The Real Thing
by: Cassie Mae
Release Date: August 19, 2014
I nudge Eric’s shoulder and hide the book from his view. He laughs and says, “My friends! cried the elephant. Tell me! Do tell! Are you safe? Are you sound? Are you whole? Are you well?”
“You’re insane.” I set the book down, open, between us. “Do you have all Seusses memorized?”
“No,” he says as I close it. “But this one was Tolani’s favorite, so I heard it a lot. It was one of his anchors for his attacks.”
His mouth twitches. “Yeah, sorry. That’s the word me and my brother use for it. Just something to focus on when we start to panic. Helps keep our heads.”
In The Real Thing, one of the characters deals with social anxiety. I think all of us have anxiety to a point, and I have my own personal anchors that help me keep my head when I feel like losing it… and they’ll probably prove that I am a total nerd 😉
I suppose my biggest anchor is laughter. No matter how stressed I am, no matter how panicked I get over the writing aspect of my life, I get laughing and I’m calm. 🙂
In this electrifying novel from Cassie Mae, two close friends surprise themselves by shifting from platonic love to sexual attraction.
Eric Matua has one friend—his best friend and childhood sweetheart, who needs a place to stay for the summer. Mia Johnson has thousands of friends—who live in her computer. Along with her email chats and Facebook notifications, Mia also devours romance novels, spending countless hours with fictional characters, dreaming of her own Romeo to sweep her off her feet. When she starts receiving supersweet messages from a stranger who thinks she’s someone else, Mia begins to believe that real love is possible outside her virtual world.
When the two friends become roommates, Mia finds herself falling harder than she ever thought she could. But Eric keeps his desires locked away, unsure of himself and his ability to give his best friend what she deserves in a boyfriend. As her advances are continually spurned, Mia splits her time between Eric and her computer. But she soon realizes she’s about to lose the only real thing she’s ever had.
Advance praise for The Real Thing
“Cassie Mae is awesome! The perfect balance between laugh-out-loud funny and achingly poignant, The Real Thing is the ultimate escapist read. I didn’t want it to end!”—Lauren Layne, author of Isn’t She Lovely
“Watching two best friends figure out how to fall in love makes The Real Thing a summer read of swoon-worthy perfection.”—Jolene Perry, author of The Summer I Found You
“Cassie Mae’s The Real Thing made me want to close out every social media app and electronic device I have, but I couldn’t manage to stop reading!”—Rebecca Yarros, author of Full Measures
Pre-order your copy on Amazon or Barnes and Noble today!
About the Author
Cassie Mae (who dawns the name Becca Ann on occasion) is the author of a few hundred… okay, maybe not that many… books. Some of which became popular for their quirky titles, characters, and stories. She likes writing about nerds, geeks, the awkward, the fluffy, the short, the shy, the loud, the fun.
Since publishing her bestselling debut, Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend, she has published and sold books to Random House, Swoon Romance, and Spencer Hill Press. She has a favorite of all her book babies, but no, she won’t tell you what it is. (Mainly because it changes depending on the day.)
Along with writing, Cassie likes to binge watch Teen Wolf and The Big Bang Theory. She can quote Harry Potter lines quick as a whip. And she likes kissing her hubby, but only if his facial hair is trimmed. She also likes cheesecake to a very obsessive degree.
You can stalk, talk, or send pictures of Dylan O’Brien to her on her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/cassiemaeauthor
Whitney’s Four Star Review
I adore Cassie Mae and was excited to read an NA book from her as I’ve only ever known her to write YA novels. The Real Thing is a bit of a departure from her other books, not only in the age of the characters (both are 20-21ish) but in the subject matter. Many of Cassie’s previous books have been what I would call romantic comedy and while The Real Thing certainly has elements of silliness and a few LOL moments, this book is much heavier. It is not a difficult read, just a more serious tone.
Mia and Eric have been best friends since high school. Both have always harbored deeper feelings but never acted on them until the summer the book takes place. Eric has spent the last three years out of the country, hiding his true self: the young man who has anxiety attacks, a poor body image and is extremely self conscious from his one (and pretty much only) real friend.
Mia lives her life in a social bubble. And online social bubble. And let me tell ya, the poor girl got on my nerves with her constant FB, twitter, and emailing. She has almost what you’d call a social media addiction. One that gets in the way of her creating real friendships. One that might destroy her chance at something REAL with Eric.
Mia has to learn to engage in the real world and Eric has to learn to trust his best friend with his secrets. Then maybe they can turn their friendship into the REAL THING.
Eric’s character was a breath of fresh air for me. He used to be overweight and has taken years to become healthier and more fit but still suffers from poor self esteem and a crippling anxiety problem. He’s a great guy and not your typical book boyfriend but I loved him. Mia… I loved her for the great person she was but she did get on my nerves occasionally. Luckily, the fact that she really is a good person and madly in love with Eric overrides her other qualities.
I thought the writing was very good, the character development was great. Cassie has given us something ‘different’ with a fresh storyline. This is clean, meaning no sex though there is definitely some tension. Overall, I recommend this book! It was just missing a tiny something that I can’t really explain to keep me from giving it five stars though it was close. Even though this is classified as NA, I think 16 and up is a good age range. And yes, this is a stand alone.
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