Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Next Big Thing by Johanna Edwards

I’ve been slacking big time in the blogging department! There’s been so much going on with the holidays and buying a new car…and my ‘mild’ obsession with Legos Star Wars on the Wii that I’ve neglected my dear, little, old blog. Whoa is me.

Alas, the first book I read off my 2010 book list was “The Next Big Thing” by Johanna Edwards. If you have an interest in reality television, particularly ones centered on weight loss, then this book is for you! It was a very easy and entertaining read. I actually really enjoyed it and looked forward to my lengthy commute home so I could dive in. It was literally like a soap opera in print!

“The Next Big Thing” is about an overweight girl, named Kat, from Tennessee. This book delivers nothing short of dramatic situations – from her internet relationship with a European hottie, to her stint on the reality television series, From Fat to Fabulous. I’m not one to judge internet relationships – that’s how I met my boyfriend of 2.5 years! However, I did not lie to my boyfriend about my looks – Kat did. She had Mr. European Vogue convinced she was a size 4 skinny minnie – oops! She had good intentions though. Kat’s plan was to finally lose her weight by trying out for the reality show, and then meet up with her boy toy after the show was over. The book goes through the trials and tribulations of getting cast for a reality tv series, then once Kat is accepted onto the show, it’s a lot of pages surrounding her life in the From Fat to Fabulous house. The House can be thought of as a Real World type setting – where there are only about 6 girls who live in it and are competing for the prize of the most weight lost, plus a nice chunk of change to go along with it. There’s the same type of drama that happens as well – there’s a vixen, an innocent one, a few normal people, and woman who blames her 7 year old child for her weight gain. What I found interesting about the depiction of the Show was, when relating it back to reality shows we watch on TV today, you forget that there is a lot of downtime off camera. On the show, they had the ladies play games, and planted little seeds for dramatic encounters to ensue, but overall there was a lot of time where they’re just in the house doing nothing. Yeah, they can work out (and are supposed to given the premise of the show), but they don’t have TV, books, magazines, etc to entertain themselves – they just have each other. And in this case, that’s not a good thing b/c Kat doesn’t get along with most of them.

By the end of the book, and the Show, a few wrenches are thrown into the loop. Other reviews have said the ending was so predictable – I, for one, did not predict the ending. I won’t spoil it for you unless you really care to know though – send me a message if you do!

Overall, I really liked the book. On a scale of 1 – 5, I’m giving it a 3. It was a good chick-lit style novel and had me wanting more!

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