Ambitious by Monica McKayhan

Ambitious by Monica McKayhan

Release Date: August 23, 2011
Publisher: Kimani
Series: Premiere High, Book 1
Rated: YA 13+
Format: eGalley
Source: NetGalley
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository

"There's only one thing tougher than getting in to Premiere High: Staying in..."

At Premiere School of the Performing Arts, nicknamed Premiere High, talent is a must and competition is fierce. But the payoff is worth it. Some of the biggest stars in music, movies and dance are on the alumni list. New student Marisol Garcia dreams of taking her place among them one day. And being chosen to take part in a local dance contest where a film role is the prize could possibly be her first step into the spotlight.
Almost as big a challenge: getting Drew Bishop to see her as more than a friend. But Drew is preoccupied with his own dilemma of either playing basketball, which could be a free ticket to college, or pursuing the stage where he really comes alive. But every dream comes with a price. And as Marisol becomes consumed with winning, the once straight-A student risks losing everything. Starting with her parents' approval, her friends and her place at Premiere High...

This took me a while to get to, as the reading pile has expanded hugely, but surprisingly, it's not a very long read. It only took me around a day to complete it. I liked the story line and the characters well enough, but it was a book that didn't really WOW me. Unlike most books about the fine arts, this didn't really show the difficulty and struggles of dance, acting and music. Sure, they touched upon some points, but nothing too much that was like in Virtuosity or Various Positions.

The characters were well thought out and of course, very unique. The story is told from two perspectives of the main characters, Mari and Drew. Mari was the more dominant main character, as by how the story is mainly about her.
I found Mari a 'neutral' character. Like, I didn't find her extremely exciting nor made me feel like throwing a brick at her head. She could have been a little more interesting, but I generally had no problem with her.
Drew is the other main character and Mari's love interest. I didn't like him at all, I'm sorry to say. He's too much of a womanizer, to put it frankly. He kept checking out other girls, using them for homework etc. and then keeps thinking about Mari. Really ticked me off.

The supporting characters I did love though. Jasmine and Preston were probably the most interesting people in this book, along with Nico (Mari's brother), yet he only appeared in little bits of the book.
Preston I LOVED. I wish he'd have been the love interest instead of Drew. He's sweet, really funny and doesn't use girls the way Drew does. Jasmine actually had character. She faced a struggle, helping at home, had parents with low income jobs. THIS, people, is substance that is needed for a book. Can't help it– we readers are leopards, hunting down the more interesting characters.

Overall, this book is great if you want a short story to read about the "lighter" side to the life of a student (or two) and their problems in the fine arts.

If you like this, try...

  • Forever in Blue by Ann Brashares ◆ Goodreads


  1. Just wanted to let you know I gave you the Versatile Blogger Award today! =)

    You can check out the post here:

  2. Awesome review! I haven't heard of this book, and after reading your review I'm pretty sure I'd become annoyed with all of the same things that bugged you about the story. I laughed when you wrote the part about readers being leopards--that was great! =D

    -Shanon @ Escaping With Fiction

  3. Great review! These characters sound great! Might check it out sometime. :]


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