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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Something to check out...

Lizzie knows it isn’t right to eavesdrop, but is it really eavesdropping if her neighbor Maura makes all of her phone calls on her parents’ pool deck in easy earshot of Lizzie’s backyard? And of course it’s wrong to go snooping around on someone else’s computer, but is it Lizzie’s fault that Maura keeps her computer turned on (and logged in to Facebook) all the time?

Lizzie Richard’s father has moved the family around every few years to advance his career, so she has never had a chance to develop the kind of “BFF” relationships she thinks most kids have. She’s bracing herself for another lonely year at her third high school when her new neighbor Maura gets sick of watching her little brother when she could be partying. Thanks to Maura’s plotting, Lizzie becomes everyone’s new favorite babysitter. Seeing her opportunity, Lizzie breaks her strict parents’ rules and uses Maura’s computer to create a secret Email address and Facebook account. She is quickly friended by Missy, a fellow transfer student as eager for a friend as she is. Things are looking up for Lizzie until Maura’s ex-boyfriend Paul sets his eye on Missy. Caught between her new best friend and the neighbor whose friendship promises instant popularity, Lizzie doesn’t know what to do—because she’s fallen for Paul, too.

An Excerpt

I like the makeup better when I put it on myself. I apply it more lightly than they had, so it looks more natural. Try as I might, I’m not very handy at hairstyling, though. I can’t seem to tease the roots as Katherine instructed, and I have no luck with the up-dos they showed me. In the end, Katherine produces a small set of scissors and, while I hold my breath, trims some fringy bangs and layers, which we iron flat into a funky style. When we’re done, I don’t look like me, but I look sort of good. And good thing, too, because all the little pieces she cut are never going to fit into a ponytail.

“See,” Maura says. “That wasn’t so hard.”

“Maybe we should come raid your closet and see what we can do with that,” Katherine says, laughing smugly. She has gotten a little friendlier as the day has gone on. When I let her cut my hair, I think that sealed the deal. She is willing to at least consider extending friendship to me.

“You won’t find much interesting in my closet,” I say.

“What, no secrets?” Maura asks, suddenly turning our conversation away from the safe realm of appearances. My heart pounds. I’m not ready for this kind of conversation. Is this where they turn on me?

“No,” I say. “No cute clothes or skeletons.”

“How disappointing,” Maura says. “I thought there was a wild child in you that we had yet to uncover.”

“You’ve met my parents. They don’t allow much for wildness.”

“Exactly. Kids with strict parents are usually the ones who let it all out when they step outside their parents’ grasp.”

“I guess I’m still pretty much within their grasp,” I say.

Maura makes a tsk sound. “I thought for sure there was more to you, Lizzie,” she says.

I shrug. I wish there was more to me, too.
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15 thoughts:

Diane Vanaskie Mulligan said...

Thanks for hosting me today! I hope your readers in enjoy the excerpt. I'll stop back later today to answer questions if anyone has them.


Mary Preston said...

My family moved each time my Father was promoted, so I can totally relate. It's not always easy.


Rita Wray said...

I can't imagine moving around and leaving my friends.

Diane Vanaskie Mulligan said...

Yeah, actually my inspiration for the plot of this story was trying to imagine a scenario that I personally would hate. I was lucky enough to never move as a child or transfer schools, but I have had a lot transfer students in my classes who are starting over as juniors or seniors, and I wanted to explore what that might be like!

Anonymous said...

Intriguing excerpt!


Unknown said...

What inspired the character of Lizzie. DId you go through a similair phase as a young adult or is she like someone else you know?

fencingromein at hotmail dot com

Chelsea B. said...

I really like the cover-- it's so eye-catching. Which is good, because I hope people take notice of this book. It sounds amazing!


Diane Vanaskie Mulligan said...


Thanks for the question! Lizzie is definitely like me in some ways, but this book is not at all autobiographical. I never moved towns or transferred schools, and I never had frenemy like Maura. My inspiration was the situation of having to transfer schools, and I began by placing myself in the situation, but as the story evolved, Lizzie became less and less me and more herself.


Diane Vanaskie Mulligan said...


Thanks for your kind words! My sister did the cover design for me. My goal was a good ebook cover since I know most of my book sales will be for electronic copies. I think it looks cool on a Kindle screen, and I hope readers do, too.


Catherine Lee said...

Jennifer...I'm a librarian, too. I can't believe that I haven't been to your blog before. How neat. That's one thing I love about blog tours--discovering new blogs (as well as discovering new authors).
catherinelee100 at gmail dot com

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting Diane on your blog. We appreciate it!

Karen H said...

Just popping in to say HI and sorry I missed visiting with you on party day! Hope you all had a good time!

kareninnc at gmail dot com

Andrea Silva said...

I just finished reading the book and what I liked most about us that it's not your typical YA read where everything would go Lizzie's way. Thanks for a great story.

Mary Preston said...

I'm intrigued by this one & I'm looking forward to seeing all the trouble Lizzie gets herself into.


Diane Vanaskie Mulligan said...

Sorry I missed some of the commenters who stopped by late in the day, but thanks for following the tour! I'd love to stay in touch of twitter or facebook!

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