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One to Watch by Kate Stayman-London
Romance

One to Watch

Debut

We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Kate Stayman-London, on your first book!

Early Release

This is an early release that's only available to our members—the rest of the world has to wait to read it.

by Kate Stayman-London

Excellent choice

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Quick take

Take the best parts of The Bachelorette, mix them with your favorite rom-com, add a dash of sweet wisdom, and stir.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_400

    400+ pages

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Feminist

    Feminist

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_SalaciousPeach

    Salacious

  • Illustrated icon, Icons_Underdog

    Underdog

Synopsis

Bea Schumacher is a devastatingly stylish plus-size fashion blogger who has amazing friends, a devoted family, legions of Insta followers—and a massively broken heart. Like the rest of America, Bea indulges in her weekly obsession: the hit reality show Main Squeeze. The fantasy dates! The kiss-off rejections! The surprising amount of guys named Chad! But Bea is sick and tired of the lack of body diversity on the show. Since when is being a size zero a prerequisite for getting engaged on television?

Just when Bea has sworn off dating altogether, she gets an intriguing call: Main Squeeze wants her to be its next star, surrounded by men vying for her affections. Bea agrees, on one condition—under no circumstances will she actually fall in love. She's in this to supercharge her career, subvert harmful anti-fat beauty standards, inspire women across America, and get a free hot air balloon ride. That's it.

But when the cameras start rolling, Bea realizes things are more complicated than she anticipated. She's in a whirlwind of sumptuous couture, Internet culture wars, sexy suitors, and an opportunity (or two, or five) to find messy, real-life love in the midst of a made-for-TV fairy tale. In this joyful, razor-sharp debut, Bea has to decide whether it might just be worth trusting these men—and herself—for a chance to live happily ever after.

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Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of One to Watch.
One to Watch

Prologue

Paris, France

Ten years ago

The flea market at Clignancourt was at the far northern edge of the city, a few blocks past the final stop on the number 4 Métro, where the Parisian architecture grew more simple, more mundane—a reminder that not all of the city was steeped in centuries of history and romance. Some of it was just where people went to work and took their kids to school and bought their bread in plain old supermarkets instead of quaint boulangeries.

Bea had come to the flea market in search of gifts for her family—maybe some lace for her mother or vintage records for her brother Duncan—but she also hoped she might find some etchings for herself, or, even better, some children’s books with hand-tipped illustrations to read with her stepfather to her new baby nephew. Her friends in her study-abroad program had raved about their flea-market finds, so Bea thought it was worth a trip, even if there was no chance of buying chic vintage clothes like the ones they had modeled for her. It was hard enough for Bea to shop in America, let alone here in Paris, where it was almost unthinkable to see a woman on the street who couldn’t be described as “bird-boned.”

After years of practice, Bea thought she’d mastered the art of being large and invisible at the same time—the dark, baggy clothes, the quiet manner, the downward gaze. When she arrived as a freshman at UCLA and found herself surrounded by lithe, toned Californians, she was afraid she’d stand out like a bulbous blemish on a glassy complexion, but the L.A. culture of self-obsession made it easier than she expected to slip by unseen.

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Why I love it

I have a confession—before I started @spiveysbookclub, I went on The Bachelor to find love. It was almost 10 years ago and I am now a vocal critic of the show, but you can imagine my trepidation when I was approached to review One to Watch. After reading this book, however, I can confidently say that the author has provided a compelling, realistic, and funny story about reality TV that is poised to be one of the breakout rom-coms of the summer.

Bea Schumacher is a popular and stylish plus-sized fashion blogger who has given up on dating. After a night of live-tweeting and drinking (which I can confirm is usually a bad idea), Bea pens an epic takedown of Main Squeeze—a reality dating show that resembles The Bachelor—criticizing them for their lack of size-inclusion and diversity. When the blog post goes viral, Bea is asked to be the next star of the show. She decides to use the opportunity to jump start her career, without falling in love. Unfortunately, she is not prepared for manipulative producers, fairy-tale date scenarios, or the charms of sexy suitors!

This book is way juicier than any written by former Bachelor contestants. Fans of reality dating shows will squeal with glee at the familiar characters we all love to hate, while critics will appreciate the smart commentary from a relatable feminist heroine about the unrealistic beauty standards popularized by these shows. Who needs Bachelor In Paradise when you can just read One to Watch and imagine the progressive show that we all deserve?

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Member ratings (25,350)

  • Cameron J.

    Hueytown, AL

    This book was everything. All of the emotions I swear !! I related to this book in so many ways. If you haven’t picked this awesome book you’re definitely missing out. Bea is a role model ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Rachel B.

    Brooklyn, NY

    As a Bachelor superfan, this was such a guilty pleasure. As a plus-size woman, this was phenomenal and spoke to every thought I have ever had about feeling unwanted, unlovable, and alone. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Ariel A.

    San Antonio, TX

    Maybe ‘cause I’m plus size… but I so LOVED this book! I was expecting it to be like Jennifer Weiner’s “Good in Bed” but I was WAY off. It was more tender, more vulnerable. I couldn’t tear myself away!

  • Marylou T.

    Staten Island, NY

    Thoroughly enjoyed this book! It ended like I hoped it would♥️ I always enjoy “happily ever after” & this one did not disappoint????. So far I have enjoyed every book I’ve obtained from Book of Month.

  • Kristen W.

    Wentzville, MO

    Maybe it’s because I’m a huge fan of Bachelor Nation and love the idea of body positivity, but I was SO INVESTED in this book! It’s everything I wanted and more to read before Valentines Day weekend❤️

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