It took me forever to get around to reading this book, based in large part on the fact that I'd read it as a novella a while back and I didn't expect much difference between the two, except maybe more padding. I'm super-glad to say that I am a shallow person. This is a great expansion on the novella, not only adding a lot, but taking it in a whole new direction.
The idea of spinning the growth of reality TV into some kind of dystopian nightmare scenario is an old one, so it's to Nicole Grotepas's credit that she doesn't give us a world that feels like the thesis statement of an essay called, "In My Day, We All Talked to Each Other and Read Books." The world she builds feels more authentic, lived-in, and real, and the result is a far more satisfying story than you'd get from a lot of writers who mine this particular territory. Her world is no digital apocalypse, but a strip mall arena full of consumers, editors, video workers, and reality stars that feels one half-step ahead of where we are now. It's slick, hyper-real, and very reminiscent of Bruce Wagner's "Wild Palms" (the comic, not the TV series), giving us a digital future in which the entire world feels like one endless sprawling suburb of LA.
The novella felt like a high-tech, sci-fi romance, and there's still an undeniable erotic charge to all these scenes of people voyeuristically watching each other in their most private moments. But the novel version (the one on sale here) morphs into a thriller, and a pretty good one at that. It's still got a romantic heart, and there's a lot of emotional interplay going on, but it's in the service of a bigger story.
(Note: I think it's important with self-published work to mention when an author really goes the extra mile and keeps their text free of typos, grammar, and spelling mistakes. "Feed" doesn't have them, or if it did I didn't notice.)