by Kate Christie
Movie star Tessa Flanagan has retired from the Hollywood grind with a string of popular and critical successes behind her. Now her days revolve around spending time with her daughter Laya and launching a new career in philanthropy. She doesn’t expect a brief encounter with Eleanor Chapin, Laya’s new kindergarten teacher, to make a lasting impression.
As the end of the school year nears, however, Tessa realizes that her daughter’s beloved Miss Chapin may be the perfect nanny for the summer. Natural and direct, Eleanor already understands Laya’s need for life out of the public eye. Even though it means inviting a stranger into their household, Tessa is certain her own carefully guarded secrets will not be at risk.
For Eleanor, L.A. is merely a stop between Boston and a long-awaited Ph.D. program. But the job offer from Tessa Flanagan is so lucrative she is tempted to put her plans on hold. The idea of working closely with Tessa is equally enticing, but the job is about Laya. There’s no reason not to take it—after all, she’ll be leaving L.A. soon.
Kate Christie explores the distance from Chicago’s South Side to the Hollywood Hills, from bucolic New England to lush Kauai through the passionate connection between two women looking for home.
GCLS Goldie Awards
Leaving L.A. — Finalist, Traditional/Contemporary Romance.
Lambda Literary Review
August 2011: ...It starts out strong and stays that way to the end. You'll laugh out loud, you may even cry, but you won't want to put this book down and undoubtedly will be annoyed when your everyday life insists that you set the book aside... Leaving L.A. could very well end up as one of the ten best books of 2011.
Kate Morgan West - April 2011: This novel moved me... Maybe it's because the characters are a little older or because I could relate to some of the Tess's and Eleanor's experiences a little more. But, regardless, I actually teared up when finding out Tess's childhood secrets... After reading these two novels, I'm really looking forward to Christie's third called Beautiful Game, due out in July 2011.
Just About Write
May 2011: Leaving L.A. is a well written, absorbing story. The attraction of the two women lingers long in the reader's thoughts. The relationship between them is haunting, and the character of Laya is entertaining and delightful. This is not another "glamorous actress in Hollywood" story. It is about interesting characters that goes beyond Hollywood and allows us to see a star as a real person with desires and foibles. A love story well worth the read.