About The Book:
Reality TV has a dark future in this thought-provoking thriller
To the people suffering on the war-torn mainland, Bliss Island seems like an idyllic place. And it is: except for the fact that the island is a set, and the islanders’ lives are a performance. They’re the stars of a hit TV show, Blissful Days—Characters are adored by mainland viewers, yet in constant danger of being cut if their ratings dip too low. And no one really knows what happens to cut Characters.
Nettie Starling knows she’s been given the chance of a lifetime when a producer offers suggestions to help her improve her mediocre ratings—especially when those suggestions involve making a move on the boy she’s been in love with for years. But she’ll soon have to decide how far she’s willing to go to keep the cameras fixed on her. . . especially when she learns what could happen to her if she doesn’t.
I’m not a huge fan of reality TV, but I know people who definitely are. The concept behind Scripted is a really unique one, and the closest thing I’ve seen done before is A Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M O’Brien (my review here) which, as you might remember, I was not a fan of. Scripted, on the other hand, was stellar. There are so many different aspects of this book, and I really hope that you end up reading it.
The first thing about this book is the main character, Nettie. She isn’t anything like most of the reality TV stars on television these days. She isn’t even close to perfect. She’s awkward, and quirky. She makes mistakes, and she owns up to them. She’s REAL. Also unlike most reality TV stars, she isn’t so certain that she wants her life to be on TV. The television show that her island stars in, Blissful Days, watches every move she makes. Nettie was never incredibly popular, and she knows that the viewers don’t like her nearly as much her best friend, Lia.
The slow-burning romance between Nettie and another Character, Callen was sweet and awkward. Nettie has secretly liked Callen for years, but he has been dating the uber-popular Lia. When they break up, the producers suggest that Nettie going after Callen would increase her rankings.
The island of Bliss is seemingly perfect on the exterior. No one is poor, no one is starving, and it is a safe haven compared to the mainland. I really liked this island and–more specifically–the secrets within. The plot twist at the end really surprised me, and I couldn’t wait to keep reading.
One of my only complaints is the ending, really. I felt like everything was wrapped up much too nicely. Bliss is the whole world to Nettie and her comrades, and everything they believe to be true just might be a lie. I like a satisfying ending as much as the next bookworm, but I expected a few more loose ends. Everything was wrapped up so perfectly.
As I said before, I don’t watch a lot of reality television, but I love the dark futuristic concept behind this story. If you do like reality television, I expect that you’ll like this book just as much (if not more) than me! It has also been pitched as Lost meets The Hunger Games, and I think that’s a great way to put it. A great read!
About The Author:
I went through a reality TV junkie phase and was intrigued by its evolution–from seeming somewhat authentic to totally scripted. I started out with the idea of teens on a show who received individual ratings marks and would be cut if if those marks fell too low. Then I moved to the idea of two girls, one who finds it effortless to keep her ratings up and one for whom its quite difficult. Everything else grew out of that, not necessarily in the most straightforward way.