Book Review: Everybody Knows Your Name by Andrea Seigel & Brent Bradshaw (ARC)

Everybody Knows Your Name by Andrea Seigel and Brent BradshawAuthors: Andrea Seigel & Brent Bradshaw
Genre: Young adult, contemporary
Publisher: Viking
Publication Date: March 10, 2015
352 pages, hardcover

Check out the full synopsis on Goodreads.

Thank you to the lovely ladies at On the Same Pages ARC Tours for including me in this tour!

Everybody Knows Your Name is essentially about two people who are contestants on a reality show that is basically a mix between American Idol and The Real World, which is more interesting than it sounds, promise.

But that’s not all (or even most) of what this book is about. Rather than giving all of its attention to the reality TV/faux celebrity aspect, this book focuses on real-life developments and the self-discovery that can happen when you’re in the spotlight. Everybody Knows Your Name is way more introspective, thoughtful, and relatable than I was expecting of a book that could easily have been filled with childish, petty, celebrity drama. I was really impressed with it.

The characters are well-developed and distinctive, even the minor characters felt like someone I could run into somewhere out in the real world. Well, some of them were only ones you’d come across in Hollywood, which isn’t necessarily the realest place. Magnolia and Ford, our main characters, were relatable and I found myself really liking Magnolia for her desire to be exactly who she is and no one else. The romance was pretty much instalove, which you guys know I despise, but it didn’t bother me as much for some reason.

One thing I think was missing from the book was a little more from the reality show – I wanted to see how they felt on stage during eliminations and performances. I wanted to see a few more of those performances, even just a few lines about what the minor characters were like on stage. I think a lot of the book just kind of gleamed over all of that, which felt like a strange thing to take out. However, the focus on what it’s like in reality TV and the way that people can obsess with any kind of “celebrity” was so so true.

The bottom line: Everybody Knows Your Name is way more deep and thoughtful than I was expecting, but in the best way. I loved getting to know these characters and I was rooting for them both on the show and in the way they were changing. I liked the open ending (for the most part) and the appendixes really added to the story. This book is perfect for fans of reality television and realistic characters.

Rating: 7.5 – between pretty good and freaking fantastic