Skip to main content

Flip Flop: Real Tv, Take Two

Review

Flip Flop: Real Tv, Take Two

>Briana Harris always had prided herself on keeping her private life very...well, private. However, in FLIP FLOP, the second book in Wendy Lawton's Real TV series, a surprise invitation threatens to destroy the secrecy Briana spent her entire life fiercely protecting. Most of Briana's waking hours are spent with best friend Chickie's picture-perfect family. Sleepovers, dinners, family outings --- there isn't a Wells family event that Briana isn't invited to.

But it starts to become clear that something doesn't quite add up. Although Chickie is constantly inviting Briana to spend time with her family, the gesture is never reciprocated. In fact, no one in their small town seems to know anything about the Harris family. With a house enclosed by trees and a father who always seems to be away on business trips, it's not hard for the family to go unnoticed, and Briana certainly intends to keep it that way.

When Chickie decides to put in an application to appear on "Flip Flop," a reality show she and her friend loyally view, Briana is somewhat unnerved. As much as she would love for her cave-like room to be completely redecorated, there's no way that it would be worth having her family exposed on national television. Then the unthinkable happens --- the girls are actually selected to appear on the home decorating show! Not wanting to let her best friend down, Briana agrees to switch rooms for the camera.

As soon as she pledges to appear on "Flip Flop," Briana goes into overdrive planning ways to hide her damaging family secret. With Chickie and a team of designers and cameramen camped out in her bedroom, it can't be long before everything spills out. As Briana begins to examine her complicated life, she finds an unlikely friend on the "Flip Flop" team, one who might just help her to realize that some secrets aren't meant to be kept.

Although the initial premise of FLIP FLOP might seem light, the book is most certainly not, as Wendy Lawton delivers another well-written and powerful addition to the Real TV series. Readers undoubtedly will see that "Flip Flop" is likely a fictionalized version of TLC's "Trading Spaces" (right down to the attractive carpenter), and fans of the show will enjoy the in-depth details of the decorating process. While the long descriptions of the program can be a bit slow for those who don't follow reality TV shows, the quality of the story and writing easily make up for it. Briana's tale is not only heartbreaking, but also portrayed in such an authentic manner that it's impossible for the reader not to become involved.

Lawton once again manages to avoid the cardinal sins of teen fiction, giving readers a wonderfully genuine novel that will leave them anxious for more.

   -

Reviewed by Jennifer Crosby on October 18, 2011

Flip Flop: Real Tv, Take Two
by Wendy Lawton

  • Publication Date: August 1, 2004
  • Genres: Christian, Fiction
  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Moody Publishers
  • ISBN-10: 0802454143
  • ISBN-13: 9780802454140