“Tell me about the male spirit who came forward.”
“Excuse me?”
Sylvie abruptly grabs a marker off the table, scrawls a message on her right arm: You take the red pill.
Unsettled, I say, “I have no idea what—”
She continues to write: You stay in wonderland.
“I suggest you–”
…and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.
Sylvie’s pupils are so enormous, they eclipse the gray of her iris. A shiver springs down my spine. Keeping my voice steady, I say, “ I have no idea what you’re talking about.” 

Some of it Was Real is a fresh, unique, and unputdownable book.

Psychic-medium Sylvie Young starts every show with her origin story, telling the audience how she discovered her abilities. But she leaves out a lot—the plane crash that killed her parents, an estranged adoptive family who tend orchards in rainy Oregon, panic attacks, and the fact that her agent insists she research some clients to ensure success.

After a catastrophic reporting error, Thomas Holmes’s next story at the L.A. Times may be his last, but he’s got a great personal pitch. “Grief vampires” like Sylvie who prey upon the loved ones of the deceased have bankrupted his mother. He’s dead set on using his last-chance article to expose Sylvie as a conniving fraud and resurrect his career.

When Sylvie and Thomas collide, a game of cat and mouse ensues, but the secrets they’re keeping from each other are nothing compared to the mysteries and lies they unearth about Sylvie’s past. Searching for the truth might destroy them both—but it’s the only way to find out what’s real.

Some of it Was Real was one of those books that I wasn’t too sure about. The synopsis is quite different from the usual romance books that I would normally pick. But I am thrilled I took a chance on this book because boy, was it good! This book hooked me right from the first chapter, and I could not put it down (I went to bed at 4:00 am, thank God it was a Friday night). This one of those stories that draws you along and has you trying to guess at the mystery surrounding Sylvie’s past. Nan did a fabulous job creating a unique and different romance mystery novel. The mystery component in this book was masterfully written and had me guessing to the bitter end. If you like a good mystery, you should check out this book. 

For those who are unsure if they like books in the romance genre or don’t enjoy romance books with a lot of that cheese, then this book is perfect for you. The romance-y lovey dovey stuff takes a backseat in this story. The main focus is on Sylvie and whether Thomas can prove that she is a fraud and also trying to solve the mystery around her childhood. There is definitely no love lost between Thomas and Sylvie. For a good part of this book, Thomas does not like Sylvie. His hate for what she does for a living just oozes from the pages. Thomas truly believes Sylvie is a fraud, but you know how that saying goes, “never judge a book by its cover.” As the story progresses, Thomas realizes that there is more to Sylvie than meets the eye, and maybe, just maybe, she is the real deal. Both main characters in this book are well written and fit well together (when they don’t hate each other). I especially loved Sylvie; she is a tough-as-nails, intelligent woman who, at the same time, can be completely unsure of herself and feel a bearable amount of anxiety. I like how Nan had Sylvie trying to cope with these battling emotions and questioning herself and whether her career is as deplorable as Thomas says it is. 

As I had said, romance isn’t a big part of this book. There are a few spicey, tender, heartfelt moments between Thomas and Sylvie, but that’s about it. Even the ending leaves you guessing what will happen between these two. As a couple, I don’t know if they can work. Thomas’ attitude towards Sylvie’s psychic abilities may have changed by the end of the book, but I don’t know if it has changed enough to live in Sylvie’s world.

There are some pretty adorable animals in this book. Moose and Chris almost steal the spotlight in this story at times. But I did want to say that there is a scene in this book that may be a trigger for some. Chris, short for Christopher Robin, is an older cat who ends up being put down in the middle of this story due to her age. I struggled with this part of the book because it’s the moment that I will dread (hopefully many years down the road) with my own cat. So, I really had a hard time reading this bit. 

You will love this book from beginning to end. 

Thank you Berkley Publishing for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.