Reality Jane
by Shannon Nering
(Bancroft Press, $15.95, PG) 978-1-61088-028-2
Jane Kaufman is a small town part-time news journalist with a dream of becoming a big time Hollywood executive producer, but hasnít been able to get that big break sheís been looking for. After years of trying to make it, she finally gets the call to be a TV producer on the reality show The Purrfect Life staring a super spoiled former Purr Magazine star. Jane thinks she can handle anything, so this opportunity is just what she needs.

As a stranger in a foreign city, Jane befriends all her new co-workers, and is excited for this new life that she is building. Jane quickly learns that not everyone can be trusted as a friend when she gets snubbed out of an end of shoot party. She acts like a child though and confronts the girls about being slighted and then goes to the executive producer and tattletales to get the girls in trouble. Is this really reality? Sounds like teenager antics to me.

Jane is good at her job and the big wigs definitely notice. She gets promoted to a producer on a bigger reality show following the ďitĒ glamour couple traipsing across Europe. She canít wait to go. Her boyfriend just dumped her and this opportunity will get her far away from memories of him. And who doesnít want to spend a few months living at a castle in France surrounded by a crew full of men?

Reality Jane is included in the contemporary romance category, but there is very little romance. Jane is involved with several men throughout the book, but the reader isnít made part of those connections. The story is written in first person and is taken along Janeís journey in her professional goals. This is the main plot of the book. Romance is a distant second, so in that regard it is disappointing.

The first third of the book doesnít seem real. The childish behavior is very bothersome for someone who is supposedly professional. After getting past that first third, the story is much more believable and entertaining. Jane becomes a character to root for and the entertainment industry is portrayed in a way that is understandable.

If you are looking for a contemporary womenís fiction book, then Reality Jane is worth the read.

--Nichole Howell

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