately!)… The subject matter is still so timely even though this book was written almost a decade ago. Needless to say, I lapped it all up at top reading speed & was thoroughly satisfied by the end of it!
And if you’re as intrigued as I was with the antagonist in this book (even though she got on me tits with her self-absorption, conniving behaviour!), I highly recommend KK’s “Captain Of Industry” (yes, I’m plugging this book too because bloody hell, it’s WORTH it, so there!) after reading “Stepping Stone,” as KK so deftly expanded her character, back story & delved deeply into her psyche, her drive, her purpose that she became one of the more complex protagonists (one of me favs) I’ve come across in lesbian fiction.
I’ve since re-read this book alongside “Captain of Industry”just to get a complete picture of everyone involved in it & it was a blast! If you ask me, “Stepping Stone” & “Captain Of Industry” should be read as companion books. I wish I could post both reviews side by side here. But as such, you can read my review of “Captain of Industry” here…
Anyway, well done & thank you, Ms. Karin Kallmaker for giving us such compelling characters to root for!