The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes: A Novel (Paperback)
“The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes is a page-turning peek inside the glamour and brutality of life as a pop star. Sloan takes us on a wild ride through the world of music video shoots, expensive hotels, and arena tours—showing us the darkness that threatens just below the surface.” —Taylor Jenkins Reid, New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Jones and The Six
“I didn't know I was waiting for a smart, literary writer to craft a novel about the rise and fall of a teen star akin to Britney Spears until I discovered The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes. A witty, bright, hilarious—and at times devastating—read. I loved it." —Amanda Eyre Ward, New York Times bestselling author of The Jetsetters
Cassidy Holmes isn't just a celebrity.
She is “Sassy Gloss,” the fourth member of the hottest pop group America has ever seen. Hotter than Britney dancing with a snake, hotter than Christina getting dirrty, Gloss was the pop act that everyone idolized. Fans couldn't get enough of them, their music, and the drama that followed them like moths to a flame—until the group’s sudden implosion in 2002. And at the center of it all was Sassy Cassy, the Texan with a signature smirk that had everyone falling for her.
But now she's dead. Suicide.
The world is reeling from this unexpected news, but no one is more shocked than the three remaining Glossies. Fifteen years ago, Rose, Merry, and Yumi had been the closest to Cassidy, and this loss is hitting them hard. Before the group split, they each had a special bond with Cassidy—truths they told, secrets they shared. But after years apart, each of them is wondering: what could they have done?
Told in multiple perspectives—including Cassidy herself—and different timelines, this is a behind-the-scenes look into the rise and fall of a pop icon, and a penetrating examination of the dark side of celebrity and the industry that profits from it.
About the Author
Elissa R. Sloan is a Texas-native Japanese-American with a penchant for reading books and celebrity gossip. She lives in Austin with her husband and two cats in a house with a rolling library ladder. The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes is her debut novel.
“The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes is a page-turning peek inside the glamour and brutality of life as a pop star. Sloan takes us on a wild ride through the world of music video shoots, expensive hotels, and arena tours—showing us the darkness that threatens just below the surface.”
— Taylor Jenkins Reid, New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Jones and The Six
“I didn't know I was waiting for a smart, literary writer to craft a novel about the rise and fall of a teen star akin to Britney Spears until I discovered The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes... A witty, bright, hilarious—and at times devastating—read... I loved it."
— Amanda Eyre Ward, New York Times bestselling author of The Jetsetters
“A witty, devastating and ultimately beautiful peek behind the illusion of fame...With a perfect combination of music, drama and depth, The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes takes us on a journey I won’t soon forget. From the opening line to the stunning close, this is a mesmerizing, thrilling and must-read debut.”
— Patti Callahan, New York Times bestselling author of Becoming Mrs. Lewis
"The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes is for anyone who wondered why Britney shaved her head and attacked a car with an umbrella. Salacious and fun at moments, it's also insightful in the way Sloan examines the toll that stardom takes on these young women's mental health and personal value."
— Zoe Fishman, critically acclaimed author of Invisible as Air and Inheriting Edith
"The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes flips fame upside down to expose its underbelly, stripped of glitter and gloss. This story sweeps across time and perspective, but most importantly, through the rise and fall of a dream."
— Alena Dillon, author of Mercy House
"If you loved Taylor Jenkins Reid's Daisy Jones and the Six and know every lyric to a Britney Spears song, this one is definitely for you."
— E! Online
"Fans of Daisy Jones and the Six shouldn't miss out on The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes by Elissa R. Sloan."
"Readers looking to take a walk on the wild side should pick up Elissa R. Sloan’s debut for an exhilarating tale about the dark side of celebrity."
— Harper’s Bazaar
"Get out your butterfly clips, put on some Spice Girls, and call your gal pals after reading this tale of friendship and the dark side of fame."
— Good Housekeeping
"Get ready for a whirlwind of 90s pop nostalgia."
"Told from different points of view and different time frames, the novel explores how the entertainment industry treats and catastrophically shapes people...The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes invites great pause and for us to ask ourselves: when do we forget that people are people and not just vehicles for our entertainment?"
"Sloan takes on the fraught topic of mental illness coupled with the pressure of fame in her sensational debut... The dark side of fame is evident throughout this spirited and expertly plotted story... Sloan's debut will leave readers eagerly awaiting her next outing."
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Sloan deftly shifts between the meteoric rise of Gloss in the early aughts and the current day, where Yumi, Merry, and Rose are struggling both with Cassidy’s suicide and their own lost dreams. This pop-culture-inspired debut reads like an expose´...or a particularly tragic episode of Behind the Music."
— Booklist Online
"A book that kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time...The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes is a book that will open your eyes and make you reflect on many situations...It’s bold and raw, and definitely needed in the world we’re living in today."
— The Nerd Daily