on May 30, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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From #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt comes the addictive contemporary tale of a teen rock star in need of an image makeover and the teen girl hired to be his fake girlfriend.
Meet Oakley Ford-teen celebrity, renowned pop star, child of famous movie stars, hottie with millions of fangirls… and restless troublemaker. On the surface he has it all, but with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry, and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley's team decides it's time for an intervention. The result: an image overhaul, complete with a fake girlfriend meant to show the world he's settled down.
Enter seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett-devoted sister, part-time waitress, the definition of "normal." Under ordinary circumstances she'd never have taken this gig, but with her family strapped for cash, she doesn't have much of a choice. And for the money Oakley's team is paying her, she figures she can put up with outlandish Hollywood parties and a team of publicists watching her every move. So what if she thinks Oakley's a shallow, self-centered jerk? It's not like they're going to fall for each other in real life…right?
The title speaks to the story in ways that will have you feeling the threads between Oak and Vaugh n bind together, strengthing and entwining you in their journey to REAL. The relationships, responsibilities, pressures, love and losses in Vaughn and Oakley’s lives are very real. The writing and specifically the character development is honest, easily having you root for these two to find happiness.
What starts as a set-up, resisted by both Oak and Vaughn grows into a comforting presence and then into something so much more . I loved how as they got to not only know each other but also experience the other’s life they both realize that looking in from the outside on somebody’s life isn’t what it seems.
I think what surprised me the most about this story was the humor. The witty banter brought me back to feeling young, cherishing the excitement of the unknown, most of all being able to laugh at yourself. The world Erin Watt has created is full of a fabulous cast of characters that will delight, endear and infuriate you. Each adds their unique touches to the story. I hope to hear more about double dates that turn into more.
Finally a word about the Twitter messages throughout the book. They are a highlight, the progression and there use to show the growth and development in Oak and Vaugh’s relationship is perfection. Complete perfection given the nature of the story and Oak’s fame.
When It’s Real is heartfelt and hilarious. A treat to read. I highly recommend it.