Monday, August 5, 2013

Reality Ends Here by Alison Gaylin

Publisher: Pocket Star
Pages: 250
Format: eARC 
Buy the Book: Amazon 

Goodreads:  With a major crush on an adorable pop star, annoying younger siblings, and a mom and stepdad who are too strict, Estella Blanchard is a typical teenage girl-except that her daily struggles are plotlines on the reality show Seven Is Heaven, which relentlessly documents her life as the older half-sister of sextuplets. Estella's an Oscar-worthy actress at hiding her true feelings from the camera.

However, she can't outrun the spotlight when she receives a Christmas present from her biological father...who died ten years ago under mysterious circumstances. Blamed for this "sick prank," Estella is placed in an unorthodox support group for troubled child stars-including a twenty-three-year-old has-been, a backstabbing drama queen, and a super-cute (but very off-limits) boy bander. And, as weird as the group is, when a creepy paparazzo starts stalking her, claiming that her dad is actually alive, Estella's going to need their help to uncover the truth and stay alive.


Kritters Thoughts:  Are you a reality tv fan?  Do you like to read books that take you behind the scenes?  As I would answer YES, to both questions, I loved this book that took me inside a reality tv show through the eyes of the teenager where her home has become the set for the show.  One might think this show has some similarities to John & Kate Gosselin's adventure in reality tv, but I do wonder what the author used as a reference.  

I absolutely loved how the author presented the family and the workings of the reality tv show and how when a tv show is shot in a family's home, the child looses a safe place as their home is invaded by a whole production team.  As Estella joins a support group of sorts, it was interesting to see the similarities and differences between her experience on a reality show and other stars who shoot tv shows and films, but get to maintain a "home" life.

The one thing that threw me for a loop was the pace of the book.  The beginning moved at a perfect pace as things were unfolding, but the end of the middle and the end sped along like a bus out of control.  I wish there was a little more pulled out to give a little more depth to the ending.

A book that I would recommend to a teen audience as the subject matter and presentation were definitely tame enough for a true YA reader.  

Rating: perfect YA read

Ebook 2013 Challenge: 52 
out of 50

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Simon and Schuster.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.




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