I am an HGTV and reality TV fan, so when I saw this book with its striking cover and reality TV home renovation plot – I had to buy it.
It’s too bad that the book wasn’t as good as its lovely cover, and the enticing back cover blurb led me to believe it would be. Some of the flaws:
Convoluted plot: The plot gets a little confusing, involving lots of briefly mentioned side characters and real estate terminology that isn’t well explained. Even though the plot mostly unfolded over a few days, it dragged in the middle.
“No one appreciates being treated like a dirty tissue, tossed in the trash after being used.”Sarah Strohmeyer, We Love to Entertain
Format challenges: The alternating perspectives don’t have much of a purpose. Erika Turnbull is the main character, so her perspective makes sense, but the addition of her mother, Kim’s viewpoint, comes across as an obvious storytelling device rather than an integrated part of the story. I didn’t care for Holly and Robert’s blog posts either – they were repetitive, written in an annoying tone, and generally made me like the characters even less.
Poor character development: Speaking of the annoying characters, these people come across like some of our least favorite reality TV stars. There’s not much there behind their fake smiles and the veneers we see onscreen. Their personalities and backstories are so thinly portrayed that I had trouble mustering any sympathy for or interest in what they were going through.
Ultimately, this book was a miss for me. It read like a low-budget reality show with lots of filler and hype, building up to a disappointing big reveal.