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Celebrity pop star dating a normal girl is a very common formula in rom-com movies. But When It’s Real has a refreshing quality to it. Maybe it’s the He said, She Said POV that gives readers a glimpse of both the characters but especially of Oakley, of what it actually is like to live as a super popular star. How often he yearns for something normal, how most things about his life is controlled by managers and publicists, how he could never get out of his house without his bodyguards. That’s very accurately portrayed and quite believable which also makes it believable that Oak and his team would pay 20,000 bucks for a normal girl like Vaughn to fake-date Oak.
Indeed, the plot is fast-paced, entertaining, often swoony and sweet, several places more than sweet so definitely read with caution, preferably if you’re 17 and up. But just like the recent novel I’ve read from this author duo, Erin Watt, this is a surprisingly pleasant YA romance and I look forward to more books they release in the future.