Another lovely cover–and a sweet story! 🙂
Under the Spotlight Synopsis:
After an embarrassing stint on a reality-TV music competition years ago, Riley vowed never to sing again. Now she’s behind the scenes, working at the prestigious Sound Sync recording studio, and life is looking up. But then Garrett Jamieson, the oldest brother in the famous Jamieson brothers band, crashes into her world.
Garrett has hit rock bottom, and he is desperate to reinvent himself. After calling in a few favors, he ends up working at Sound Sync to learn the ropes of record producing from the industry’s best. And he can’t believe his luck when he discovers that Riley has been keeping a secret—she is an amazing singer. By producing her album, he’s sure to top the record charts again. But Garrett is forced to use every trick in his arsenal to persuade the sassy girl to record.
Riley refuses to sing—or even entertain the thought of it—and sparks fly as Garrett finally meets his match. But in the heat of the moment, one stolen kiss changes everything. Will Riley be the first person to finally rein Garrett in, or will Garrett succeed in getting Riley back under the spotlight?
Under the Spotlight is a very sweet NA/YA story that’s really a finding-your-path-in-life story for both Riley and Garrett with a light touch of romance added in for flavor. It’s the third book in the series, but other than Garrett spending a good chunk of time grumbling about his brothers’ defection from their group and the brief appearance Peter and Adam make toward the end, they’re not in it much. It really focuses on Garrett and what he’s going to do with his life post-Jamieson brothers band and Riley, so it worked just fine as a standalone.
(Though after finding out that Garrett is essentially a bad guy in the first two books ( Rock and a Hard Place and Snapshot , I’ve added them to my TBR. He definitely had his moments in this one, but he wasn’t exactly an antagonist…I’m intrigued.)
Garret and Riley definitely get off on the wrong foot–he inadvertently steals her chance at a job she’s been dying to do–and soon they’re butting heads about all kinds of issues large and small. Their main source of contention is the fact that Garrett wants to produce Riley’s first album for her and wants to begin on it pronto, but Riley has sworn off singing after her loss on a music reality show five years earlier and refuses. And refuses. And refuses.
But fate conspires against her, and eventually she’s forced to give in. She’ll only give in so far though, and she continues to give Garrett a run for his money, standing up to him like no one else does, especially when he gets a little too heavy-handed with his management of her.
But then he figures out a sure-fire way for getting her to stop talking…
“Is that what’s bothering you?” He leaned close.
“Of course not,” she lied.
“Good.” He pulled her into his arms and kissed her.
Riley couldn’t decide whether to push him away or pull him closer. She’d worried he wouldn’t kiss her again after last night, but he infuriated her too. Still, she couldn’t help losing herself in the touch of his lips and comfort of his arms.
He slowly released her. “Still mad?”
“Maybe.” She dipped her head and blushed, her knees weak, as a thousand butterflies fluttered in her stomach.
He pushed a lock of her hair over her shoulder.
“Why did you kiss me?” she asked.
“It seemed like a good idea.” He gave her a half smile that was knowing, wicked, and not the least bit sweet.
“So whenever you don’t like what I have to say, you’re going to kiss me to make me shut up?” She hoped so, but logic said he was using her.
“I like your thinking.”
“I’m serious. You don’t even like me. You said so yourself.”
“Well, you’re growing on me.” He shrugged with a lazy smile. “For some reason, the more time I spend with you, the more I can’t help myself.”
Riley wasn’t sure if that was a good idea or not.
I do wish that there had been a bit more Garrett-and-Riley-together-time in the book–really, we get very little of it overall. The end of the book is also very abrupt. Overall, though, this was an entertaining read from an author I’ll definitely read more of in the future.
Rating: 4 stars / B+
Angie Stanton never planned on writing books—she wanted to be a Rockette. However, growing up in rural America with her brothers’ 4-H pigs as pets, she found that dance didn’t quite work out. Instead, she became an avid daydreamer. After years of perfecting stories in her head, she began to write them down, and the rest is history. When not writing, she loves watching natural disaster movies, going to Broadway musicals, and dipping French fries in chocolate shakes.