Fame Junkies: The Hidden Truths Behind America’s Favorite Addiction

Fame Junkies book cover
Jake Halpern
December 2006

In this groundbreaking book, Jake Halpern embarks on a quest to explore the facinating and often dark implications of America’s obsession with fame. Traveling across the country, he visits a Hollywood home for aspiring child actors and enrolls in a training program for would-be celebrity assistants. He drops by the editorial offices of US Weekly and spends time at a laboratory where monkeys give up food to stare at pictures of dominant members of their group. Whether he is interviewing Rod Stewart or the nation’s leading experts on addiction, Halpern deftly uncovers the strange working of our fame obsessed psyches. By interweaving stories from his travels with new research, including original findings from his own “fame survey,” Halpern explains how psychology, technology, evolution, and profit conspire to make the world of red carpets and velvet ropes so enthralling. Fame Junkies is a provocative and insightful portrait of an America that wants nothing more than to see and be seen.