By: Allen Zadoff
Pub date: September 8th, 2009
Life used to be so simple for Andrew Zansky—hang with the Model U.N. guys, avoid gym class, and eat and eat and eat. He’s used to not fitting in: into his family, his sports-crazed school, or his size 48 pants.
But not anymore. Andrew just met April, the new girl at school and the instant love of his life! He wants to find a way to win her over, but how? When O. Douglas, the heartthrob quarterback and high school legend, saves him from getting beaten up by the school bully, Andrew sees his chance to get in with the football squad.
Is it possible to reinvent yourself in the middle of high school? Andrew is willing to try. But he’s going to have to make some changes. Fast.
Can a funny fat kid be friends with a football superstar? Can he win over the Girl of his Dreams? Can he find a way to get his Mom and Dad back together?
How far should you go to be the person you really want to be?
Andrew is about to find out.
"Do you ever get angry?" O. Douglas says.
"All the time," I say. I adjust my helmet strap so it won’t cut into my double chin.
"Not just angry. Seriously pissed off. Like you want to hurt someone."
"I guess.""That's the secret. You have to go that place and spend a little time," he says. I want to ask him more, but he peels away to set up for the next drill. No more football sleds. Coach has us form two lines and face each other man-to-man...
Find the remainder of this excerpt here. Visit Allen Zadoff's website here.
By: Libba Bray
Pub date: September 22nd, 2009
All 16-year-old Cameron wants is to get through high school—and life in general—with a minimum of effort. It’s not a lot to ask. But that’s before he’s given some bad news: he’s sick and he’s going to die. Which totally sucks.
Hope arrives in the winged form of Dulcie, a loopy punk angel/possible hallucination with a bad sugar habit. She tells Cam there is a cure—if he’s willing to go in search of it. With the help of a death-obsessed, video-gaming dwarf and a yard gnome, Cam sets off on the mother of all road trips through a twisted America into the heart of what matters most.
The best day of my life happened when I was five and almost died at Disney World.
I'm sixteen now, so you can imagine that's left me with quite a few days of major suckage.
Like Career Day? Really? Do we need to devote an entire six hours out of the high school year to having life counselors tell you all the jobs you could potentially blow at? Is there a reason for dodgeball? Pep rallies? Rad soda commercials featuring Poker Days smug, fake-tanned face? I ask you.
But back to the best day of my life, Disney, and my near-death experience.
I know what you're thinking: WTF? Who dies at Disney World? It's full of spinning teacups and magical princesses and bigassed chipmunks walking around waving like it's absolutely normal for jumbo-sized stuffed animals to come to life and pose for photo ops. Like, seriously...
Find the remainder of this excerpt here. Visit Libba Bray's website here.