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Published by Harlequin Teen on May 30th, 2017
Genres: Romance, YA
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?
I was provided a review copy by Harlequin Teen; this did not influence my opinion of the book.
From the writing dynamo, Erin Watt comes a relatable, young adult romance about first love, family, and the struggles of transitioning into adulthood.
“When It’s Real”, tells the story of a wild and spoiled young male who, at the young age of 19, is already on the verge of being a washed up musician. Concerned, his well-paid team of assistants and manager decide his image needs an overhaul. They hire “the girl next door” to be his fake girlfriend for one year with the hopes that not only will his image improve, but maybe he will be inspired to write new music. Vaughn Bennett, at the tender age of 17, is helping raise her 12 year-old-twin brothers with her older sister. Two years ago their parents died, leaving the two older girls responsible for keeping the family together. Money is short, so when propositioned with a large amount of money to be a fake girlfriend to the obnoxious and self-absorbed Oakley Ford, Vaughn puts her family first.
Readers who devoured The Royals series should find they appreciate this latest book from Erin Watt. These two authors write spectacularly on their own, but when coupled together, they are a force to be reckoned with.