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Real Actors, Not People

The Frannie Shoemaker Campground Mysteries, Book 8
Narrated by: Michelle Babb
Length: 4 hrs and 7 mins
5 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Summary

Frannie Shoemaker and her friends go camping to get away from the real world. So, they are surprised and dismayed to find their wilderness campground the production site of a new "reality" show - Celebrity Campout. Reality intrudes on their week in the form of accidents, nature, and even murder. They handle the situation with their usual humor, compassion, and mystery solving, because...camping can be murder.

©2018 Karen Musser Nortman (P)2019 Karen Musser Nortman

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Who knows what goes on in Hollywood?

Frannie and Larry Shoemaker really enjoy their camping holidays with family and friends. But frequently their exciting times together are also invigorated by the extra spice of murder, and this anticipated extended autumnal holiday is no exception. The extreme weather conditions also initially reduces their idyllic surroundings to a more unpleasant one of ice and mud. But it is the unexpected discovery that a new reality TV programme is about to be filmed there which really causes the problems, as has -been and never-made-it celebrities gather on the same site to be filmed in Celebrity Campout. Some are nice and some - are dead. If Frannie is there, it has to be murder.

This delicious series is peopled with great characters doing all the normal, and sometimes unconventional, things that everyone does whilst on holiday. They cook, shop, dress up, go sightseeing and argue. And, of course, try to discover which of their holiday companions is a killer.
The dialogue is natural, the people realistic, just the experiences rather odd. And this is all enhanced by the exce!lent narration of Michelle Babb, whose warm voice perfectly delivers the story. It has been a long wait for this instalment of camping with the Shoemakers and I sincerely hope that the next foray out with their camping van will be soon.

My thanks to the rights holder of Real Actors, Not People, who, at my request freely gifted me with a complimentary copy. It was, as always, thoroughly enjoyable and recommended for all who enjoy character filled, untaxing, amusing and pleasurable reading with a twist of danger and mystery. And as each story is completely stand alone, all of the books can be read in any order.

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  • Ashley Hedden
  • 01-02-20

Great Read

Real Actors, Not People (A Frannie Shoemaker Campground Mysteries Book Eight) was another good read by Karen Musser Nortman. While Frankie and her friends are camping, they find it is a production site for a new reality show. Unfortunately there are accidents and even a murder on the set. Frankie and the gang try to solve the mystery of what happened. Michelle Babb did a great job of narrating. I can’t wait to read more by Karen Musser Nortman.

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  • Anne Rightler
  • 24-01-20

Great Cozy Mystery

Real Actors, Not People by Karen Musser Nortman is the eighth book in the Frannie Shoemaker mysteries. Another campground...another murder. Frannie once again finds herself smack in the middle of a murder investigation. Frannie and friends find themselves in Upper Michigan (my home state!) in this story. Lots of fun and a good cozy mystery. A reality show is about to begin filming and the actors are characterized as being 'has-been' or 'never were'--and someone has a grudge. With some twists and turns to the plot, the author keeps you guessing to the end as to the culprit. Nortman's Frannie Shoemaker books are fun to read (or listen to as this reviewer did). The narrator, Michelle Babb, does a nice job of giving characters their unique voice, making for an enjoyable listening experience. I've enjoyed this series and hope there are more books to come. I received a complimentary copy of the audiobook and was not required to write a review. The opinions are my own.

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  • Kim Templeton
  • 11-01-20

Keeps getting better

Frannie Shoemaker, her husband, and her inlaws have arrived at another campground only to find out their campground will soon become the site of a celebrity reality show. When the celebrities show up, it was obvious they have no previous camping experience. Shortly after the show starts shooting footage, someone associated with the show is found dead. Frannie and her family get pulled into the investigation. Can they help find what really happened?

This series just keeps getting better. I love Frannie and her family and friends. They are realistic, fun, and relatable characters. The mystery is well-plotted, has plenty of suspects, and several twists and turns along the way to the big reveal. This series makes me want to go camping even though I’ve never camped in my life. This is a reflection of how well the book is written.

I listened to the audio version of this book. Narrator Michelle Babb is a gifted storyteller. Babb brings the story to life, allowing the reader to easily visualize what is happening in the book. She has a wonderful tone of voice which helps bring out each character’s personality. I recommend listening to the audio version if you have that option.

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  • Lomeraniel
  • 08-01-20

Reality show campground!

This time, Frannie and her friends will be sharing the campground with a bunch of old actors and TV crew who are busy recording a reality show. They will witness staged conflicts but the corpse found is very real.

This time, Donna and Rob Nowak join the Shoemakers and the Ferraros. They do not meet snow in this book, but plenty of rain and cold, which creates funny situations among the actors participating in the reality show. The story was well written and it was entertaining, as previous books, but I felt somehow less engaged this time. I am not sure if it was due to the fact that I do not watch TV or because I suspected who the murder was already quite early in the story. I enjoyed the interactions between characters, and the fact that we have Donna in this book, makes for different situations and dialogues than the previous one.

The best part of this audiobooks, and also why I decided to listen to it, was Michelle Babb’s narration. Her casual tone and wonderful character’s interpretations make listening to her narrations a delight. It really matches this kind of book well, emphasizing the light tone of the narrative, and bringing the characters to life. I confess that I would enjoy listening to Michelle Babb’s reading the phone book!

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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  • Christina
  • 23-12-19

An enjoyable listen!

I love this series, and I love the narration of Michelle Babb! She really brings the characters to life, and I feel like Frannie & the gang are my actual friends. This book follows the group to a new campsite where they are also filming a celebrity tv show. When one of the producers mysteriously dies, murder hits close too close for comfort and Frannie begins to investigate. There is a lot of action, humor & plenty of red herrings to go around!

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  • Jan
  • 22-12-19

Good read!

UP-Michigan, cozy-mystery, television, camping, murder

Even if you've never read any of these Campground Mysteries, you won't feel out of the loop. This time the group of friends are vacationing in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan when they encounter cold wet weather, an invasive television crew, and murder, followed by even worse weather and. .. almost did a spoiler! Anyway, it is a good read made even better by having Michelle Babb to bring the characters to life with her narration.

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  • Melstamps
  • 17-12-19

Always Love Camping with Frannie

Real Actors, Not People (A Frannie Shoemaker Campground Mystery) by Karen Musser Northman is a fun, if lightweight, read. The book takes advantage of the longtime trend of “reality” television programs by having our intrepid band of campers’ current campground invaded by the cast and crew of a potential reality show, Celebrity Campout. There is some real fun to be had at the expense of the so-called celebrities and crew and Frannie is frequently smack in the middle of the action. 
While there is a murder and a mystery to be solved, the strength and pleasure of this book, and indeed the entire series, lies primarily in the vitality and interaction of the main characters. They are active, intelligent and enjoy life. This book shows off a very real slice of life and humanity and I enjoyed that very much. I hope the Shoemakers and the Ferraros will have many more adventures.
The narration by Michelle Babb is, as always, well done. I love that I can easily identify the characters based on her intonation. She truly gives the main characters life, especially Frannie.
I recommend this book for those who are looking for a lightweight, enjoyable read that provides some smiles along the way. Four Stars.
I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions stated are solely my own.

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  • Jenny’s review
  • 17-12-19

Jenny’s review

Frannie and Larry Shoemaker and their friends are on yet another adventure which will be exciting for sure. Let’s bring on a group of “has been actors” for a reality camping show with not so nice producers. What could go wrong? Everything apparently. Let’s say, storms, near death attempts and murder for good measure. Frannie is on the case when they find a body on their, see through bottom boat tour. Will Frannie be able to convince her husband Larry whom she believes is the real killer before it’s too late? Find out in book 8 “Real Actors not People” in the Frannie Shoemaker mysteries.

Thankfully Michelle Babb a very talented narrator and makes the characters seem so real that you should know them as your friends.

I received the audio version of this book for my honest review.:

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  • Terri C.
  • 14-12-19

Frannie and friends are back!

I listened to the audio version of this book. I really love this series. It's not what I usually go for, but Frannie and her friends and their camping really appeal to me for some reason. I love the whole concept of preparing meals and eating together and just being out in nature and exploring.
Of course, where Frannie is, a dead body shows up. This time it's someone involved with the reality TV show that is filming in the campground Frannie and her friends are staying. Frannie is on it!
I was trying to figure out what was different about this story and decided maybe it was that Frannie wasn't as "involved" with the police officers investigating. I'm not real sure, but there just didn't seem to be as much involvement in this story.
I enjoyed Ms. Babb's narration, as usual.
I was given a complimentary copy of this book. All thoughts are my own.

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  • Tammy Rea
  • 13-12-19

Another fun Frannie story!

This was so much fun to listen to! I always know I’m in for a treat when Frannie is around. The author, Karen, did a great job keeping me guessing until the end. Loved the setting of the story and the premise. The narrator did a fab job, too! Highly recommend this series.