I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.All the Right Reasons by Bethany Mangle
Published by Margaret K. McElderry Books on February 15, 2022
Genres: YA Contemporary
Source: the publisher
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The Bachelor meets Gilmore Girls in this laugh-out-loud young adult romance about a girl who joins her mother on a reality dating show for single parents—only to fall for a contestant’s son.
Cara Hawn’s life fell apart after her father cheated on her mother and got remarried to a woman Cara can’t stand. When Cara accidentally posts a rant about her father online, it goes viral—and catches the attention of the TV producers behind a new reality dating show for single parent families.
The next thing Cara and her mother know, they’ve been cast as leads on the show and are whisked away to sunny Key West where they’re asked to narrow a field of suitors and their kids down to one winning pair. All of this is outside of Cara’s comfort zone, from the meddling producers to the camera-hungry contestants, especially as Cara and her mother begin to clash on which suitors are worth keeping around. And then comes Connor.
As the son of a contestant, Connor is decidedly off-limits. Except that he doesn’t fit in with the cutthroat atmosphere in all the same ways as Cara, and she can’t get him out of her head. Now Cara must juggle her growing feelings while dodging the cameras and helping her mom pick a bachelor they both love, or else risk fracturing their family even more for the sake of ratings. Maybe there’s a reason most people don’t date on TV.
This book was a lot of fun from the beginning to the end. Although it did have some emotional parts as well. First of all, Cara’s dad is a real piece of work. A lot of times stories want you to see that both parents have their own good sides. Not this one, you are rooting for Cara’s mom completely!
Now, while I do watch some reality tv, I don’t normally enjoy the dating shows. But I do enjoy reading about them for some strange reason when they are the story plotlines. I liked the twists and turns this one took. Even with the types of characters I expected from a reality tv show, there were still parts that surprised me and took the story in a little different direction than I had expected. I loved that!
And it isn’t all fun and games. There are some great emotional parts, both with what happens to Cara with her dad, but then even how her mom handles things on the show. Not to mention how mad the show’s producers made me at times, but you can see that it would totally be in their best interests to keep the show interesting by doing the things they do. While I wonder a bit at how her mom would behave the way she did, especially after she’d already been burned with the first husband, how could she trust someone so fake so easily over her own daughter, it did lead to some of the really perfect drama and emotions the story evoked.
A fun story, perfect little family and comedy for a YA story.