I am absolutely thrilled to be today’s stop on the SOMETHING REAL Blog Tour. This was such an amazing book and I can’t wait for everyone to read it and fall in love with it as I have.
If you haven’t had a chance to do more than take a peek at the book’s description – or if you have but still can’t get enough – I am delighted to be able to give you just a bit more insight into this story through not one, but three, interviews with SOMETHING REAL’s Bonnie™ Baker, Benton™ Baker and Patrick Sheldon.
As you’ll soon learn, if you don’t already know, Bonnie™ Baker prefers to be called Chloe. And I don’t blame her. I couldn’t imagine going through life as a trademark. But whether she’ll always be Bonnie™ to you or you’re happy to call her Chloe, she’s pretty awesome for someone who spent most of their entire life in the spotlight.
Of course, Benny and Patrick are equally as awesome. If you haven’t met them before, check out what they had to say in response to the umpteen questions I asked. And if you don’t think they’re both absolutely adorable, then… I don’t know, I just don’t know.
As I did have quite a few questions for each of my guests, I thought it best that I not include my responses to their answers. But, awww Chloe, I love what what you said about Benny. And LOL Benny, so nice of you to tease Matt for wanting to look good for you.
And Patrick, the answer to your question is “NO.” No it’s not too simple an answer, it’s the perfect answer.
If you’d like to get to know Chloe, Benny and Patrick, keep on reading to check out my interviews with each of them. If you’d like to know more about SOMETHING REAL and its author, Heather Demetrios, those details follow below that.
And if you’d like to enter for a chance to win a copy of this completely captivating and very amazing book, scroll down to the Rafflecopter toward the end of this post.
I’ve also included the tour schedule with direct links to all the stops in case you’d like to check out a few other awesome posts, or get a few more chances to win a copy of the book. Of course my post just happens to be my favorite. But I may be biased… a little. So I’ll let you be the judge.
Chloe a.k.a. Bonnie™ Baker, Benton™ Baker & Patrick Sheldon
Hi Chloe – I hope it’s alright if I call you Chloe – thank you so much for stopping by the blog to answer a few interview questions with your brother Benton™ Baker and your… friend… Patrick Sheldon.
I know that interviews aren’t your thing so I’ll try to make this as painless as possible, but in order for my blog’s readers to get to know the real story, your real story, I just have to ask a few.
Q. Growing up on television, having your whole life on display for the world to see and judge, could not have been easy. What advice would you give to anyone who is considering becoming a reality TV star?
A. Don’t do it! The producers are going to show you as they want you to look, not as you really are. You have no control over how “scenes” from your life are edited. And there’s nothing worse than seeing lies about yourself in magazines and online. Nothing.
Q. If you had to try and sum up Baker’s Dozen in twenty words or less, for those who may not have seen the show, what would you say?
A. It’s a show about my family, about what it’s like to live in a house with fifteen people. The cameras pretty much look for drama.
Q. Your brother Benton™, Benny, has been the person who has always been there for you, even when your Mom and Dad weren’t. What has having him in your corner meant to you?
A. It’s meant everything. He has literally kept me alive. The thing about our situation is that nobody has our back. Obviously my parents don’t, or they wouldn’t have put us on the show in the first place. Shit. I don’t know if I’m allowed to say that. My lawyer told me to be careful…whatever, it’s the truth. My sister, Lex, and I have a…complicated relationship. Benny’s the only person in my family who gets me. He’s my true north.
Q. In order to try and achieve some semblance of normalcy in a life that was spent mostly on television and in a house with twelve other siblings, you decided to change your name to Chloe. What made you choose Chloe rather than going by your middle name, Elizabeth? Is it because it is your mom’s name?
A. I just wanted something that was mine, you know? I love my mom—even if the cameras make it look like I don’t, I honestly do. And changing my name—and choosing the name Chloe—didn’t have anything to do with her, good or bad. If I’d chosen Elizabeth, then the name wouldn’t have belonged only to me. I’m the only Chloe Baker in the world—well, at least I think so. And the best part is that it isn’t trademarked.
Q. I know talking about Patrick isn’t your favorite thing to do, but I just have to ask one question, as I’m sure my readers would not be happy if I didn’t ask at least one. Of all the boys at Taft, Patrick is the one boy you were drawn to. What is it about him that made you crush on him and when was the moment you knew you were crushing?
A. Well, I feel like my memoir, SOMETHING REAL, goes into this a lot. Obviously Patrick gave me permission to write that stuff and the only reason we decided to have our story out there is because we don’t want to let the tabloids be the ones who define our relationship. I needed a whole book to answer this question, so it’s really hard to put Patrick into a few words. He doesn’t fit into neat little boxes, you know? I think that’s probably what made me fall for him. He’s unlike anyone I’ve ever known. He doesn’t care what people think of him (well, except me, I guess) and he’s wickedly smart. I noticed him right away because he’s cute, obviously. We had English together my junior year. I think it was a gradual thing over the course of that first week or two of school. The stuff he said in class, the way we’d catch each other’s eyes…I don’t know.
One of my friends, Arden Rogow-Bales, wrote a hilarious song about him for the SOMETHING REAL book launch. Patrick and I were dying. It’s called wantwantwant (Patrick Sheldon). There’s even a Book Boyfriends Facebook page dedicated to him and Benny. Craziness! I hope I don’t have to throw down for my own boyfriend, but I will.
Hi Benny, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy life to talk to me today. I’m sorry Matt was unable to join you, but maybe next time… I have a few questions that I would love to ask him.
Q. While you’re not the biggest fan of Baker’s Dozen or MetaReel, you seem to have had a better handle on things than Chloe. You both grew up in front of the cameras, and are practically the same age, but what were you able to do to make it less stressful? How were you able to cope? Was it because you weren’t in the spotlight in the same way she was?
A. Growing up, Chloe was always the one in the spotlight. First it was because she loved the camera and was a total ham. But as she got older, she started to hate it and, well, you know what happened…I guess not getting the kind of attention she had was what helped me to be more relaxed about the whole thing. The cameras weren’t in my face as much until the show started up again. Honestly, if it weren’t for Matt in those last few weeks, I don’t know how I would have dealt. I mean, I knew what Chlo was going through, but when it happened to me, and affected the guy I love—I just wanted to go out and punch a lot of people, you know?
Q. For the longest time it seemed that you were the only one there for Chloe. What has it been like having to be her brother, best friend and sometimes a stand-in for a parent?
A. It’s not “like” anything. I’d do anything for my sister and she’d do anything for me. That’s just the way it is.
Q. If you had one wish that could come true for Chloe, what would it be? And for you?
A. I wish she could have the life she wants – whatever that is. And for me? I wish Matt would hurry his ass up. We have tickets to a Radiohead concert tonight and you know he’s just primping in front of the mirror. Oh, Matt, in case you’re reading this later, I love you, baby.
Q. While you seem closer to Chloe than any of your brothers and sisters, you are, in fact, a twin. It’s typical for twins to share a special bond. Do you have that kind of a bond with Lexie™ or is it only Chloe you’re close with?
A. Lex and I are cool. She just likes to do her own thing, you know? Very independent. Fun twin fact: we’re both ambidextrous.
Q. Without revealing any secrets about what happened during or after, would you have changed what happened on the Kaye Gibbons show? Was the end result worth it?
A. No, I think things played out…the way they probably needed to. But I am gonna sue her ass.
Q. And if you don’t feel like answering that previous question, then perhaps you can answer this one… how did you come up with “cantaloupe”? There are plenty of obscure, not commonly used words you could have chosen, so why a melon?
A. Ha! Matt was eating one at the time and we both loved the randomness of it. For Valentine’s Day, he had the word engraved inside a ring for me. Of course, now we need a new word because it has to be our secret. But we told Chlo she could put it in the memoir, so it’s all good.
Hi Patrick, I hope you’re not upset with me that I asked Chloe to participate in a short interview. I know she doesn’t like the spotlight and you are her biggest protector, but I tried to make it quick and painless. And so I thought the best way to do that would be to take some of the pressure off by asking you a few questions, too.
Q. Most boys would run the other direction when they found out Chloe’s secrets. What made you stay and risk the spotlight, gossip, and paparazzi?
A. Is it too simple to say I love her? Because that’s why.
Q. What was it like wondering whether Chloe felt the same way as you did for all that time? And how long was it exactly that you liked her before actually clueing her into the fact that you did?
A. To answer your first question…it was torture! She was so hot and cold and I had no idea it was because she was trying to hide the fact that she liked me. Argh! We’re idiots. Oh, well, it worked out. As for your second question…I waited way too long. Which is not my style, but for some reason I turned into a gutless weirdo around her. To be more precise, I liked her for an entire year before I finally told her. Like I said, gutless weirdo.
Q. Just how close were you and Benton™? It seems you and he spent much time discussing his sister. What else did you learn from him about Chloe?
A. Ben and I were pretty good friends, but we never really hung out much outside of school. I mean, I’m kind of a loner like that and he was always with Matt, who was always with the football team and that’s not really my scene. We did talk about Chloe a lot—I thought I was being sneaky, but obviously I wasn’t. What I learned from Ben about Chlo is how loyal she is. If she loves you, she will do everything in her power to protect you from the Vultures or anyone else who’s giving you shit.
Q. Chloe tried to keep you separate from her world as much as humanly possible. But you did get to glimpse what life was like for her. What do you think about what she’d been through, is still going through? What do you think about her Mom, Dad and Kirk?
A. I’m actually not allowed to talk about this too much, for legal reasons. But I will say this: everybody deserves the right to a non-fucked up childhood. Everyone.
Q. One last question. If you could change any one thing about your time with Chloe, would you change anything? And why?
A. That’s a tough one. Because so much good came out of the bad, you know? This is what I would change: I wish I could go back in time and tell the Patrick who sat in English class his junior year that he should stop being a gutless weirdo and ask the pretty new girl out. But he got the girl in the end, so I won’t be too hard on him.
Thank you all for joining me here on the blog. You are always welcome back to share any new developments in your lives. I promise to print exactly what you say and not twist your words for the sake of page views.
And if you happen to run into Heather, please thank her for introducing you all to me. It’s been a pleasure getting to know you all.
About Something Real
Winner of the 2012 PEN New England Discovery Award!
There’s nothing real about reality TV.
Seventeen-year-old Bonnie™ Baker has grown up on TV—she and her twelve siblings are the stars of one-time hit reality show Baker’s Dozen. Since the show’s cancellation and the scandal surrounding it, Bonnie™ has tried to live a normal life, under the radar and out of the spotlight. But it’s about to fall apart…because Baker’s Dozen is going back on the air. Bonnie™’s mom and the show’s producers won’t let her quit and soon the life she has so carefully built for herself, with real friends (and maybe even a real boyfriend), is in danger of being destroyed by the show. Bonnie™ needs to do something drastic if her life is ever going to be her own—even if it means being more exposed than ever before.
Publication date: February 4, 2014
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
About Heather Demetrios
Heather Demetrios, originally from Los Angeles, now lives in Brooklyn and various imaginary locales. She is the recipient of a PEN New England Discovery Award for her debut YA novel about reality TV stardom, SOMETHING REAL (Macmillan/Henry Holt), and is the author of the upcoming EXQUISITE CAPTIVE, a smoldering fantasy about jinn in Los Angeles (#1 in the DARK CARAVAN fantasy trilogy from HarperCollins/Balzer+Bray), both out in 2014.
She is currently working on her second novel for Macmillan, a love story about a young combat veteran and a girl trapped in their small town, both struggling to escape the war at home. When she’s not hanging out with her characters, Heather is working on her MFA in writing for children and young adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts.
The publisher, Macmillan, has offered up a copy of SOMETHING REAL to ONE WINNER.
- Giveaway is US only and you must be 13 or older to enter.
- Giveaway ends on March 4th.
- Prize will be sent directly from the publisher.
There are no requirements to like or follow. You just have to leave a comment with your answer to the question. And there are some extra entry opportunities if you follow the author on Twitter, like the author’s Facebook page and add SOMETHING REAL to your Goodreads shelf.
Just enter in the Rafflecopter below…
The Tour Schedule
Jan. 30th – The Book Rat – Guest Post
Jan. 31st – Jenuine Cupcakes – Interview
Feb. 3rd – Hello, Chelly – Review + Interview
Feb. 4th – Forever Young Adult – Interview
Feb. 4th – Best Books Ever – Interview
Feb. 5th – Book Chic Club – Review + Interview
Feb. 6th – Falling for YA – Review
Feb. 7th – Live to Read – Spotlight
Feb. 10th – Book Loving Me – Review + Guest Post
Feb. 11th – YA Book Nerd – Interview
Feb. 12th – Queen Ella Bee Reads – Guest Post
Feb. 13th – Adventures of a Book Junkie – Interview
Feb. 14th – That Artsy Reader Girl – Guest Post
Feb. 17th – Michelle and Leslie’s Book Picks – Character Q&A
Feb. 18th – Fiktshun – Character Interviews
Feb. 19th – Novel Novice – Guest Post
Feb. 20th – Book Haven Extraordinaire – Interview
Feb. 21st – Great Imaginations – Review & Guest Post
Feb. 24th – As Told by Rachel – Interview
Feb. 25th – Alexa Loves Books – Guest Post
Feb. 26th – BookYAReview – Q&A
Feb. 27th – Book Jems – Interview
Mar. 3rd – Reality Lapse
Mar. 4th – Paperback Princess – Review