“Someday, Someday, Maybe” is a novel about a 20-something actress struggling to catch a break in 1990s New York. Not coincidentally, the author of “Someday, Someday, Maybe,” Lauren Graham, was once a 20-something actress struggling to catch a break while living in 1990s New York.
But that shouldn’t count as a knock against this charming debut novel. Graham, who grew up in Northern Virginia and is best known for playing ultra-cool single moms on “Gilmore Girls” and “Parenthood,” has smartly mined just the right details from her own experience, infusing her work with crackling dialogue and observations about show business that ring funny and true. Despite its forays into predictable chick-lit territory, her book succeeds as a winning, entertaining read largely because of Graham’s confidence and ceaselessly observant wit.
In “Someday, Someday, Maybe,” we meet Franny Banks, one of the many table-waiting artists who flock to New York like moths eagerly bringing head shots to a flame. Franny is talented, a tad klutzy and guilty of repeatedly extending the succeed-or-surrender deadline that, if honored, would end her attempts to parlay detergent commercials into a serious acting career. Her supportive but clueless father suggests that she “apply for” a role on “Friends,” prompting Franny to explain that she’d rather work in the theater and, also, that she’s not skinny enough to land a primo sitcom gig.