Saturday, 28 May 2011

Mayne Attraction - In the Spotlight (Book 1) by Ann Mauren

Ellery Mayne is a high school girl who makes a disturbing discovery. After a foiled abduction attempt, she realizes that an entire team of security personnel are secretly shadowing her every move. As she works to make sense of this startling development, she secretly carries out observations of her own, testing the limits of a secret service detail who think they are conducting transparent surveillance on a clueless teenager. 

When the mystery behind the secret security unravels, Ellery is faced with decisions that involve her future and the hopes of two unlikely love interests: a handsome but conflicted security agent who doesn’t realize she knows about him, and her first love—a boy that broke her heart—who has returned to explain his actions and his feelings for her. 

Told from Ellery’s perspective, she puzzles over what could interest not one but two handsome suitors and a whole security force. Suddenly this quiet loner realizes that her life is In the Spotlight and she is the Mayne Attraction.

*Insert embarrassing happy dance here at finally reading a GOOD book*

I loved this book! I started reading it and couldn’t put it down until I had finished – and even then I could have quite happily gone on for another 500 pages (but that didn’t happen…).

Romance, mystery, heartbreak, death, kidnapping attempt, hidden feelings... Greatness!

Ellery was a great character to see the story through. She was so cute with the little things that she did that it made her o much more real to read. She was painted to be so 3D and she stayed that way all through the book which was another joy of this story. She was not thick. She knew what she wanted to do, she knew what the consequences of her actions could be and she didn’t flinch from them. She didn’t paint everyone else as the bad guys if they didn’t understand her reasons or agree with her (having that happen in other YA novel sets my teeth on edge). She had definitely been the most realistic YA heroine I have read this year! The way that she conducted her little tests and experiments to see who was watching added a real fun twist to the story too. 

And finally! NO SEX! Thank goodness. Kodak moment with party poppers and fireworks people! There was kissing and some slight (SLIGHT) innuendo but that was it and I loved it. I spent the book dreading when I would click to the next page and see the infamous words ‘I took his hand and lead him upstairs’ or have the wondering hands scene which would then lead to something else. But there was nothing like that! In fact, everything about this book was lovely. The relationships were geared towards a more serious nature - instead of having just dating things where more serious in that engagements were being spoken about and I personally liked that.

Ellery not allowing herself to be pressurised into doing something she wasn’t comfortable with made me very happy too. She had the kind of personality were she likes to please people but I was glad to see that she could make decisions for herself. (SPOILER) Even with what would seem like a small thing like sharing a tent with a guy. Even though he said he would ‘behave’ himself. She still said no. For some reason this stuck out with me. I suppose that was because if a guy cares for you enough he should respect your decision and if something comes up that makes you the slightest little bit uncomfortable you have the right to make your own decision and put your foot down. I could be reading waaaay to much into that little bit but I really liked it anyway.

The supporting cast are so colourful and as much fun to read about as Ellery is. And having her make friends with a group of Goths was a stroke of genius – in my humble opinion.

Gray and Ash are both lovely in their own ways and I can honestly see why Ellery finds herself stuck between the two of them. I would find it difficult to choose between then too I think. I can’t wait for the next in the series.

A wonderful, fun read.

5 stars!


  1. Of course, I'm slightly biased, but I loved your review of Mayne Attraction: In The Spotlight!

    I'm delighted that you could feel the realism of Ellery's character--that was a huge thrill to hear as it was my utmost concern when writing her character. The other objective was to demonstrate a possible path from being shy and introverted to becoming more comfortable in your own skin, to ultimately feeling like you can face people (and the world) as a person with just as much right and an opinion that matters as well as anybody else's. Another big point I hoped to make was that even though young love is amazingly wonderful, if it's real and lasting you should be able to take care of important commitments in your life (like school or career building opportunities) without fear that those ties will vanish. If they do, was the bond truly so strong?

    Like you, I love Goth characters and hope to give them more attention in future works--possibly a spinoff from Mayne Attraction?

    I can't thank you enough for your enthusiastic comments about my 'Spotlight'! It's a free download on for any who wish to check it out! Cheers!

    Ann Mauren

  2. I hadn't heard of this one but it sounds really cool and interesting!!!

  3. @Alex (A Girl, Books, OtherThings)

    I hadn't heard of it either until I stumbled across it on Amazon. I loved it...actually I think it has quickly became my favourite book of the year so far. I would definitely recommend it (its free on Amazon for kindle right now :))



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