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I received an ARC of this book via Little, Brown Book Group UK and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Marcus has a secret. While he may be the star of the biggest show on TV, he’s also a prolific fan fiction writer. Through his stories, Marcus releases his frustrations with the show, but if anyone ever found out about his online persona, he’d be fired. Immediately.
April has secrets of her own. A hardcore fan of Marcus’s show, she’s long hidden her fanfic and cosplay hobby from her ‘real life’ – but not anymore. When she dares to post her latest costume creation on Twitter, her plus-size take goes viral. And when Marcus asks her out to spite her critics, truth officially becomes stranger than (fan) fiction . . .
On their date, Marcus quickly realises that he wants much more from April than a one-time publicity stunt. But with so many secrets between them, can they ever stop hiding, or will a match made in fandom never make it in real life?
As a former writer of some (admittedly pretty poor) fan-fiction, and a lover of another book which incorporates the world within – ( and outside of)- fan fiction (Fangirl, if you must know), Spoiler Alert immediately appealed to me – without even reading it.
When I did look past the description, and the cute pink cover, I saw the book for more than just an exploration into a genre of fiction that a lot of us don’t pay attention to (but definitely should, because there are some great works out there!), it was about two people, who they are on the outside and who they are on the inside – as well as the struggle to be themselves.
Ok, so it feels very story-I’ve-tried-to-write-on-Wattpad in its premise because, let’s face it, it’s not every day a celebrity falls in love with us normal folk (I wish, though) but this doesn’t take away from this being a very sweet story. It was interesting to see, through conversations both online and off, the relationship between April and Marcus develop. It took me a while to process their relationship but, when I did, I fell in love with them and their love.
There’s more to this story than love and fanfic writing, though, you’ll find as you read on. Both characters go through complicated family dynamics and really have to figure out who they are, which was honest and raw and real.
I’m all for different people being represented in fiction. I’m used to – and quite frankly tired of – seeing the same person in the narratives. April is plus-sized, and whilst her size is important to the plot at times and the relationship, I’m glad Dade gave her more than just being the “fat girl”. She’s funny, knows what she wants but she isn’t afraid to be vulnerable either. I think Marcus, once the layers of fame were unpicked, fit her character perfectly.
Another thing I loved about this was the sex. I don’t mean to sound perverse when I say that but I did. Usually, I skip those bits or squirm through them (don’t know why I just feel dead awkward reading sex scenes!), but I didn’t with this one. The sex was intense, sometimes a bit clumsy and honest – plus I like the turn in fiction now that writers focus on both people getting pleasure out of sex. Very important!
The only thing that spoiled my reading is I thought the characters were younger. This isn’t anything to do with the author, or against her, it was just me being stupid! It didn’t ruin my reading experience exactly but I did confuse me a bit at times.
A light, fun read – perfect for fans of Fangirl – which is available to purchase right now (I actually finished the ARC today, just a day late of the publication.
You can buy Spoiler Alert on Book Depository (also available from other booksellers)
What have you been reading recently? I’d love to chat in the comments 😊.
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