The Attraction: House of Illusion
by Rick Polito
(The Attraction, #1)
Publication date: November 18th 2021
Genres: Comedy, Mystery, Young Adult
From the author of Off Trail comes a hilarious mystery about what happens when a chilling trip leads to a lost fortune.
Nate and Lily knew their mother was different. All it took was a hunch or a bad feeling and the family would be uprooted and moving to a different apartment or even a different town. But when the two are torn out of their life in the ritzy North Bay for the summer and dropped in “the Mississippi of California” on the Sacramento River Delta, Nate Caldwell and his sister Lily see it as one more move in a series of lurching disruptions driven by their mother’s suspicion that something or someone is after them.
When they settle into life around their uncle’s House of Illusion roadside attraction, Nate meets Mia—who makes all the girls he knew in the North Bay seem shallow and dull—and begins to connect with local teens who couldn’t be more different than the privileged classmates he left behind.
It’s not until they learn that the story behind the attraction is more than just a tale for the tourists, that Nate begins to figure out what drove his mother’s suspicious nature.
“An entertaining, comic, but also thoughtful coming-of-age tale.” – Kirkus Reviews on Polito’s Off Trail.
As a career journalist and a former newspaper reporter, Rick Polito has covered everything from political scandals and natural disasters to taking his dog to a pet psychic seminar. Polito attended the University of Missouri School of Journalism and worked at newspapers in Arizona and California. Along the way, he won multiple state and national feature and news writing awards and fit in a stretch as a syndicated humor columnist. Jokes from that column have been quoted in places as varied as The Tonight Show and The New Yorker, with his viral Wizard of Oz synopsis tweeted, posted and shared hundreds of millions of times. Once told that he “views the world through smartass glasses,” Polito took it as a compliment and prides himself on “thinking three jokes ahead,” a skill he has taken on stage as an occasional standup comic. Off Trail is his first published novel, and Polito says he writes in the young adult genre because he appreciates the “urgency” of the teen years and believes it takes readers to a place that is both dramatic and familiar to everyone. A father of two and a native of Arizona, the setting for Off Trail, Polito now lives in Denver, sharing his COVID bubble with his girlfriend Angela and Rocket, the insane Jack Russell Terrier.