[ARC Review] When It’s Real by Erin Watt

Amy's Reviews, ARC Reviews 0 Comments 25th May, 2017

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

[ARC Review] When It’s Real by Erin WattWhen It's Real by Erin Watt
Published by Harlequin Teen on May 30, 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 416
Source: Netgalley, Publisher
Wealth, fame and a real-life romance she never expected—seventeen-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 #1 New York Times bestselling author duo 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…

I don’t think I have stayed up all night reading a book in one sitting in a while. I have to say after my all night binge read, When It’s Real is fantastic!

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I have to admit I really wanted to read this book because I love Erin Watt. I know the description sounds really cheesy almost like Justin Bieber fan fiction. I am here to say that this book is super good and super addictive. I fell in with Vaughn and Oakley so much that I could not this book down. Even though this book is about a 17 year old “normal” being paid to date a bad pop star for his image it is a story about love and finding people who support you for you.


I firmly believe that entertainers are people too. There is an appropriate time to fan all over famous people like when they working aka concerts, conventions and etc. Times when you as a fan have paid for their time and they are therefore working. Inappropriate times are when they are out for a quiet jog with their dog or out to dinner with their S/O. I thought this book did a good job of showing the highs and lows of being a celebrity. When It’s Real starts out as a hate to love story. I loved that Vaughn having grown up in LA knows this about celebrities and she is not impressed by Oakley and his antics and gives him attitude.


It is also a story about a young girl that is way too grown up and boy who still has a lot of growing to do. Sometimes age is just a number but it is how we live our life with maturity that I think determines if you are a grown up. Vaughn has helped her older sister raise her little brothers since her parents died. She didn’t get that carefree teenage experience. Oakley was born a celebrity, the son of famous actors, and he has been a pop star since he was 14. Both of these characters need each other. I loved watching them fall in love. I think it was said best in the classic movie Gidget, “To be a real woman is to bring out the best in a man.” This applies to both partners because I think Vaughn and Oakley bring out the best in each other.


I know I am gushing but really, When It’s Real is such a good story. I cannot recommend it enough.

Written by Amy Gilman

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