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A Novel

Amy Poeppel


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Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (4/30/2018)
Paperback (5/14/2019)


“Written with heaps of humor and just as much heart, Limelight is a testament to the transformative power of good mothering, the magic of the stage and the allure of Manhattan—even if you arrive in a Ford explorer with Texas plates.” —The Washington Post

“When I saw the glamourous scene on this cover, I thought it might be an escape—and it was a hilarious one! ...This read was so fun! I laughed out loud at the over-the-top celebrity antics—it left me grateful for my low-drama life!” —First for Women

Best New Books You Should Read This Spring —PopSugar

In a smart and funny new novel by the author of the critically acclaimed, “big-hearted, charming” (The Washington Post) Small Admissions, a family’s move to New York City brings surprises and humor as their lives merge with the captivating world of Broadway.

Allison Brinkley—wife, mother, and former unflappable optimist—discovers that a carefully weighed decision to pack up and move her family from suburban Dallas to the glittery chaos of Manhattan may have been more complicated than she and her husband initially thought.

Allison learns that New York is unruly and bewildering, defying the notions she developed from romantic movies and a memorable childhood visit. After a humiliating call from the principal’s office and the loss of the job she was counting on, Allison begins to accept that New York may not suit her after all.

When Allison has a fender-bender, witnessed by a flock of mothers at her son’s new school, she is led to the penthouse apartment of a luxurious Central Park West building and encounters a spoiled, hungover, unsupervised teenager who looks familiar. It doesn’t take long to recognize him as Carter Reid—a famous pop star who has been cast in a new Broadway musical. Through this brush with stardom, Allison embraces a unique and unexpected opportunity that helps her find her way in the heart of Manhattan.

In a book that delivers laughs, warmth, and delightful wish fulfillment, Poeppel dives into celebrity culture and modern motherhood with her trademark “quick-witted and razor-sharp” (Taylor Jenkins Reid, author of Maybe in Another Life) style.

Praise For Limelight: A Novel

"Will strike a chord in every reader."
— US Weekly

"Outstanding...A tribute to Broadway, teen celebrity life, and a mother who has now seen it all, this work is tough love at its finest and a great read for those wanting a ride on the wild side."
— Booklist (starred review)

"With well-developed characters and an engaging plot, Poeppel's sophomore effort (after Small Admissions) is sure to please the many fans of the her first novel."
— Library Journal

“The prose is smooth and clever, making for a page-turning, charming novel full of laughs and tears.”
— Publishers Weekly

"Amy Poeppel's charming read lifts the curtain on celebrity culture."
— Us Weekly, The Best of Spring Reads

"LIMELIGHT is a unique blend of the audacious celebrity lifestyle and the challenges of modern-day mothers. It's clear that Poeppel is passionate about her love of Broadway and life in New York City, but above all, the story takes the spotlight off the stage and points to the importance of a strong family unit--no matter how that may look."
— Associated Press

"Readers, prepare to be surprised by this unexpected and unique novel. Told from the perspective of a middle-age substitute teacher, Limelight explores the theme of family in all of its interesting and unconventional forms. The characters are breathtakingly open and honest."
— RT Book Reviews

"Such a delight! I rise to a standing ovation for Limelight, especially for dialogue that had me marveling on every page. Carter Reid has to be the most wonderfully/perfectly rendered spoiled celebrity brat I’ve encountered on the page. Brava, Amy Poeppel!"
— Elinor Lipman, author of ON TURPENTINE LANE and THE INN AT LAKE DIVINE

“A delightful, twist-of-fate tale of a suburban transplant whose new Manhattan life collides with that of a troubled pop star on the cusp of his Broadway debut. LIMELIGHT is a quintessential New York story of motherhood, family, and fairy-tale possibilities. A must-read for fans of Lauren Weisberger and Sophie Kinsella.”
— Jamie Brenner, bestselling author of The Husband Hour

“An absolute delight! Celebrity culture and modern motherhood collide in a warm and witty love letter to Broadway, told with Poeppel’s pitch-perfect wit and smart, breezy style. Allison and Carter are the odd couple you've been waiting for. Hysterical!”
— Georgia Clark, author of THE REGULARS and THE BUCKET LIST

"Amy Poeppel has pulled out all the stops to create an authentic inside glimpse into the theater world."
— Tony Shalhoub, actor

"The story of a Broadway primadonna and the behind-the-scenes theatrical world made Amy Poeppel's novel very special for me . . . A wonderful read!"
— Roger Horchow, Tony Award-winning Broadway producer

"Witty, assured, and remarkably tender, Limelight is a grade-A delight. Once again, Poeppel shows us that she's a master of observation. With her as a guide, everything--ranging from motherhood, to New York City, to hilariously spoiled teen idols--takes on a new, refreshing glean."
— Grant Ginder, Author of PEOPLE WE HATE AT THE WEDDING

"LIMELIGHT is a fun peek into the world of teen idols and Manhattan life."
—, "Best New Books You Should Read This Spring"

"Allison is my new fictional BFF, I could not get enough of her from the moment I read the first chapter. She's gutsy, witty, caring and a little crazy, but she's real."
— NovelGossip

"If you want a story with wonderful characterizations and an insider's look at Broadway (with a cameo appearance by Kevin Kline), and one that will make you laugh, LIMELIGHT has you covered. I highly recommend it."
— The Citizen (Auburn)

"There's very little that's controversial here. It's a book about an entirely competent middle-aged woman organizing, cajoling, scheduling and strategizing her way through a series of obstacles. That's precisely what makes the novel so delightful. Yes, Allison name-drops Kevin Kline, New York restaurants and fashion designers. But women everywhere will recognize and appreciate her as a Woman Who Gets Stuff Done."
— The Dallas Morning News

Must-Read Women's Fiction
— USA Today

"This book was a delight."
— The Tallahassee Democrat

“I was excited to see a new book from this author. Her last book – SMALL ADMISSIONS – wound up being kind of a surprise for me in how much I wound up liking it. This one I went in with some expectations, and I have to say it lived up to them. I loved, loved, loved the NYC setting… Fun read!” 
— Rebel Mommy Book Blog

"This book has it ALL: sweet glimpses of motherhood, fun NYC glam, and a hilariously spoiled superstar. A must-read for this summer"
— Beyond the Bookends

"Gorgeous, dazzling and maddeningly addictive, LIMELIGHT deserves a throne on every bookshelf this summer."
— The Modern Jetsetter

"The book is hilarious, warm and fabulous."
— Great Thoughts "Top Books of 2018"

Atria/Emily Bestler Books, 9781501176371, 416pp.

Publication Date: May 1, 2018

About the Author

Amy Poeppel is the author of the novels Small Admissions and Limelight. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Rumpus, Literary Hub, Working Mother, and The Belladonna. She and her husband have three sons and split their time between New York City, Germany, and the wilds of Connecticut.