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Damage Control

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An actress practically since birth, Grace Durand has finally made it in Hollywood. When a photo of her in a seeming compromising situation with another woman is plastered all over the tabloids, she fears for her career as a lead in romantic movies. Desperate for a publicist who’ll convince America that she’s straight, Grace hires Lauren Pearce, one of Hollywood’s leading PR An actress practically since birth, Grace Durand has finally made it in Hollywood. When a photo of her in a seeming compromising situation with another woman is plastered all over the tabloids, she fears for her career as a lead in romantic movies. Desperate for a publicist who’ll convince America that she’s straight, Grace hires Lauren Pearce, one of Hollywood’s leading PR agents, not knowing that she’s a lesbian. Lauren has dealt with PR nightmares for years, so doing damage control for one more rich, spoiled client shouldn’t be a problem—or so she thinks. But the more time she spends with Grace, the more she realizes how different she is from her television persona. Getting involved with her client is not in her game plan, especially since it would confirm the rumors and ruin Grace’s career, but the attraction between them is growing as they run the gauntlet of the paparazzi together.


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An actress practically since birth, Grace Durand has finally made it in Hollywood. When a photo of her in a seeming compromising situation with another woman is plastered all over the tabloids, she fears for her career as a lead in romantic movies. Desperate for a publicist who’ll convince America that she’s straight, Grace hires Lauren Pearce, one of Hollywood’s leading PR An actress practically since birth, Grace Durand has finally made it in Hollywood. When a photo of her in a seeming compromising situation with another woman is plastered all over the tabloids, she fears for her career as a lead in romantic movies. Desperate for a publicist who’ll convince America that she’s straight, Grace hires Lauren Pearce, one of Hollywood’s leading PR agents, not knowing that she’s a lesbian. Lauren has dealt with PR nightmares for years, so doing damage control for one more rich, spoiled client shouldn’t be a problem—or so she thinks. But the more time she spends with Grace, the more she realizes how different she is from her television persona. Getting involved with her client is not in her game plan, especially since it would confirm the rumors and ruin Grace’s career, but the attraction between them is growing as they run the gauntlet of the paparazzi together.

30 review for Damage Control

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bethany

    This is a re-read for me, and I still loved every minute!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marilyn

    This was a very enjoyable slow-burn, or slow-build. The main characters were very likeable.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Pin

    This is the second book in the Hollywood series, and I liked it a bit more than the first one, but I have the same complaint -- rushed ending. The secondary character Jill was just great, and now I'm eagerly waiting for "her" book. I hope that it will have a more fleshed out ending. Three and a half stars, rounded up because of Jill.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kaila

    RE-READ: August 2020 I only read this book three months ago but I’ve been thinking about it constantly. I really needed a book that I knew would make me happy, so I fell back to this. I loved it more this time around, so much so that I’ve bumped it up from a four to five star. Love love love this book: love the characters, love the story and love the relationships. 4/5 stars Oh my god was I obsessed with this book. I feel my need to binge this author coming on and I'm not sure I will be able to re RE-READ: August 2020 I only read this book three months ago but I’ve been thinking about it constantly. I really needed a book that I knew would make me happy, so I fell back to this. I loved it more this time around, so much so that I’ve bumped it up from a four to five star. Love love love this book: love the characters, love the story and love the relationships. 4/5 stars Oh my god was I obsessed with this book. I feel my need to binge this author coming on and I'm not sure I will be able to resist it. I'm relatively new to reading ff romance, and I feel like I've been missing something great for so many years. This was such a sweet, fun and entertaining romance, I was honestly addicted right from the beginning. This was relatively long for a romance book, so I felt like all of the characters, even the prominent side characters, were well-developed and full of so much life. This felt like such a genuine romance, which is why I was so obsessively reading it, even though it was a very slow-burn romance. I'm not normally one to love slow-burn because I'm too impatient and get frustrated easily, but this felt frustrating in a good way. All the yearning I felt for the characters felt honest and realistic to the situation that they were in. It also made it all the more sweeter for when they did get together. I also love that this was set in Hollywood, including all the dramas of life as an A-list celebrity. Books like this are kryptonite for me, I don't know why but romance book set in the craziness of Hollywood just speak to my soul. It makes it more dramatic and angst-filled, and while this book wasn't necessarily angsty, there were a lot of challenges for our main characters getting together. I loved Lauren and Grace separately, but together they were on a whole different playing field. They truly complemented each other, and honestly it spoke directly to my heart. I also really loved the friendships in this book, especially with Grace and Jill, so imagine my absolute excitement that I get to read a romance about her too!! Get ready for this series to be the only thing on my feed for a week.

  5. 4 out of 5

    lov2laf

    3.5 stars Lauren, a cynical workaholic publicist, is assigned to P.R. one of Hollywood's most beloved actresses. Grace, the beloved actress, is figuring out what truly makes her happy and fulfilled which is more difficult than it sounds since her entire life has been about putting up fronts and playing roles. While both Lauren and Grace attempt to overcome and re-frame every scandal the Hollywood rags publish will they both willingly walk right into the biggest scandal of them all; that they've f 3.5 stars Lauren, a cynical workaholic publicist, is assigned to P.R. one of Hollywood's most beloved actresses. Grace, the beloved actress, is figuring out what truly makes her happy and fulfilled which is more difficult than it sounds since her entire life has been about putting up fronts and playing roles. While both Lauren and Grace attempt to overcome and re-frame every scandal the Hollywood rags publish will they both willingly walk right into the biggest scandal of them all; that they've fallen in love with each other? Jae is one of my favorite authors in the lesfic genre but I agree with the sentiments of others here that this isn't her best. Usually I read through her books in 1-2 days but this book took me several attempts to finish. Overall, I found "Damage Control" to be super bland and not that interesting of a story. It wasn't until about 80% of the way through the book that I felt like it had life in it. It took me awhile to figure out why and I think it comes down to that both Grace and Lauren aren't very interesting. They're both likable and Grace is about as picture perfect a person can be both inside and out. Neither of them had much depth, though. And none of the other characters had much depth, either. Also, I kept mixing Lauren and Grace's names up with their characters as I was reading. That rarely happens for me. Grace and Lauren believably fall for each other but it is a sloooooooow journey and their interactions, though sweet, aren't that riveting. This surprised me since Jae's other books have layers, conflict, fun/witty dialogue, depth, vividness, etc. This one just felt stilted and kind of trite. Another factor may be that I lived in Los Angeles for a long time so the whole Hollywood thing doesn't intrigue me much. So, what was good about the book? 1) It's a feel good love story. 2) The characters actually take time to get to know each other (one of Jae's trademarks). 3) A friend of Grace's has MS and is depicted in a realistic and humanizing way. 4) It's solidly written, ie professionally published. Actually, as a side note, this book would've been a TON more interesting if Grace was the one with MS. That would've introduced numerous layers and really intriguing dynamics between her and the people in her life. Darn. I digress, though... Who might enjoy this book? Readers that want a slow unraveling feel good love story, people who want to read about someone that comes out later in life, people that feel their "gayness" is a surprise, people who don't put labels on sexuality, those that prefer books with limited sex/affection depicted in their love stories or maybe those that enjoy a book steeped in Hollywood. Overall, this book is a solid, eh, okay. Before reading this, I'd recommend all of Jae's other books over this one.

  6. 4 out of 5

    MJS

    Jae's books are usually at least 4 stars, and this is no exception. I liked both leads, and this is a slow burn, so they spend a lot of time together and their relationship unfolds naturally. I felt like we got to know far more about Grace than we did about Lauren, just by virtue of th fact that Lauren had to know a lot about Grace to do her job, so it felt more like Grace's story featuring Lauren, but Lauren was still a great character. Jill also shone as a secondary character, and having read Jae's books are usually at least 4 stars, and this is no exception. I liked both leads, and this is a slow burn, so they spend a lot of time together and their relationship unfolds naturally. I felt like we got to know far more about Grace than we did about Lauren, just by virtue of th fact that Lauren had to know a lot about Grace to do her job, so it felt more like Grace's story featuring Lauren, but Lauren was still a great character. Jill also shone as a secondary character, and having read Heart Trouble prior to reading this, I already know the next book is her story, and am looking forward to it. Grace's relationship with her mother was the only downside to the book, I kind of felt like the conversations they have here should have already have happened, and that did make Grace's character look a bit weak (in my opinion, others may disagree). I also didn't like that Lauren's script is for the Shaken to the Core story, as that kind of feels like it invalidates all of the historical romances Jae wrote in the series that preceded Shaken, as they obviously now belong to fictional universe within a fictional universe. All in all though, it's an enjoyable romance with interesting characters, something Jae can always be relied upon for.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Tara

    I didn't like this quite as much as Departure from the Script or Under a Falling Star, but I still liked it a whole lot. Grace and Lauren are both fantastic, I want to kick Grace's mother into the sun, and Jill is an awesome sidekick friend. I'm SO GLAD to hear that Jill's getting her own book and can't wait for that. 2016 reread: I enjoyed it even more than the first time and am bumping it up to 5 stars. I actually disagree with my initial assessment and think it's a better book than Departure I didn't like this quite as much as Departure from the Script or Under a Falling Star, but I still liked it a whole lot. Grace and Lauren are both fantastic, I want to kick Grace's mother into the sun, and Jill is an awesome sidekick friend. I'm SO GLAD to hear that Jill's getting her own book and can't wait for that. 2016 reread: I enjoyed it even more than the first time and am bumping it up to 5 stars. I actually disagree with my initial assessment and think it's a better book than Departure from the Script and Under a Falling Star, but I stand by everything else from my first read. I also like the comment from one of the other reviewers on here that Damage Control is a slow build, not a slow burn. I think that's bang on correct. Full review here: http://www.thelesbianreview.com/damag...

  8. 5 out of 5

    Elske

    I am re-reading the Hollywood series and loving it just as much as the first time! 5 stars !

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lexxi Kitty

    This is the second time that I have read this book. And unlike the first time I read this series, I read book one and book two back to back. Heck, last time I read book 1, then waited a year (give or take 3 or 4 months) to read book 2. Though that was because I had to wait for book 2 to be published. So, what can I say? Grace is an actress, has been since her mother thrust baby Grace into auditions, and one of the leads of the book. Oh, and several other things of importance: 1) she has that vagu This is the second time that I have read this book. And unlike the first time I read this series, I read book one and book two back to back. Heck, last time I read book 1, then waited a year (give or take 3 or 4 months) to read book 2. Though that was because I had to wait for book 2 to be published. So, what can I say? Grace is an actress, has been since her mother thrust baby Grace into auditions, and one of the leads of the book. Oh, and several other things of importance: 1) she has that vaguely girl next door, 'pure', type of image; 2) her mother is her manager (and quite manipulative); 3) she's married, though separated from a man named Nick who is an action star; 4) best friends with Jill. Being best friends with Jill is the start off point for this book. Specifically Grace's attempts to help Jill which leads to certain . . . pictures being taken of them, which leads to certain research being conducted by those gay people who like to out closeted gay celebrities. For you see, Grace and Jill were photographed in an intimate like pose leading back to one or the others trailers, and, later, strong evidence surfaced that they had spent time together at a hotel. Obviously . . . .. So, manager and agent of Grace contact a new public relations firm, after firing the old one (without first checking with Grace), which leads to the other main character in the book - Lauren - who is super good at public relations. Of note about Lauren: 1) as noted, very good at public relations; 2) loves her job more than anything else - as in, she's very poor at keeping up relationships; 3) is an out lesbian; 4) has had a) bad experience with the entertainment industry based upon growing up in it (mother high level producer (I believe she ran a film studio at some point), father directer (and acted at some point) and seeing parents being absolute self-centered assholes and b) having bad relationships with people in the industry; 5) writes scripts on the side - as a way to ease stress, though never shows the scripts to anyone; 6) apparently has no friends. Side characters of note: Grace's mother - opinionated, botoxed, plastic-y, failed actress, controlling; Jill - actress, closeted lesbian, dated one of the leads in first book in series (Amanda), though didn't appear in that book, has multiple sclerosis; Nick - current husband and future ex-husband of Grace's; Tina and Marlene - people at Lauren's work, one boss (Marlene), other . . . um . . . receptionist type, though I thing she's actually a junior PR person (she just seems to do a receptionist job) - rarely in the book); George - gay agent of Grace's; Amanda - star of that crime show that Grace occasionally co-stars on and star of the first book - actually has some scenes in this book; Michele - Amanda's man-looking (what, they made a specific point) girlfriend who is only scene dropping off and kissing Amanda and has no lines in this book; Lorena - another co-star on that crime show, had a bigger 'role' this time around (since she plays the on-show girlfriend of Amanda's character), though more scenes in the first book. Um. Peyton - stand in for every girlfriend of Lauren's before she meet Grace - as in, overlooked, unappreciated, and ultimately unsatisfied. A good portion of the book involves 'everyone' fighting the PR war against those nasty press people regarding Grace and Jill's escapades. 'No! Grace isn't a lesbian! She was helping a friend!' Another good portion of the book involved lesbian Lauren lusting after straight Grace. While lesbian and MS suffering Jill weakly sits by the side making comments; while Grace's mother grunts in annoyance. Lots of traveling to promote a film. Grace attempting to figure out why she has these weird lust like symptoms around Lauren, which is completely unexpected since she, Grace, isn't a lesbian. She even tested it by starring hard at a nearly naked Jodie Foster and finding no lust in her. Quite good book. Enjoyable. Rating: 5+ (possibly will end up on my 6 star shelf) March 28 2017

  10. 5 out of 5

    Morgan

    3 stars This is the second book in the Hollywood series and while I did enjoy the first book, this one didn’t do much for me. The story revolves around Grace, who is a Hollywood child actor turned movie star. Her life is changed when she’s introduced to her new publicist, Lauren, due to their ever growing attraction. I took issue with a few things with this book, for one Grace so hell bent on “being straight” I was actually surprised when she finally caved in to her feelings. She was so in the cl 3 stars This is the second book in the Hollywood series and while I did enjoy the first book, this one didn’t do much for me. The story revolves around Grace, who is a Hollywood child actor turned movie star. Her life is changed when she’s introduced to her new publicist, Lauren, due to their ever growing attraction. I took issue with a few things with this book, for one Grace so hell bent on “being straight” I was actually surprised when she finally caved in to her feelings. She was so in the closet, when she had feelings for Lauren she convinced herself that it couldn’t possibly be true. This is all well and good, but there was no gradual buildup to her ultimate coming out. One minute she was in the closet and in denial, the next she was agreeing to be in relationship with Lauren. It was extremely sudden. I understand that coming out is a different process for everyone, but in my opinion, hers didn’t stay true to her character. Another thing I took issue with is that Grace had almost an obsession with what she ate, while although fitting for her character, it became quite old, quite fast. Especially because that part of her character development never improved. Towards the end of the book it seemed like Jae was almost glorifying this borderline eating disorder Grace had. The last thing was the repetitive jokes. There was some light humor in the story, however the jokes were always the same. It went something along the lines of: We wouldn’t want any bad publicity about “insert what they are about to do”. The writing was just alright and the story was sweet. I did enjoy the ending much more than the rest of the book. In fact if 1/3 of the story was cut out, it would’ve flowed much nicer. Overall I’ll give this book a major “meh”. I won’t be picking it up again but it was an ok read.

  11. 5 out of 5

    M

    Damn had a longer review and managed to not save at the critical point! What more can I say about this author that hasn't been said before and better by others. She's great, read all her novels and find out this truth for yourself. I love the slow burn, the plot is a handy prop for the interaction of the lead characters, but really this is about Romance. Gritty reality doesn't and shouldn't have any place in this book. Reading Jae's novels always reminds me of the Rocky Horror Picture Show (go with Damn had a longer review and managed to not save at the critical point! What more can I say about this author that hasn't been said before and better by others. She's great, read all her novels and find out this truth for yourself. I love the slow burn, the plot is a handy prop for the interaction of the lead characters, but really this is about Romance. Gritty reality doesn't and shouldn't have any place in this book. Reading Jae's novels always reminds me of the Rocky Horror Picture Show (go with me on this one...). Each book, to quote from the movie "Makes you shiver in an.....tici.............pation". As an aside, can I be the only one that finds Tim Curry crazily attractive? Whatever! Love this book, hope there is a sequel concentrating on Jill.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Farah

    Hell yes! What a ride, a straight, married but separated and heading for divorce A-list actress fell slowly then hard for her lesbian publicist. There were nothing instant except for the coffee.. I think. This couple really took their time to upgrade their status from working relationship to becoming a couple. Absolutely love it, worth the 1O bucks and looking forward to rereads.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lia A

    Jae never failed me. This one is no exception.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Shark

    Not a full review but here's one thought that plagued me throughout the reading of the book and months afterwards. Jae is proclaimed to be the "Slow Burn" Queen and rightfully so, but this book should come with a big warning - it is the SLOWEST burn perhaps in the history of lesfic. If the slowest of the burns is your thing - you will love the book, if you love the MCs to actually intimately interact sometime in the first 90% of the book - try something else. Jae has a ton of great books. The wr Not a full review but here's one thought that plagued me throughout the reading of the book and months afterwards. Jae is proclaimed to be the "Slow Burn" Queen and rightfully so, but this book should come with a big warning - it is the SLOWEST burn perhaps in the history of lesfic. If the slowest of the burns is your thing - you will love the book, if you love the MCs to actually intimately interact sometime in the first 90% of the book - try something else. Jae has a ton of great books. The writing is as always great and the setting of Hollywood and celebrity -very interesting.

  15. 4 out of 5

    C. Mack

    Love this book! It's definitely one of my all time favourites and a must read for any lesfic fans.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Heath

    A solid re-read. It might merit a bump to 4.5.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Blink51n

    I enjoyed this less than Departure From the Script. It was much longer, which was good until I found myself skipping through. In saying that, I once more loved Jae's character building as well as the nicely developed romance. Secondary cast are really well done and I'm certainly looking forward to reading Jill's story next. There were some genuinely funny moments and I really liked the banter, but have to leave this one as 3 stars for the dragged out middle and rushed ending.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Yoly

    Loved it! I'm glad this book is a bit longer than Departure from the Script which was just too short in my opinion. In this one the story didn't feel rushed, many things happened and we got enough time to get comfortable with the characters. Loved it! I'm glad this book is a bit longer than Departure from the Script which was just too short in my opinion. In this one the story didn't feel rushed, many things happened and we got enough time to get comfortable with the characters.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Arien

    The main characters weren't complex enough to warrant the length of the book. Jill had a more interesting story when compared to either of the main characters and I ended up speed reading the latter half of the book just to finish it. While the ending is almost always clear in these kinds of novels, the journey to it was too predictable to keep my interest.

  20. 5 out of 5

    C. Mack

    I adore this read and it's my go to when I want a fantastically well written, feel good romance.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ty

    2.5 stars. I didn't enjoy this one as much as the first book in the series. The writing felt more cliched than what I usually expect from Jae, and I never really felt the chemistry between the two main characters. It's disappointing because it's clear time was taken to develop these characters, and to draw out their story to give it some weight. I'm not sure why I didn't connect with the characters.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    I love Jae's books. This book seemed to run a little long in places, but I really didn't mind. I love the character of Jill which, will be getting her own story. I really like the characters in this series. I look forward to the next book.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Versi

    3.5 Good characters, but the story takes a long time to start for the end to be so hasty.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Musa

    I originally started with Just Physical (i.e. Jill's book), half way through the book, I just felt there were so many missing holes so I've decided to close the book, start the series with Damage Control and I'm so glad I've done that. This story is a bit of a slow burn, but personally I think the pace is just right. Grace was practically navigating through a lot of "issues" in her life - from bad publicity, divorcing husband, an over-bearing mother/ manager and discovering her true emotions for I originally started with Just Physical (i.e. Jill's book), half way through the book, I just felt there were so many missing holes so I've decided to close the book, start the series with Damage Control and I'm so glad I've done that. This story is a bit of a slow burn, but personally I think the pace is just right. Grace was practically navigating through a lot of "issues" in her life - from bad publicity, divorcing husband, an over-bearing mother/ manager and discovering her true emotions for Lauren. Anything faster will likely felt rushed, though from how the story ends, I do felt it is a little bit abrupt. Luckily Dress Tease and Just Physical is already published by the time I'm writing this review, so I'm going to move onto the next and have more of Grace and Lauren.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

    It is a typical story by Jae with a slow build romance, which I like and I think it makes the plot stronger but I don't like her rushed endings. I feel like in all her books she draws it out for the main characters to get together and when they finally do, it is rushed to end and there is no real conclusion. The characters were well written and I enjoyed reading the story.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Margaret

    ** Updated review January 2016** I have re-read this book countless times and still get the swoon. This is definitely one of my favourites and as such have bumped up from my initial 4 stars to a 5 star review. Guaranteed warm 'n fuzzies **Initial review April 2015** An enjoyable read with well-rounded characters. It is a companion to Departure from the Script, and it was certainly great to get glimpses of the lovely Amanda (and Michelle). The book is slow build but not slow burn -- an important diffe ** Updated review January 2016** I have re-read this book countless times and still get the swoon. This is definitely one of my favourites and as such have bumped up from my initial 4 stars to a 5 star review. Guaranteed warm 'n fuzzies **Initial review April 2015** An enjoyable read with well-rounded characters. It is a companion to Departure from the Script, and it was certainly great to get glimpses of the lovely Amanda (and Michelle). The book is slow build but not slow burn -- an important difference to me, as I almost always find slow burn frustrating but this one, I found myself trusting the author and enjoying the journey both the main characters took both separately and together. I felt this book was more well-rounded that Departure From the Script (which I still gave 4 stars). The only slight criticism I would give is that, despite the epilogue, the book finishes too quickly (although certainly not so much that it left me annoyed/ decrease my overall enjoyment of the book -- which is more than I can say for a number of the other books I have read in the lesfic genre). Overall, well worth the read. I hope we see Grace, Lauren, Amanda and co in another book in the series about Jill.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lunatic

    This is a very slow pace romance (just like all of Jae's works I had read so far, with possibly the exception of Under a Falling Star), but it's all worth it near the end. The author capable of building up every bit of emotions for our protagonists, the little hints of feelings and those attractions adding up together, teasing the readers along the way, then finally she tosses them all out for their final climaxes- no pun intended. I think the conclusion of this book is a little rush. Readers st This is a very slow pace romance (just like all of Jae's works I had read so far, with possibly the exception of Under a Falling Star), but it's all worth it near the end. The author capable of building up every bit of emotions for our protagonists, the little hints of feelings and those attractions adding up together, teasing the readers along the way, then finally she tosses them all out for their final climaxes- no pun intended. I think the conclusion of this book is a little rush. Readers still didn't know much about the future of Grace's career, as well as Lauren's career. Regardless, their love is secured. Plus, I am very very excite for Jill's story, I think she is definitely one of my most favorite character as the author successfully bring the readers' attention toward her at some points. I can't wait for her book! (but I have to).

  28. 5 out of 5

    Monkeymys SQ

    Love this story sooo much Very well written and the story is great I really love connection, interaction and how relationships between Grace and Lauren developed. For me, It feels real and certainly is beautiful. And with factors that might keep them apart, everything just become even more interesting and encouraging. But Grace's mother totally get on my nerve, though. LOL. Other than that every character is great I very much enjoyed reading it

  29. 5 out of 5

    Cheri

    I think this is my favorite Jae book since Second Nature. I liked the characters so very much. It's a long book that gave me plenty of time to get to know Grace and Lauren, just as it gave them time to get to know each other. I'm sad to be leaving them but what a nice HEA. I'm off to start the next in the series.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Heidi

    Slow building romance. Jae makes her characters emotions show though very well! I heard rumored the next in the Hollywood series will be about Jill. I hope that is correct, she is a wonderful character.

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