Rules of Seduction by Jenna Mullins {Review}

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

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Admittedly, I've read this story before. Years ago, this book was part of an online writing community that I had the pleasure of reading quite a few years before publication sometime in the late 2000s. Needless to say, when I saw that one of my favorite stories of all time was being rewritten, revamped and published into the e-book format, I was ecstatic. I had high hopes going in and I was not let down in the slightest. 

Yes, I knew the general plot. Yes, I knew the end. Yes, I was somewhat familiar with the characters. But not one of those bits changed my feeling about the story. It was funny, smart, quirky, and an all around great summer read. It wasn't heavy, wordy, or over-saturated with drama. Don't get me wrong, it had its fair share to keep you scrolling and reading on to see what sticky situations Dani managed to get herself into, but it wasn't too over the top either!
The first rule of seduction is: don’t fall in love.  
Fresh out of college, Dani Young heads for the LA sun to chase her dream of becoming a screenwriter-director. So when her former BFF turned actress Elise offers Dani the opportunity to work on the hit teen show Vamp Camp, Dani can’t refuse, even if it comes at a price: Elise wants Dani to seduce her boyfriend, Vamp Camp superstar Tate Lawrence. Turns out Elise has some major trust issues, and needs Dani to test Tate’s faith. The only rule: don’t fall in love with him. Sure, Dani doesn’t mind occasionally glimpsing Tate’s megawatt smile…or accidentally-on-purpose brushing up against his perfect torso…but she’s no fool. There’s no way she’d ever fall for a shallow celebrity and no way one would fall for her, a lanky movie nerd.  
But amidst vampire-crazed fans, a conniving fellow intern, and a devilishly handsome showrunner, Dani feels like all the rules she used to know have disappeared, except for one: Love doesn’t play by the rules.
This story has a component that is one of my favorite things in the entire world: lists. Almost every chapter has a list of rules about something. There are the self-titled Rules of Seduction, Rules to Stay True to Yourself, and my personal favorite rule, Rules of Checking Out Tate, a Hot Guy (appropriately just one rule, "don't get caught"). Dani's lists of rules ranging from driving in Los Angeles to how to be a super intern are funny, surprisingly informative, and a wonderful insight into her character. Her obsession with lists itself is a pretty great indicator as to who she is.

There are a few different friendships throughout this book (and one unlikely moment at the end that really warmed my heart). There's the obvious friendship between Dani and Elise that dates back long before the two are in LA and back to when they were growing up in the midwest. Elise was the mastermind between the entire scheme between Dani and Tate, rooted in the insecurity of her relationship. Then there's the butterfly-inducing friendship with Tate, crazy scheme aside. I especially love his character and how it takes the bad boy stigma and essentially smashes it to pieces with his behind-the-scenes and true personality. Just goes to show how gross gross gross the media can be.

I think though, my hands down favorite friendship throughout the book was the one between Dani and her roommate, Brit. She was nothing but supportive, offered an ear and advice when Dani wanted to talk (though didn't want to listen...), and essentially helped Dani get her sh*t back together. But she had her own goals, too! I loved that her accomplishments didn't end at helping the main protagonist get what she wanted. Three cheers for secondary characters with their own agendas!

I read this book in three solid sessions. Two mornings I stayed in bed for an extra hour and a half to read through this and I finally finished it last week at work when it was slow. It's definitely something, if time allows it, that you could finish in a sitting. It's the perfect summer read, a nice addition to your e-book library. It sort of smashes the wonderful illusion of Los Angeles and reveals some of the behind the scenes drama and politics, proving that it's not all that it's cracked up to be. While this is a work of fiction, I have an inkling that some of these revelations of the "true" Hollywood aren't too far off.

Overall, if you're looking for a new YA lit book to read and prefer the e-book formats, I recommend giving this book a shot! You'll laugh, you'll be surprised, you might even cry if you're not reading at work and want to keep your composure.

* You can follow the author, Jenna Mullins on Twitter @jbomb11. Here's the Amazon, Nook, and iBook links to the book *

* LOL at me trying to talk about books. I sincerely apologize *

1 comment

  1. I've been in need of a fun summer read! I'm excited to check this one out. Thanks for the recommendation!

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