What Readers Have to Say

It's a great book!

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Amanda Watson

Some nice things about the book.

John Doe

Read Samples from the Book

FROM CHAPTER 1

The first thing she noticed was the windows. Through them, she could see all the skyscrapers beneath the grey clouds. The city stretched and she felt small. Intimidated, even. And Stella Knight wasn’t even here yet.

Kat took a seat at the long table. She wore a white blouse and black dress pants, looking even more professional with her brunette waves tied back into a low ponytail. The room was, as she expected, filled with mostly White men in grey suits looking down at their phones, probably answering emails or texting their girlfriends instead of their wives. She was used to being in rooms like this one, where she was one of few women and often the only woman of color.

There was some chatter in the room, but Kat couldn’t pay attention right now. She opened up her black padfolio and glanced over the notes she had taken on her flight from LAX to LaGuardia the previous day. Kat had read practically every article ever written about Stella Knight in the past week since she found out she was getting assigned this job. She probably knew more about Stella than her own fans did at this point.

Kat noticed the room got quiet right when the door opened, and there she was. Stella Knight stood tall wearing a white, feathery coat, black pants, and big, round, black sunglasses. Her brown, straight hair fell lightly down her back. Kat knew from her research Stella was half-White and half-Mexican, just like herself. But looking at Stella, Kat didn’t think she would be able to tell if she hadn’t already known. Even though she was wearing sunglasses, Kat felt like she didn’t look at anybody else in the room.

Stella walked in silently, trailed by a White man, maybe in his thirties, wearing a black t-shirt and holding a phone in his hand. He was by far the most dressed-down person in the room. He walked in casually and found his seat next to Stella, the only two chairs left in the room.

Sitting up straight, Stella checked her phone, put it down on the table, and looked up. Everyone else looked up, as if following her lead.

Kat instantly saw how Stella could command the attention of the entire room. She imagined how that must change a person, when everyone notices your every move. All eyes on you. It must make you feel pretty powerful. But it probably fucks you up a little bit too. Stella set her sunglasses down on the conference table and turned to look at Kat; it’s the first time she acknowledged her presence in the room. “Go.”

Kat looked back at Stella, not really sure what to make of this. What to make of her. Who walks into a room like this? With no greeting, no respect for other people. Of course she’d seen the video, but she didn’t think she’d actually be that bad in real life.

“So, I’m Kat,” she said with a shaky voice.

She kind of expected Stella to say hello or even introduce herself, but Stella just looked at her with cold eyes. Uninterested, like there were a million places she would rather be than here. And to be fair, there were probably way more important people, especially famous ones, Stella could be with right now.

Ignoring the fact that her hands had started to shake, Kat went on. “I’m a consultant at Change It, a non-profit based in LA that helps people like you use their platform for good. We can connect you with charities or help you choose new projects. Since you have millions of followers and a lot of influence, you can make a huge difference by using your voice.”

Stella just stared at Kat with a blank look in her eyes. “And?”

Kat continued, “Basically, I’m hired to help you raise awareness of important social issues. You can work on gender equality, racial equity, mental health awareness, LGBTQ rights, fighting homelessness…”

“And why am I the person to speak on any of these topics? I’m a singer, not Michelle Obama.”

“You’re right. You’re not. But the press loves stars that do good. Good headlines means more album sales, more good reviews. All the things you probably want.”

Stella stilled. She looked down at the table, wheels turning in her head. Weighing the pros and cons. Feeling the shame whirlwind she’d gone through the past few months in the headlines. “Stella Knight is Cancelled… Again,” “Petition to Ban Stella Knight from Grammy Awards Goes Viral,” “5 Times Stella Knight Was Your Problematic Fave.” Sure, nobody ever saw her tears, but they were there. Pushed down to the back of her throat during the day, when she had to walk from her car to her front door with security guards and screaming fans on either side of her. As soon as she got inside and the last members of her security team left, she’d sit on the floor next to her bed and cry without even thinking about it. It was just an automatic response. It was a routine at this point. If this was an all-time low, Stella hoped she couldn’t fall any lower.

“Let’s get this over with then.”

About the Author

Ashley Boren

Ashley Boren is a recent graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), where she studied communication and professional writing.

Ashley decided to publish this book because writing a book has been on her list of life goals that she thought would happen later on, so when she got this opportunity she couldn’t pass it up. She struggled with the decision of what career she wanted to pursue when she graduated college, feeling torn in two directions— doing what she loves and what she’s excited about, or pursuing jobs she feel that she should do, such as non-profit work. Kat & Stella comes out of that struggle, that tension— how can we each create positive change in any role we’re in?

When Ashley’s not writing, she enjoys watching The Bachelor, reading books, cooking vegan food, journaling, and going to the beach.

Why Wait? Read the Book Now

Kat & Stella is available now. A portion of the proceeds are donated to X organization.

$ 72.00 $ 49.00

if you buy now.

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