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Wednesday, April 29, 2020

The F List by Alessandra Torre

 A Review by Wendy
 4 What is Real Stars
* * * * 
Spoiler Free

Alessandra Torre wrote a book that has accomplished multiple perspectives and goals. At first look, you have a love story that definitely has a happily ever after. It will sometimes be funny, insightful of influencers, and have a story of two people who finally learn how to be truthful with each other. There were really strong moments of heart and layers of reasons why our characters do what they do.

But if you are willing, you will also experience first hand a serious look at what our current society thinks is important.
How The Actual F List of Fame, Fortune, and Followers has become the dream instead of accomplishments, talent, and hard work. It seemed to happen innocently with the access of cable and the internet.

In the past, seeing movie stars and famous people were only available at specific times like big award shows or staged photos. There was a control and that made it all the more rare and exciting. But with more access and many more award shows, the specialness wore off.

Which opened the door to other things capturing people's imagination. Videos happened, sex tapes, or fight a hot scandal. These then became ways for those they caught in action to become famous and before you knew it, a reality tv dynasty born.

Fast forward to now and how we all have access to put ourselves out there. There is no limit to who can become the next viral meme. This kind of instant fame has become one of the ways to feel important and validated. That can be fine...But it also can become something more than just being who you are.

With this in mind, Torre's The F List is perfect. It introduces us to two people who have very little in common. They cross paths when they were in high school at a party and both of them are impacted.

Our gal, Emma, comes from the wrong side of the tracks, has a crappy mother and father, and hasn't a clue of who she is. Her looks are not what she sees in the magazines or on Instagram. Nothing on her face fits and she knows it. How could she not, as she has been the target of the mean clicks so many times, it gets old.

It is one of those moments where Emma knew she made a mistake being talked into going to Cash's house party. She is right now being harrassed, circled by idiot guys making fun of her. In an instant, it stops because Cash sees what is happening and breaks it up by calling out the guys who worship him. Cash and Emma connect by just a gaze, an ask are you ok and her nod yes. Cash gets pulled away and that was that.

But that moment laid a foundation both held onto without either knowing. Years go by and Cash by being the child of a famous movie star becomes a popularity target and then the golden boy of influencers.

For Emma, her life was not so great. Still crappy and invisible. But Fate had something else in mind. Through a chain of specific unusual situations that happen around her, she is liberated, cut free, and able to pursue the life she always wanted...the one she saw every day on the internet, Twitter, and Instagram.

Emma was savvy and smart despite her parents and when her circumstances change, she goes about achieving her life goals with a vengeance. As she rises up the ladder of influencers/vloggers she finally is meeting Cash again. The results aren't what she thought it would be and strikes out causing her to become the Mean Girl with Capitals.

MTV has decided to do a house reality show and place Cash and Emma under the same roof. It is an offer both cannot refuse...and let the games begin.

And they do...captured on camera 24/7. There are people with their own agenda making sure the viewers get every snarky moment, romantic moment, and anything in between. We are privy to the manipulations by the producers and the house guests. We learn about how the pics are posed with the necessary products front and center per high paying contracts. It is all there.

There is also the real, not fake confusion Cash and Emma have about each other. This is where the love story lies. It is the the pleasure of watching how Cash and Emma start to see where they may have made assumptions and how to move past them.

Emma is a character who goes through a journey of self-discovery that spans years. It is this time in the house though that causes her to have the biggest leap and be a better person. Cash has had to deal with much and he grows too. He may have a hiccup but in the end, he is able to get it together.

This wouldn't be an Alessandra Torre book without the story being told in some unique ways, she does not disappoint. 

A gifted copy was provided by author/publisher for an honest review.

Alessandra Torre (AR Torre) is an award-winning New York Times bestselling author of twenty-two romance and suspense novels. In addition to writing, she is the creator of Alessandra Torre Ink - an online community of over 10,000 published and aspiring authors.

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