The One

Book review by
Stephanie Dunnewind, Common Sense Media
The One Book Poster Image
Gorgeous twins hit success in unlikely Hollywood tale.

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age 13+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive Messages

Chloe has a "the ends justify the means" philosophy, which includes tricking and lying to people. Chloe makes a point of enrolling in school but she and her brother often cut classes. Chloe talks back to her mother, but then, her mother is a horrible role model. Chloe is willing to flirt with guys if they can help her out in some way. On the positive side, Chloe is very determined; she and her brother have a close relationship.


Nika mentions a homicide in her notes but this is foreshadowing; nothing about that comes up in this book.


Chloe's dad cheats on her mom, "screwing girls just a year or two older" than her. Chloe's not-to-do list includes not taking nude photos or making a sex tape with a boyfriend. A 20-something lesbian photographer tells Chloe to let her know if she ever decides "to swing the other way." Chloe buys a box of condoms and "decides to lose my virginity to a cute guy at school who I liked well enough." She wanted to see "what all the fuss was about" and decided that it wasn't "half bad." Chloe meets a porn movie producer who tries to "hump" her on the dance floor. An agent tells Chloe she'll have to "do" a producer to get on a TV shows. Chloe's mom, working as a seamstress, says it's hard to measure pants when the client is "engorged." Chloe's mom starts living with a man with several other known girlfriends. Chloe wants to become emancipated so she can do nude scenes and earn more money; her friend gets paid more because "I'm showing my tits and you're not." Chloe asks, "Who cares about showing your knockers in some stupid flasher flick?" (Chloe herself is filmed in a wet T-shirt and no bra.)


"Damn," "boobs," "tits," "asshole," "butt," "f--k," "hell," "bitch," "pissed," "s--t," "slut."


Numerous namebrand mentions of food, media, electronic gadgets, designers, TV shows, and alcohol. Chloe sews her own pageant dresses to save money.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Chloe and Travis' mom is an alcoholic; she drinks wine and hard liquor. "The absolute best way to get her out of bed is to threaten to dump her booze," Chloe notes. Chloe makes a list of things not to do, including getting drunk, driving drunk, or dating someone with a drug addiction. Travis gets a fake ID so he can get into a party, where they drink apple-tinis and cosmos.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know the attractive 16-year-old main characters are routinely hit on by adults, and sex is treated casually; Chloe says she is willing to show her chest on film or sleep with the right guy if it will get her a good acting job with more money. There is also underage and excessive drinking (the twins' mother is an alcoholic) and some cursing.

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Teen, 17 years old Written byjazzy93 January 8, 2011

the best book ever.

i love this book had to read some book for senior English and i just choose this one because i read the back cover and it looked really cool.

What's the story?

Chloe Gamble and her twin brother, Travis, come across as small-town Texas hicks when they arrive in Hollywood, but Chloe's ambition and stunning looks seem like an unbeatable mix. That is, until she breaks the movie studio rules and crashes an audition. Will that one mistake ruin her chance at fame?

Is it any good?

Hollywood is not the place for reality, so plan to suspend those "Would that really happen?" questions to enjoy THE ONE. The novel includes Travis' emails to a friend and excerpts from Nika's manuscript about her experiences as Chloe's agent, but the real focus is Chloe's first-person narrative. Chloe can con or charm everyone into helping her -- usually for free -- because she has "It."
The author's background as a producer, director, and writer lends authenticity to Chloe's experiences, even if her rise seems unrealistically fast. Readers who would never want to be friends with the competitive, driven teen will likely still find her Hollywood introduction fascinating.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Chloe's ambition: Do they think it is admirable, or selfish? Is it OK for her to lie to get what she wants? Would they want to be friends with Chloe? Chloe says maybe she is a gold digger and a whore, "but as I see it, I'm practical. What am I supposed to be after?" What do readers think her answer should be?

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