Thursday, November 18, 2010

Reality Check by Jen Calonita

Sixteen-year-olds Charlie, Keiran, Brooke, and Hallie live on the quiet and quaint North Fork of Long Island. It may not be glamorous, but it is real—and that’s exactly why they get signed to star on their very own reality TV show.

But cameras and interfering producers surreptitiously scripting their lives start to affect their relationships. Brooke seems to want all the screen time. Keiran is written off the show—and consequently the group’s friendship—when she doesn’t rate well.
When Charlie realizes what is going on, she figures out the perfect way to give the studio and her home audience a much-needed reality check.

Stars: 3/5
Cover: B+

I must admit, I had pretty high expectations before reading this book, because I've read Jen Calonita's Secrets of My Hollywood Life series and her novel Sleepaway Girls, and over all, I really enjoy Jen Calonita's books.

Reality Check was no exception.

Charlie, Brook, Hallie, and Keiran are a group of high school friends that are practically inseparable. When a reality TV producer sees Charlie and her friends, she knows immediately that they are perfect for her new reality TV show.

Charlie is "the star" --- basically the show revolves around her --- but her friend Brooke won't have any of it. Brooke wants all the spotlight for herself and her new friend (who is only hanging out with Brooke for the fame).

The girls are shocked after they see the first episode --- all of their words are taken out of context, and made to seem like they are all trash talking about each other. 

Arguments among the girls start to break out, and soon, Brooke and her old group of friends aren't even talking anymore. 

Reality Check kind of --- no, not kind of --- really reminded me of Lauren Conrad's L.A. Candy series, that is based around being on a reality TV show, also. So for originality, I'd have to dock the points a little bit. 

The book, I felt, was completely predictable, which sort of took away from the story line --- for me, at least.
There wasn't really much suspense at all, not that I was expecting this book to be a thriller or anything, but I did want there to be at least a little bit of a cliffhanger.

The characters' dialogue was really good and flowed very nicely, which is something I really like about books, in general. Jen Calonita didn't make the dialogue seem like it was an adult trying to talk like a teenager, which was a plus.

I feel like maybe Jen could have been a little more creative with the hard ships of reality TV, instead of just the usual, like loosing your friends and having your words taken out of context. After all, she has enough experience in this field of celerities and reality TV.

All-in-all, I thought this was a good book, despite the originality issues and the predictability of the plot.

I definitely recommend this to anyone who wants a really fast, really easy read that doesn't require too much brain power.

FTC: I bought this book.


  1. I love Jen Calonita's Secrets Of My Hollywood Life series. Reality Check is a good book...better than Sleepaway Girls...but still not as good as SOMHL. Charlie is a great character - nice, funny, charismatic, Type-A, confident but not overly so - the type of friend we all want.

  2. im not happy with merlayna. she shoudlnt have gotten to keep her show as she is a BAD PERSON.


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