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This Is Not the Real World

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In the explosive, thrilling sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show, 18-year-old Jess is out for revenge as she confronts the corrupt media empire that documented every moment of her childhood. Finally free of Swickley and a life that was broadcast to the whole world on Stuck in the 90's, Jess is doing her best to adjust to existence on the outside–but she can't outrun her pas In the explosive, thrilling sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show, 18-year-old Jess is out for revenge as she confronts the corrupt media empire that documented every moment of her childhood. Finally free of Swickley and a life that was broadcast to the whole world on Stuck in the 90's, Jess is doing her best to adjust to existence on the outside–but she can't outrun her past forever. Like-Life Productions has tracked down Jess and her boyfriend, Kipps, and forced Kipps to come back to set for the rest of his contract. Determined to rescue Kipps and exact revenge on Like-Life Productions for what they did to her, Jess teams up with a reporter who's investigating the seedy underbelly of the TV production company–including a series of suspicious disappearances. Jess agrees to return to set under the guise of missing her friends, family, and old life. Then she can take them down from the inside. Jess must play along in order to gain the power she needs to expose the truth–but fact and fiction blur as Jess struggles to stay one step ahead of Like-Life Productions. How far will she go to maintain control of the narrative, and what will it cost her? Packed with twists that race toward a shocking ending, this second book will keep you guessing.


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In the explosive, thrilling sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show, 18-year-old Jess is out for revenge as she confronts the corrupt media empire that documented every moment of her childhood. Finally free of Swickley and a life that was broadcast to the whole world on Stuck in the 90's, Jess is doing her best to adjust to existence on the outside–but she can't outrun her pas In the explosive, thrilling sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show, 18-year-old Jess is out for revenge as she confronts the corrupt media empire that documented every moment of her childhood. Finally free of Swickley and a life that was broadcast to the whole world on Stuck in the 90's, Jess is doing her best to adjust to existence on the outside–but she can't outrun her past forever. Like-Life Productions has tracked down Jess and her boyfriend, Kipps, and forced Kipps to come back to set for the rest of his contract. Determined to rescue Kipps and exact revenge on Like-Life Productions for what they did to her, Jess teams up with a reporter who's investigating the seedy underbelly of the TV production company–including a series of suspicious disappearances. Jess agrees to return to set under the guise of missing her friends, family, and old life. Then she can take them down from the inside. Jess must play along in order to gain the power she needs to expose the truth–but fact and fiction blur as Jess struggles to stay one step ahead of Like-Life Productions. How far will she go to maintain control of the narrative, and what will it cost her? Packed with twists that race toward a shocking ending, this second book will keep you guessing.

30 review for This Is Not the Real World

  1. 5 out of 5

    Sylvie

    3.5 out of 5 stars. This may only be a wishful thinking but I'm really hoping for a third book. 3.5 out of 5 stars. This may only be a wishful thinking but I'm really hoping for a third book.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Creya

    Thank you to the author and Quirk Books for providing a physical copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The second book in a series can sometimes be weird. We know who our characters are, but maybe some parts of our story are still unclear. We are usually thinking, "Can this book REALLY be as good as the first?" For Anna Carey's sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show, the answer is YES! Just like the first book, Carey gives us so much suspense and many juicy details regarding the televis Thank you to the author and Quirk Books for providing a physical copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The second book in a series can sometimes be weird. We know who our characters are, but maybe some parts of our story are still unclear. We are usually thinking, "Can this book REALLY be as good as the first?" For Anna Carey's sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show, the answer is YES! Just like the first book, Carey gives us so much suspense and many juicy details regarding the television show Jess Flynn was forced into at birth. Even after her escape from the Stuck in the '90s television set, Like-Life Productions's manipulation tactics did not stop. Tired of watching her friends suffer, she decides to return to the set in the name of revenge. While it did take my brain a little bit to catch up and remember all of the events that transpired in book one, I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I could even see there being a third installment. 😉 It was a fun, quick read that was simple yet engaging.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Vee_Bookish

    "I had to remind myself no-one had orchestrated it, that there was no-one behind a monitor somewhere waiting for Kipps to deliver a line that had been written for him. This was my life, as I wanted it to be. Kipps and I had created this." A year after binge reading This Is Not The Jess Show in one day, I finally got to know what happened to Jess next, after she got out of the Life Like Productions set and ran away with her boyfriend, Kipps. We get to finally see the real Sara, Jess's sort of sist "I had to remind myself no-one had orchestrated it, that there was no-one behind a monitor somewhere waiting for Kipps to deliver a line that had been written for him. This was my life, as I wanted it to be. Kipps and I had created this." A year after binge reading This Is Not The Jess Show in one day, I finally got to know what happened to Jess next, after she got out of the Life Like Productions set and ran away with her boyfriend, Kipps. We get to finally see the real Sara, Jess's sort of sister, and her mother, as they try to hide from the production team. Of course, this sees Jess come back to Life Like Productions and the home she thought she knew. It was strange seeing it from a different angle, finally finding out the secret exits the cast had used and what they did outside of the show. I'm still not sure if the ending felt a little lacking, or if I just wasn't ready to leave the characters yet. I know I would very much like one more book, to see what the whole cast did next and there's room for it, especially as we left Jess waiting for Kipps to come home.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Emma Ann

    2.5, rounded up. A fun, light read that asks, “What if Truman had to go back to the Truman Show knowing it was all a lie?” A bit rushed, but depending on how quickly paced you like your books, that could be either a bug or a feature. Thank you to Quirk Books for providing the book!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Opal (shesreading)

    [To read more reviews and see more bookish content visit my blog >>> https://www.shesreading.blog] Thank you to Quirk Book Publishing for kindly sending me this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my review whatsoever. ✰✰✰✰/5 🌶🌶/5 “We couldn't go back to being friends, because what we'd had wasn't a friendship. It was a job for her, lying to me all of those years.” ~Some Quick Stats~ Overall: 4/5 Stars Characters: 5/5 Setting: 4/5 Writing: 4/5 Plot and Themes: 3.5/5 Awesomeness [To read more reviews and see more bookish content visit my blog >>> https://www.shesreading.blog] Thank you to Quirk Book Publishing for kindly sending me this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my review whatsoever. ✰✰✰✰/5 🌶🌶/5 “We couldn't go back to being friends, because what we'd had wasn't a friendship. It was a job for her, lying to me all of those years.” ~Some Quick Stats~ Overall: 4/5 Stars Characters: 5/5 Setting: 4/5 Writing: 4/5 Plot and Themes: 3.5/5 Awesomeness Factor: 5/5 This is Not the Real World by Anna Carey is the thrilling sequel to This is Not the Jess Show. The book takes many dark twists and turns, turning 90’s nostalgia into something else. This conclusion to the duology was a fast-paced read that kept me engaged and on the edge of my seat. I read this whenever I could. However, the book didn't fully meet my expectations which is why it, unfortunately, did not receive the whole 5 stars. ~Characters~ This book followed Jess, our main character as she continued to navigate through the manipulative and abusive production company that produced the show, she unknowingly acted on for 14 years. There wasn’t much development on her part, but I didn’t mind that because the other characters' development made up for it. Characters that we didn’t get much information on in the previous book (Chrysalis, Kipps, Amber, etc.) were focused on in this one. I got to learn so much more about each character and see how they evolved throughout the book, plus how the production company affected them as well. One thing I personally struggled with was that there were a lot of characters to keep track of. I repeatedly had to flip back to previous pages to figure out who people were. However, at the same time, I did enjoy having development with each character and how the characters weren’t just there to fill a spot. ~Plot~ This was a relatively fast-paced book, much like its previous book, This is Not The Jess Show. The plot also included so many events that took place immediately after each other. It definitely succeeded at being a thriller, because I was wide-eyed and clutching the book tightly in shock for most of the read. Those plot twists were phenomenal! Anna Carey really is a true master at thrilling the reader. The book is only about 300 pages long, but I feel that extending it by a couple of hundred pages would allow events to be portrayed in more detail and leave fewer questions when the book ended. The plot also got quite chaotic near the end, with events overlapping and constant surprises. I wouldn’t say this was necessarily a bad thing, but it wasn’t a good thing either. ~Would I Recommend It?~ Overall, I would recommend this book! Actually, I recommend the duology as a whole. The books were thrilling, exciting and a wonderful ride to take. The sequel gave what needed to be given even though it didn't necessarily meet my expectations. I can’t wait to re-read this duology! ~Conclusion~ In conclusion, this was a delightful read and I can’t wait for it to be released so everyone experiences the same thrill that I did! Releases May 24, 2022 Pre Order ➡️ amazon.com/thisisnottherealworld-anna... Follow The Author ➡️ annacareybooks.com Follow Quirk Books ➡️ quirkbooks.com ~Pre-Review~ now THAT was a lot of damage Review to come.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Nicole Wuthering Vines

    This was an enjoyable and entertaining follow up to This Is Not The Jess Show! Sequels can be hard to review sometimes as we’re always comparing them to the first and while I will admit a tiny bit of the magic was lost with this one, it was still a solidly fun continuation! I really liked that this one gave us some more detailed background information and character development and it was a suspenseful ride as we dove deeper into this new “world” and its hidden truths and secrets! I flew through th This was an enjoyable and entertaining follow up to This Is Not The Jess Show! Sequels can be hard to review sometimes as we’re always comparing them to the first and while I will admit a tiny bit of the magic was lost with this one, it was still a solidly fun continuation! I really liked that this one gave us some more detailed background information and character development and it was a suspenseful ride as we dove deeper into this new “world” and its hidden truths and secrets! I flew through this quick and amusing story in a day and certainly recommend this series!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Danielle Kaitlin (daniallreads)

    90’s Nostalgia ✔️ Dystopian Future ✔️ Reads like a Movie ✔️ This is Not the Real World is the sequel to Anna Carey’s This is Not the Jess Show and she continues to take us on a wild ride that is the real-life sitcom Stuck in the 90’s. We follow Jess and Kipps after they escape from the set of the television show when things take quite a turn for the worse. Kipps gets captured and the pair end up back under the grips of Chrysalis, the head producer on the show. I flew through this series. It’s extr 90’s Nostalgia ✔️ Dystopian Future ✔️ Reads like a Movie ✔️ This is Not the Real World is the sequel to Anna Carey’s This is Not the Jess Show and she continues to take us on a wild ride that is the real-life sitcom Stuck in the 90’s. We follow Jess and Kipps after they escape from the set of the television show when things take quite a turn for the worse. Kipps gets captured and the pair end up back under the grips of Chrysalis, the head producer on the show. I flew through this series. It’s extremely bingeable. I found myself constantly picking up the book wanting to know what was going to happen next. The ethics and question of morals is what I found most intriguing about both of these books. You don’t often find books that have you questioning the reality of life. These make you think deeply about what is going on behind the scenes of Hollywood. Are we living amongst a world that treats our favorite celebrities unsavory? Is there a chance that our future could be similar to how Anna Carey wrote it to be? This Not the Real World covers a television production company taking over the world due to the advancement in entertainment and technology. These stories made me think deeply about what science, technology, entertainment and life is going to shape itself into. What is going on currently in our world that is being enhanced that could create a controversy and be questionable when it comes to ethics? This makes me think deeply about conspiracies around DNA testing kits like 23 and Me. What could these people do with our DNA in the future to make our world easier and more convenient? I think that if Anna Carey wrote these books for adults, they could have been five stars. The young adult plot makes the best parts about the story feel juvenile. I loved Kipps and Jess’s young romance, it was a very cute addition and helped give the reader someone to root for. I really feel that Carey missed her chance on making a hit series by going for a younger audience. This series is great! Adults can get nostalgia from all the 90’s references but it is catered to people who are fans of dystopian science-fiction. I highly recommend it for fans of Black Mirror with a little cross of young adult drama like Riverdale. #QOTD: What is one trend from the 90’s that you think should come back?

  8. 4 out of 5

    Caitlin

    Thanks to the publisher for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review This Is Not the Real World is a great sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show. The novel picks up a few months after the end of Jess Show. Most sequels are sometimes unnecessary, as the first book completely resolves the story and character arcs. This is not the case with Real World. Real World resolves both the story as well as Jess’s journey and relationship with the show. This book is very fast paced. I think it would hav Thanks to the publisher for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review This Is Not the Real World is a great sequel to This Is Not the Jess Show. The novel picks up a few months after the end of Jess Show. Most sequels are sometimes unnecessary, as the first book completely resolves the story and character arcs. This is not the case with Real World. Real World resolves both the story as well as Jess’s journey and relationship with the show. This book is very fast paced. I think it would have been better to draw the story out more as to further explore the inner workings of the show, its audience, and to create more tension between Jess and the main antagonist, the show’s creator, Chrysalis. I really love the novel’s setting. It's set in a future riddled with natural disasters and general depression. The show is set in the 90s, serving as a nostalgia trip to help the world cope with their present. In Jess Show we got to see how the set functioned as Jess’s life, while now in Real World, we get to see how it functions to be an efficient filming set. Unraveling the setting by pointing out hidden doors and cameras helps to illustrate the wrongness of everything, and reflects back to Jess’s entire life, and her not knowing any of this. This Is Not the Real World is a great sequel, and expands upon its first book very well. If you read This Is Not the Jess Show, I highly recommend you check this one out.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    an amazing finale to such a fun series

  10. 5 out of 5

    Beary Into Books

    Rating: 3.75 Author: @annacareybooks Publication Date: 5/24/22 I really enjoyed this follow up but since it is a sequel I am going to keep my review short to avoid giving too much away! Just like the first book this one was a quick read and you will be rushing to get to the end. I felt so bad for Jess in the first one. I couldn’t even imagine going through what she did and trying to move on from what she learned. How she will ever learn to trust again is beyond me. I don’t think I’d be able to trus Rating: 3.75 Author: @annacareybooks Publication Date: 5/24/22 I really enjoyed this follow up but since it is a sequel I am going to keep my review short to avoid giving too much away! Just like the first book this one was a quick read and you will be rushing to get to the end. I felt so bad for Jess in the first one. I couldn’t even imagine going through what she did and trying to move on from what she learned. How she will ever learn to trust again is beyond me. I don’t think I’d be able to trust anyone after what happened! Curious? Go read the first one then read this one! The world building continued being interesting and it was nice learning even more about the side characters/organizations. The author did a great job of describing everything making the reader feel as though they were right there with Jess. Overall, I would recommend this book especially if you enjoyed the first one. *Thank you @quirkbooks for sending me a #gifted copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own* #partner

  11. 4 out of 5

    Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)

    After really loving This Is Not the Jess Show, I was super excited to get to the sequel to find out what the heck will happen to Jess next. Now- if you have not read Jess Show, you should just... leave and go do that. Because inevitably, this will contain some form of spoiler for the first book. It's simply impossible to discuss this one at all without at least some spoiler territory for Book 1. So off you go. Just kidding, never leave me. Okay, so. If you have read the first book, we pick up not After really loving This Is Not the Jess Show, I was super excited to get to the sequel to find out what the heck will happen to Jess next. Now- if you have not read Jess Show, you should just... leave and go do that. Because inevitably, this will contain some form of spoiler for the first book. It's simply impossible to discuss this one at all without at least some spoiler territory for Book 1. So off you go. Just kidding, never leave me. Okay, so. If you have read the first book, we pick up not too long after Jess has escaped, fully into 2037, where she has to kind of learn how the heck the world works now. It's pretty interesting in that respect, because imagine the internet barely exists one day, and the next, you literally have access to the world on your phone. Obviously it's even a little more technologically advanced than we are now, since it is 15 years in the future. I definitely enjoyed that aspect of the story, Jess learning to live in the actual world. Still, the producers of the show don't care much about what Jess wants. They want their show to make money, and fans want to see Jess back. To see the fallout from her knowing that she was lied to and betrayed her whole life, that she never even knew what millennium she was living in. Kipps is still 17, so he ends up being forced back to the set. And sure Jess could let him go it alone, but she's not about that. Plus, there have been some mysterious staff disappearances, and the group trying to find out what is going on could benefit greatly by having Jess as an inside man. So, back she goes. The production lady high key reminded me of Dr. Crazyflakes (thanks Beth for inventing her perfect name) from The Wilds. Cares zero percent about kids' lives, as long as she is reaching her endgame. Making bank here is just like Dr. C insisting she has a great study that will make her famous. In Jess's world, Chrysalis is going to do whatever it takes to make sure her production succeeds- no matter who gets hurt (or goes "missing") in the process. Jess now has to not only be a spy, finding out as much info as she can, but she is forced to come face to face with all the people she had trusted her whole life. Her parents, her "best friends", literally every person she has known forever, and who has lied to and deceived her, are now back in her daily life. While I enjoyed Jess dealing with these folks, I had a hard time remembering who some of them were from the first book. Especially because who they really were was obviously not who they'd been pretending to be, so it was often hard to keep everyone straight. But I did like the impact that these people had on Jess. I also wished the ending had been a little more fleshed out, as I felt there were a few threads that could have been tied up better. But overall, it was an exciting conclusion to a really solid and unique duology, one that I would definitely recommend! Bottom Line: Love Jess and her story in every millennium, frankly. You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    THIS IS NOT THE REAL WORLD is exactly the sequel that fans of the first book deserve! Carey is back again giving readers a bird’s eye view into Jess Flynn’s life and taking them on her path to revenge. This book has all of the nostalgia and tension that readers fell in love with in the first book. I loved that this time we already knew the set-up and got to learn more about how Swickley functions. The behind-the-scenes glimpse is what every tv show fan wants and this is exactly what the book gav THIS IS NOT THE REAL WORLD is exactly the sequel that fans of the first book deserve! Carey is back again giving readers a bird’s eye view into Jess Flynn’s life and taking them on her path to revenge. This book has all of the nostalgia and tension that readers fell in love with in the first book. I loved that this time we already knew the set-up and got to learn more about how Swickley functions. The behind-the-scenes glimpse is what every tv show fan wants and this is exactly what the book gave us for Stuck in the 90s. There is a fantastic mix of old and new faces for secondary characters that work to make this story filled with fun and suspicion. The ending was quite satisfying, but also left room for a potential third book. I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed this isn’t the last time I hang with Jess Flynn! A huge thank you to Quirk Books for my gifted copy!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Zeman

    What a GREAT continuation of an already amazing story. Just when Jess thinks she’s escaped the world of LLP and left the fake 90s behind, she’s pulled back in. To save herself, to save the boy she loves and to uncover the truth behind the Chrysalis & the money making machinations of LLP. Once back in, she doesn’t know who to trust. She has Sara and Charli helping her on the outside, as best as they can. Is Val trustworthy? Amber & Kristen? She and Kipps are on their own, not knowing what will ha What a GREAT continuation of an already amazing story. Just when Jess thinks she’s escaped the world of LLP and left the fake 90s behind, she’s pulled back in. To save herself, to save the boy she loves and to uncover the truth behind the Chrysalis & the money making machinations of LLP. Once back in, she doesn’t know who to trust. She has Sara and Charli helping her on the outside, as best as they can. Is Val trustworthy? Amber & Kristen? She and Kipps are on their own, not knowing what will happen. Of COURSE, there’s a cliffhanger, leaving a few major loose ends. Cannot wait until NEXT year to see what happens. This is a must for YA mystery/suspense lovers. Thank you NetGalley for the ARC.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    First sentence: The gondola glided between buildings, and that same song filtered in right as we slipped under the third arched bridge. First impressions: I fell hard for the premise of the first book, This is Not the Jess Show. That first book did not disappoint. I thought it was a fabulous premise-driven YA novel that was just fun. I was so excited to see the sequel is being published this May. I would love for it to be just as great as the first book. Premise/plot: Jess Flynn has escaped the li First sentence: The gondola glided between buildings, and that same song filtered in right as we slipped under the third arched bridge. First impressions: I fell hard for the premise of the first book, This is Not the Jess Show. That first book did not disappoint. I thought it was a fabulous premise-driven YA novel that was just fun. I was so excited to see the sequel is being published this May. I would love for it to be just as great as the first book. Premise/plot: Jess Flynn has escaped the lie. But life is far from ideal in the real world especially when your boyfriend, Kipps, is still seventeen and under contract with Like-Life Productions. The two along with some friends (who helped them in the previous book) are hiding out...but the fact that they haven't been caught yet...perhaps leads to some mistakes in judgment. After a very special celebration--the worst happens (relatively speaking). Will Jess sacrifice her own freedom in the real world to return to the lie she escaped? Will she return to her 90's obsessed television show? My thoughts: I enjoyed this one. Did I enjoy it as much as book one? Probably not. Not that I didn't enjoy it at all. But it's hard for a premise-driven book to still carry that some momentum with a second book. I still cared about the characters, still had questions about the world--on and off of the set. This one had some twists and turns, but obviously not as many as the first book. Definitely recommend for those that enjoyed the first book.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Katie | niftyreads

    I’m not going to apologize for being obsessed with Anna Carey’s writing and reading her books back to back on the same day. I was truly captivated with THIS IS NOT THE REAL WORLD, the sequel to THIS IS NOT THE JESS SHOW, and I couldn’t put them down. I know it’s a good book when they can distract me on a high pain day, yet I can fall into a story entirely. 👀 <- I already stated this was me during the first book, but let’s be boring and use this again because I feel if I didn’t have to blink, bre I’m not going to apologize for being obsessed with Anna Carey’s writing and reading her books back to back on the same day. I was truly captivated with THIS IS NOT THE REAL WORLD, the sequel to THIS IS NOT THE JESS SHOW, and I couldn’t put them down. I know it’s a good book when they can distract me on a high pain day, yet I can fall into a story entirely. 👀 <- I already stated this was me during the first book, but let’s be boring and use this again because I feel if I didn’t have to blink, breathe, eat, or use the bathroom, I don’t think I could have read this book faster. I NEEDED to know the next part of Jess (and Kipps) story. And Carey did not let me down. This book was just as thrilling and unexpected as the first. Surprisingly, it still had creepy The Truman Show/the whole world is watching you vibes, and I didn’t expect that. I loved that it kept me guessing, and I never was right. 😅 I liked how it addressed the idea of what friendship is and what is right and wrong. It makes you think. The series, as a whole, makes you think about social media consumption. It would be an exciting series to buddy read or with your book club. You definitely have to read the first one before this one, but I recommend these books. I mean, I read them in a day; that should tell you something, right? Thanks Quirk Books for the gifted book! • Content Warnings: kidnapping, emotional abuse, gaslighting, car accident

  16. 5 out of 5

    Giulia Colma

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! Tw: child abuse, emotional abuse, car crash, kidnapping I was SO excited to receive this book early because I absolutely loved This Is Not The Jess Show and of course I went back and reread it before diving into this one because I didn't wanna miss a single detail! This book is so fascinating because it's dystophic, but it's a dystopia that could actually happen, with today's culture and the need to always be online and know what I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! Tw: child abuse, emotional abuse, car crash, kidnapping I was SO excited to receive this book early because I absolutely loved This Is Not The Jess Show and of course I went back and reread it before diving into this one because I didn't wanna miss a single detail! This book is so fascinating because it's dystophic, but it's a dystopia that could actually happen, with today's culture and the need to always be online and know what everyone's doing 24/7 According to how the book ended, I think we might get a third book and I wouldn't be opposed to that, because I need to be sure that my characters get the happy ending they deserve and I'm not ready yet to say goodbye to them! Anna Carey's writing is marvelous, the pages really flew by and every character was well-rounded and I really felt like I was in the story. I'm definitely looking forward to reading more from her! I highly recommend this to any Black Mirrors fans or anyone looking for a fast-paced novel about the horrors of technology, reality shows and social media. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me to read an early copy.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Asher Stewart

    I received an e-arc of this book via netgalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. This was an amazing sequel. In the first book, we don't get much information on the side characters (ie. Chrysalis, Kipps, Amber, etc.), so it was nice getting to see them more in this book. I did struggle just a tiny bit with keeping track of all the characters, but they all felt developed and weren't there just for the sake of being there. The plot was a lot faster than the first one, and at some times felt ov I received an e-arc of this book via netgalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. This was an amazing sequel. In the first book, we don't get much information on the side characters (ie. Chrysalis, Kipps, Amber, etc.), so it was nice getting to see them more in this book. I did struggle just a tiny bit with keeping track of all the characters, but they all felt developed and weren't there just for the sake of being there. The plot was a lot faster than the first one, and at some times felt overwhelming. It was one event right after another. It definitely felt very thriller-esque, which I enjoyed. Overall I loved this book, and would 100% recommend this series. ---------------------------------------------------------- When you get an arc to the sequel of one of your favourite books ever!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Abby Manzi

    Thank you Goodreads for the free ARC copy of this book. I didn't realize until I finished this book and flipped it over that is was a sequel. I really liked it just the same, didn't feel lost over the storyline at all. I loved The Truman Show movie and this book felt like a set in the future, what happens after Truman escapes version of that. I got about halfway and finished it in one sitting. Thank you Goodreads for the free ARC copy of this book. I didn't realize until I finished this book and flipped it over that is was a sequel. I really liked it just the same, didn't feel lost over the storyline at all. I loved The Truman Show movie and this book felt like a set in the future, what happens after Truman escapes version of that. I got about halfway and finished it in one sitting.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kristi Housman Confessions of a YA Reader

    RTC closer to release date. Thank you to the publisher for my review copy.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Shareca

    This Is Not The Jess Show ★★★★ 05/25 This Is Not The Real World ★★★★ Anna Carey After reading Anna Carey's previous novel, This Is Not The Jess Show, I eagerly anticipated her sequel, This Is Not The Real World. 😭 In the first book, I was drawn to the retro Truman Show, Black Mirror, and My So-Called Life concept. The plot of ‘Jess Show’ takes place in the 1990s and develops an engaging character named Jess Flynn. Even with the strange relationship between Jess and the world she knows, the prose by C This Is Not The Jess Show ★★★★ 05/25 This Is Not The Real World ★★★★ Anna Carey After reading Anna Carey's previous novel, This Is Not The Jess Show, I eagerly anticipated her sequel, This Is Not The Real World. 😭 In the first book, I was drawn to the retro Truman Show, Black Mirror, and My So-Called Life concept. The plot of ‘Jess Show’ takes place in the 1990s and develops an engaging character named Jess Flynn. Even with the strange relationship between Jess and the world she knows, the prose by Carey is beautifully descriptive when describing Jess' internal feelings about the newness of her realizations. ✨ In the same way that Jess notices the weirdness around her, so do you. It becomes a game to determine what exactly is going on — it made for an enjoyable reading experience. 🌤 Each time Jess experiences a new bit of truth, we feel for her and feel empathy as she tries to understand this weird situation. ✨(Finding out the truth about this story is a large part of the enjoyment of it as well as the reason it kept me turning the pages, so there will be no spoilers, as I hope you will read the book. 🙏🏾)✨ Jess' narrative continues straight from the final pages of the previous novel: “The Jess Show” may no longer exist, but her life is no less dramatic as a result. Although we thought Jess would have some respite, 'Stuck in the 90's' remains her greatest challenge. Even though I enjoyed reading these two together as a binge, some parts of the first were addressed here pleasantly. There is also an enjoyable development of the larger questions surrounding Jess's journey into her Truman Show world, the story behind how she was brought into Stuck in the 90's, and the romance. Following the first novel, this was an exciting sequel, I enjoyed the characters, plot, and the possibility of a third book. The quality of Carey's writing continues to be outstanding throughout. As a character, Jess is superbly crafted and is a delight to root for. 🔪🥰😍

  21. 4 out of 5

    Caitie

    90s nostalgia meets a tv show/production team that’s basically a cult, let’s uncover the truth. That’s what Jess Flynn is faced with when she finds out that her life is actually a tv show called ”Stuck in the 90s.” Her whole life is basically fake and she wants to learn to live in the real world as best she can. But that’s not as easy as it sounds because the production company seems to be everywhere and fans want Jess back. It’s a creepy look at how feeling watched is nothing new and how your l 90s nostalgia meets a tv show/production team that’s basically a cult, let’s uncover the truth. That’s what Jess Flynn is faced with when she finds out that her life is actually a tv show called ”Stuck in the 90s.” Her whole life is basically fake and she wants to learn to live in the real world as best she can. But that’s not as easy as it sounds because the production company seems to be everywhere and fans want Jess back. It’s a creepy look at how feeling watched is nothing new and how your life can feel the Truman Show. I think this is an interesting look at how your teenage years are awful and how it can feel like your whole is under the control of other people (in this case literally). I like Jess as a character because she was understandably upset with how her life has turned out, she feels betrayed. I liked reading the 90s nostalgia stuff—I was born in the 90s—including other shows and even soda like crystal Pepsi.

  22. 5 out of 5

    chiara

    thank you netgalley and publisher for the arc in exchange for an honest review. loved the romance!! also really liked the main character and the plot was unlike anything i’ve ever read. the ending was intenseeeeee. i quite enjoyed this book!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Becca

    Loved loved loved loved the sequel. This book had me on the edge of my seat and was filled with so many unexpected plot twists that I could not wait to read more. Hoping that there will be a third book *fingers crossed 🤞🏻* as there is a lot of unanswered questions and I would love to see Jess and Kipps back together and happy. Loved seeing their relationship grow in this book and can’t wait to read more in the last book (I heard a rumor this is a trilogy, so hoping that is true and there is anot Loved loved loved loved the sequel. This book had me on the edge of my seat and was filled with so many unexpected plot twists that I could not wait to read more. Hoping that there will be a third book *fingers crossed 🤞🏻* as there is a lot of unanswered questions and I would love to see Jess and Kipps back together and happy. Loved seeing their relationship grow in this book and can’t wait to read more in the last book (I heard a rumor this is a trilogy, so hoping that is true and there is another book)

  24. 5 out of 5

    Teri

    The first book in this duology came with a twist that left me gaping in disbelief, and I couldn’t wait to see what happened in this sequel. In the last book, Jess and Kipps narrowly escaped the show and then went into hiding with friends. This story begins several months later. Jess is eighteen-years-old, but Kipps is only seventeen, so when he’s traced down by Like-Life Productions and forced to fulfill the remainder of his contract, both characters find themselves in situations beyond their con The first book in this duology came with a twist that left me gaping in disbelief, and I couldn’t wait to see what happened in this sequel. In the last book, Jess and Kipps narrowly escaped the show and then went into hiding with friends. This story begins several months later. Jess is eighteen-years-old, but Kipps is only seventeen, so when he’s traced down by Like-Life Productions and forced to fulfill the remainder of his contract, both characters find themselves in situations beyond their control. To be with Kipps and find a way to expose the truth, Jess also returns to the show. This sequel gives more insight to many of the supporting characters who play bigger roles this time, especially Chrysalis, the “villain”. Where the first book revealed plenty of secrets and had a momentum that made it difficult to put down, this one has a different feel. The big question is now who Jess and Kipps can trust, and who’s in line waiting to betray them. Still, it has a few surprises, more dastardly deeds come to light, and the power of social media (a positive aspect) is incorporated into the story line. At barely three hundred pages, this is a quick read that takes only a few hours. The story doesn’t really end on a cliffhanger, but I’m unsure if another book is in the works. If this is the end, it’s been an engaging, quirky series packed with surprises that I enjoyed. It was fun to relive some 90s nostalgia. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Krissy (books_and_biceps9155)

    Thank you to @quirkbooks for my advance copy! I LOVED This Is Not the Jess Show! I read it in one sitting because it was just so great and I adored all the 90’s vibes. This Is Not the Real World is its sequel and we are back with all of the 90’s nostalgia as well as the follow up to all of our favorite characters. Since this is a sequel, I am going to keep things short. I don’t want to ruin it and give any spoilers away. Sequels always make me nervous because you never know right? It can ruin th Thank you to @quirkbooks for my advance copy! I LOVED This Is Not the Jess Show! I read it in one sitting because it was just so great and I adored all the 90’s vibes. This Is Not the Real World is its sequel and we are back with all of the 90’s nostalgia as well as the follow up to all of our favorite characters. Since this is a sequel, I am going to keep things short. I don’t want to ruin it and give any spoilers away. Sequels always make me nervous because you never know right? It can ruin the original. Just know that the fabulous world building continues, there is more information into the background of all the characters and “the where they are now” so you get a nice rounded out version of the fallout from book one. Jess is just as wonderful and I really felt that her character grew and matured. What she endured in book one was just so sad/horrific that I was happy to see her learn to become an adult despite all of it. It was nice that there was some added spice to the story as well. Kip and Jess’ relationship is so sweet. The villains were back in full force too.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Thank you NetGalley and Quirk Books for an eARC of this book! This story is a sequel. And although the premise was interesting, I felt the execution was not quite there for me. The story is about a girl that is living on a reality TV how and she doesn't know it! The first book centers mainly on her life and as she slowly discovers life is not what she thought. This book is about how Jess (the MC) tries to move forward with her life with the knowledge that nothing is as she once thought. And afte Thank you NetGalley and Quirk Books for an eARC of this book! This story is a sequel. And although the premise was interesting, I felt the execution was not quite there for me. The story is about a girl that is living on a reality TV how and she doesn't know it! The first book centers mainly on her life and as she slowly discovers life is not what she thought. This book is about how Jess (the MC) tries to move forward with her life with the knowledge that nothing is as she once thought. And after the work she put in to escape in book one, she returns back to set in this novel to enact revenge. I found this book very similar to the first novel. The characters were a bit predictable as was the plot. There was a little divergence from the first book other than location and her awareness. It was not as twisty as I was hoping for. I did like how there were realistic type elements to how things may run on a reality show and the not willing to stop attitude of a production company. Overall I was disappointed by this book. I think I just wanted Jess to evolve more maybe? I just felt like there was not enough depth to the story and the characters. This was a fast read for me and I could see how a younger audience might enjoy it.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kody

    3.5/5. Wasn't as much fun as the original and I was hoping to see a little more worldbuilding. I feel like this could have gone so much farther and darker and by the end I was simply left with the question: was this sequel necessary? The whole take-down-evil-corporation storyline could have been so much bigger and the stakes didn't feel as necessarily high as the first one. 3.5/5. Wasn't as much fun as the original and I was hoping to see a little more worldbuilding. I feel like this could have gone so much farther and darker and by the end I was simply left with the question: was this sequel necessary? The whole take-down-evil-corporation storyline could have been so much bigger and the stakes didn't feel as necessarily high as the first one.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Abigail Singrey

    In the sequel to This is Not the Jess Show, Jess has escaped the reality show that kept her unknowingly trapped on a 1990's era set her entire childhood. She and her boyfriend, Kipps, are living with her fake sister Sara (who fake-died of cancer on the show) and working to expose the evils of the show. But the show isn't ready to let either of them go. When the show tracks them down, they capture Kipps, who isn't eighteen yet. His parents are willing to send him back for a paycheck, and Jess is In the sequel to This is Not the Jess Show, Jess has escaped the reality show that kept her unknowingly trapped on a 1990's era set her entire childhood. She and her boyfriend, Kipps, are living with her fake sister Sara (who fake-died of cancer on the show) and working to expose the evils of the show. But the show isn't ready to let either of them go. When the show tracks them down, they capture Kipps, who isn't eighteen yet. His parents are willing to send him back for a paycheck, and Jess is told that her only way to see them is to rejoin the show. After the secret group trying to expose the show tells Jess they need an agent on the inside, Jess agrees to go back. She wants to spend time with her boyfriend, steal evidence and take down the show. But the producers aren't going to let their best show go without a fight, and Jess and Kipps are in more danger than they know. This book was interesting because Jess is in on the concept now. She can go to employee break runs, recognize who's a series regular and a guest star, and finds out about the hidden nooks and crannies that hid cameras and future era tech. Jess struggles to come to terms with her parents and their decisions, as well as knowing who else on set she can trust. Her relationship with Kipps is the only bright spot in her life. He balances her out and keeps her sane, while his love of his family is admirable. As life within the set gets worse and worse, Jess must decide what she's willing to sacrifice to stay. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the advance review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Courtney (pawsitivelybookish)

    Okay this book was wild and I was so anxious the whole time. While I really enjoyed the first book, I definitely could tell what was coming since it was so similar to The Truman Show. But this one?! Omg. I just didn’t really expect anything that happened to actually happen. It was hard to tell who to trust and what might come of the whole story. Very curious if there will be a third!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Poppy

    The world building in 'This is not the Jess show', a young adult, reality TV spin on The Truman Show, was a brilliant introduction to the world of Jess Flynn. She has grown up the star of 'Stuck in the 90s', ignorant of the fact she is known to millions of people around the world. After finally seeming to find safety at the beginning of the first novel, I was desperate to see where Jess' story went in the conclusion of the duology in 'This is Not the Real World'. Her and Kipps are languishing in The world building in 'This is not the Jess show', a young adult, reality TV spin on The Truman Show, was a brilliant introduction to the world of Jess Flynn. She has grown up the star of 'Stuck in the 90s', ignorant of the fact she is known to millions of people around the world. After finally seeming to find safety at the beginning of the first novel, I was desperate to see where Jess' story went in the conclusion of the duology in 'This is Not the Real World'. Her and Kipps are languishing in a secret hideaway, but cannot escape the manipulation and pull of the show's producers for long... Once again, this novel moves at a break-neck pace as we are gradually exposed to the real evil of the show's producers (I mean, you would think allowing a small child to be raised in the public eye on a reality show would be as low as they can go, but apparently not!) and the underground organisation hellbent on taking them down. It is only about 300 pages long but I feel that extending it by a couple of hundred pages would allow events to be portrayed in more detail and would still maintain my interest! The ending did not go to where I thought at all but it was a wild ride. (SORT OF SPOILER - I definitely thought Kipps was a tool of the producers. When Chrysalis said 'he sounds perfect for you', I immediately thought he was a construct of the the show's writers and Jess was being further manipulated... Apparently not!! END OF SORT OF SPOILER). Overall, the duology is a fun rollercoaster - a quick read which is certainly worth it. 4 stars. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher who provided an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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