Once More from the Top: A Novel (Hardcover)

Once More from the Top: A Novel By Emily Layden Cover Image
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A propulsive, layered novel about the meteoric rise of a legendary pop star and the secret she’s kept hidden for fifteen years, for fans of Megan Abbott and Daisy Jones & the Six.

Everyone in America knows Dylan Read, or at least has heard her music. Since releasing her debut album her senior year of high school, Dylan’s spent fifteen years growing up in the public eye. She’s not only perfected her skills when it comes to lyrics and melody; she’s also learned how to craft a public narrative that satisfies her fans, her label, and the media. In the circles of fame and celebrity in which she now travels, the careful maintenance of Dylan Read pop star is often more important than the songs themselves.

And so lots of people think they understand everything about Dylan Read. But what no one knows is the part of her origin story she has successfully kept hidden: her childhood best friend Kelsey vanished the year before Dylan became famous. Now, as Dylan’s at the height of her career, Kelsey’s body is found at the bottom of their hometown lake—forcing Dylan to reckon with their shared past, her friend’s influence on her music, and whether there’s more to their story than meets the eye.

Immersive, page-turning, and psychologically astute, Once More from the Top is a riveting and keenly observant novel about friendship, ambition, and the cost of fame. 

About the Author

Emily Layden is the author of All Girls, which she developed and wrote an adaptation of for HBO. A graduate of Stanford University, Emily has had her writing appear in The New York Times, Marie Claire, The Billfold, and Runner’s World. A former high school English teacher, she lives in upstate New York.

Praise For…

"Emily Layden has written a rock and roll thriller drenched in love, humanity, and the ferocious power of female friendships." — Jessica Anya Blau, author of Mary Jane

"Lyrical, graceful, utterly propulsive, in Once More from the Top Emily Layden charts the meteoric rise of American megastar Dylan Read. With her effortless, confessional prose, Layden draws back the curtain of fame, asking us to consider how much female celebrities in particular have to sacrifice in the name of ambition, how much we expect them to reveal, or, in Dylan’s case, conceal. Both an origin story and a fable, the last notes of this compulsive novel played in my head long after I’d put it down." — Ellie Eaton, author of The Divines

“A deliciously insider-y peek into the music industry and fame — Layden has a gift for making the world and her characters feel wonderfully real. You won’t be able to put it down.” — Rufi Thorpe, author of Margo's Got Money Troubles

"A juicy mystery filled with gossip—and music you can almost hear." — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"A powerhouse....Megan Abbott fans will devour this." — Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“A perfect, lyrical gut-punch that probes desire and ambition, what it means to be a “good girl” and the necessary armor that requires…At once fast-paced and richly textured, ONCE MORE FROM THE TOP is one of the most significant works about the creative process, memory, friendship, and coming-of-age that I’ve ever read." — Rachel Kapelke-Dale, author of The Ballerinas

"In Once More From The Top, Emily Layden has crafted a propulsive and clever mystery where the complications of ambition, fame, and female friendship are as compelling as the question of what exactly happened to Kelsey Copenstenke. The prose sings and the secrets simmer in this atmospheric, powerful novel." — Katie Bishop, author of The Girls of Summer

“An exciting, innovative debut from a fresh and assured new voice… a sincere, poignant, and moving story." — Taylor Jenkins Reid on All Girls

"An assured and tender debut novel." — New York Times Book Review on All Girls

"An insightful prep school drama." — People on All Girls

"Extraordinary…kept me turning pages not only to uncover its central mystery but to discover something deeper: the surprises and secrets of this riveting cast of characters.” — Chloe Benjamin on All Girls

“The pages turn fast and the girls are complex, compelling and written with incredible tenderness.” — New York Times on All Girls

"Sharp, engrossing." — Town & Country on All Girls

"A striking debut." — Good Housekeeping on All Girls

"Incisive, astute." — Publishers Weekly on All Girls

Product Details
ISBN: 9780063315099
ISBN-10: 0063315092
Publisher: Mariner Books
Publication Date: September 10th, 2024
Pages: 320
Language: English