2018 Book #20 – Bachelor Nation by Amy Kaufman

41-vpUXp6sLTitle: Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure
Author: Amy Kaufman
Date finished: 3/9/18
Genre: Non-fiction, popular culture
Publisher: Dutton
Publication Date: March 6, 2018
Pages in book: 320
Stand alone or series: Stand alone
Where I got the book from: NetGalley
NOTE: I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

Blurb from the cover:

The first definitive, unauthorized, behind-the-scenes cultural history of the Bachelor franchise, America’s favorite guilty pleasure.

For fifteen years and thirty-five seasons, the Bachelor franchise has been a mainstay in American TV viewers’ lives. Since it premiered in 2002, the show’s popularity and relevance has only grown–more than eight million viewers tuned in to see the conclusion of the most recent season of The Bachelor.

The iconic reality television show’s reach and influence into the cultural zeitgeist is undeniable. Bestselling writers and famous actors live tweet about it. Die-hard fans–dubbed “Bachelor Nation”–come together every week during each season to participate in fantasy leagues and viewing parties.

Bachelor Nation is the first behind-the-scenes, unauthorized look into the reality television phenomenon. Los Angeles Times journalist Amy Kaufman is a proud member of Bachelor Nation and has a long history with the franchise–ABC even banned her from attending show events after her coverage of the program got a little too real for its liking. She has interviewed dozens of producers, contestants, and celebrity fans to give readers never-before-told details of the show’s inner workings: what it’s like to be trapped in the mansion “bubble”; dark, juicy tales of producer manipulation; and revelations about the alcohol-fueled debauchery that occurs long before the fantasy suite.

Kaufman also explores what our fascination means, culturally: what the show says about the way we view so-called ideal suitors, our subconscious yearning for fairy-tale romance, and how this enduring television show has shaped society’s feelings about love, marriage, and feminism by appealing to a marriage plot that’s as old as Jane Austen.

My rating:  3.25 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review.

So I ended up requesting this book because of the subject matter. I’ve honestly never watched the Bachelor show or any of the other shows in the franchise but I’ve always kind of had an interest in the show. I recently watched a show on Facebook, RelationShipped, that is a similar premise to The Bachelor shows and I loved the RelationShipped show, so when I saw this book available I figured, what the heck I’ll give it a try. I was impressed by the amount of work and research that went into this book, it was a behind the scenes look into how the Bachelor works and gets produced but it also looks at the show from a psychological aspect. This book really sparked an interest for me and made me want to start watching the show (I bought and am watching Season 13 now). Hearing about how fake everything was actually made me want to see the show more, because while the people and their feelings are very real, what the audience is seeing isn’t always exactly what happened and that makes it feel more fictional to me.

I liked this book a lot, the only reason it didn’t get a higher score for me was just because I really prefer fiction (personally). The book overall was really interesting and fairly well paced, but the lack of a “plot” always leaves me feeling a little disappointed. Overall though this was a good book and was super informative, I would definitely recommend it, especially if you like The Bachelor TV series.

Link to author website

Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

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