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Summary

Wealth, fame, and a real-life romance she never expected - 17-year-old Vaughn Bennett lands it all when she agrees to become a pop star's fake girlfriend in this smart, utterly addictive novel from number-one New York Times best-selling author Erin Watt.

Under ordinary circumstances, Oakley Ford and Vaughn Bennett would never even cross paths.

There's nothing ordinary about Oakley. This bad-boy pop star's got Grammy Awards, millions of fangirls, and a reputation as a restless, too-charming troublemaker. But with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry, and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley needs to show the world he's settling down - and who better to help him than Vaughn, a part-time waitress trying to help her family get by? The very definition of ordinary.

Posing as his girlfriend, Vaughn will overhaul Oakley's image from troublemaker to serious artist. In return for enough money to put her brothers through college, she can endure outlandish Hollywood parties and carefully orchestrated Twitter exchanges. She'll fool the paparazzi and the groupies. She might even start fooling herself a little.

Because when ordinary rules no longer apply, there's no telling what your heart will do....

©2017 Timeout LLC (P)2017 Harlequin Enterprises, Limited

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

C+ needs improvement

So I have to say that it took me a while to get into the story as the characters weren't relatable at first, that changed about halfway through the story but by then I wasn't as invested as I could've been. I like the idea of the story, it's not the first time that I've read a book with this kind of idea but it's not as well... Umm... Executed as others in this genre. The aforementioned unrelatable characters really damaged my interest as the reader, the story took a few hours before it got interesting but the biggest problem for me was the narrators. They just didn't sell it to me. They were dull, they lacked the ability to use an array of voices to bring each character to life. The woman made every man sound the same and the guy just sounded like he wanted to be somewhere else. I liked the second half of the book a lot but the first half dragged it down. The epilogue was also unnecessary, I feel as though a more personal ending would have made it feel more engaging. I wanted to know more about the aftermath of the story's climax and was left utterly disappointed. I liked it okay but I wouldn't listen to this again.

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Innocence rules ok !!

A five star story from Erin who never fails to write "page turners". Entertaining and not relying on sex to sell the story this book was funny and also eye opening to the world of show business. I lovely intro of angst into the back of the story kept my interest and the little twist made things real instead of a " fairy tale" . Highly recommended like allher books I've read.

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  • A. oconnell
  • 07-06-17

Enjoy the story but not the voices

I thought the story was sweet and I enjoyed it. Not my all-time favorite book but enjoyable nonetheless easy to listen to and not a lot of angst.

What I did not like was the voice choices I thought they made Vaughn sound whiny and overly dramatic and Oakley's voice and accent did not match at all what I think it should've been. He had some sort of Midwestern Twang which I thought odd for somebody who supposed to be a 20-year-old southern California boy

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Margaret
  • 18-06-17

Just perfect

I wouldn't change a thing, I was smiling throughout the whole listen, just completely perfect :)

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ryan Hooey
  • 12-03-18

Lights, camera, action!!

Starting out I picked this audiobook because of the narrators, but from the first chapter I was just caught up in it. The storyline is thrilling, the characters are young, sassy and vulnerable. The author does a great job of not sugar coating what young adults know and don’t know about sex. She also incorporates the social media craze in a truthful and practical way. At the start of most chapters there would be a screen name and a tweet or post that is very close to the truth, with the brutal or jealous tone it is written in. Our characters are from opposite worlds and have very different personalities. It was really awesome to see the internal struggle they have for each other’s situation and their feelings toward their lifestyle. The change in each over the course of the audiobook is great and well written. The ending is also neatly wrapped up. It is a rom com style of book so you will be able to guess the ending before starting the story, but that is not why you listen to this type of book. It is all about the journey and this one is brilliantly done. It is written in a rotating 2 POV narration. Each is labelled Him and Her. Both narrators do a fabulous job. They both do an extraordinary job of voicing the opposite gender. There are a few more racier scenes in the book (nothing too bad though) that would have had to be extremely difficult to keep in character and they both do a great job. This was my second audiobook by Caitlin Kelly and she is rapidly moving up my favs list with her sarcastic and snarky performances. You really get the feeling she puts her all into her performances. Teddy Hamilton voices the character of a over privledged teen superstar to perfection. Is voice shows arrogance when it has to and vulnerability as well. Both narrators and the author are now on my watch list. Overall, an excellent listening experience.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Avid Ebook Reader and Audio Book Listener
  • 16-08-17

Heartwarming & Real

Where does When It's Real rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I really love the narrator's. They really made the book come alive. I loved the voice of both of the characters in the book.

What other book might you compare When It's Real to and why?

I would compare this book to any sweet YA/NA book where there is a HEA and a tad bit of drama.

What about Caitlin Kelly and Teddy Hamilton ’s performance did you like?

OMG, I love Caitlin Kelly!! She is such a good narrator. Love her voices. Her girls sound like girls and her guys have a very nice raspy timber to them to make it sound like a young man speaking.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Its a feel good book. It did not make me cry, but laugh in a few places. It's a guilty pleasure to give you the 'feels'.

Any additional comments?

Love Erin Watts. She doesn't have a ton of books out there yet, but I have a gut feeling she will go very far. Loved the Royals books and I cannot wait to see the next chapter on Easton's story. I would love to read more books similar to this theme and the Royals from Ms. Watts. Read'em you won't be disappointed.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kate
  • 30-07-17

Loved it!

This one is not as messed up as the Paper Princess series, but it's just as powerful. I totally enjoyed this stand alone live story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Joey
  • 26-04-18

All the feels!

Love this author and book! Definitely recommend. It has just the right amount of everything.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Ellie Waters
  • 13-04-18

Rush to the end?

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Yes

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

I felt like the closing conflict was resolved too quickly without fully developing it.

Any additional comments?

It was a good story but not that original. Fun enough listen.

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  • jmatt
  • 12-02-18

Easy read

Super quick and easy to read! Great story line in you are into teen drama. Light hearted but impossible to put down!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sherian Burt
  • 30-01-18

I loved it!!

When I started to listen to the book I really didn't think that it was going to be good, just another cheesy romance books about a worldwide pop star and girl that needs money but no. Yes it was kind of cheesy but as it went along the book got cute. I had one problem and that was the ending of the book. I felt that it was rushed but still better than must books. I would recommend this book to people that want to listen to a book that is looking for a cheesy book where to people go through heart breaks that found each other.

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  • HappyCow
  • 26-01-18

predictable but cute

We already know how it's going to end from the beginning but it's still a nice, enjoyable read.