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Shamrock Harding is, ironically, a little down on her luck. After spending five years at a prestigious girls' boarding school, she's heading home--just as she was starting to fit in. Now she not only has to leave her new friends behind, but reunite with her old ones. Most of whom she didn't part amicably with.
What's really bothering Shamrock, though, is her family. Thirteen-year-old Sassy is finally starting to live up to her name. She wants nothing to do with Shamrock, the sister who seemingly abandoned her when she was only eight. Then there's Dax (read: hot Polish exchange student who doesn't speak a word of English) to contend with. He's living in the room across from Shamrock's and causing trouble nobody believes he's capable of.
Oh, and Harry. Shamrock's old friend and childhood crush. While he was cool back when they were eleven--a tree-climbing, adventuresome partner in crime--now he's just plain boring. And, okay, maybe a little bit intriguing. Although it's hard to get to know him, since he avoids her like she's a pariah.
But then again, she is.
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They are an ultra-famous threesome. She is a normal girl. They are an ultra-famous threesome in need of an opening act for their fourth world tour. She is is a normal girl who fits the bill. Never mind the fact that she can't stand them. It's not like it matters.
Laughlin Hart, Wesley Allendar and Hector Dubois are the teenage faces that currently make up the biggest phenom on the planet--boyband Tipping Point. Girls go crazy over them, and who could blame them? They write their own songs and play their own instruments. They're charismatic. They're virtually perfect.
Or far from it. Depends on who you're asking; if it's Ina Galet, you're not going to hear anything positive.
Ina herself used to be obsessed, back before anybody even knew who they were. She blasted their EP in her bedroom, lived for every adorable thing they said, and made it her mission to know everything about them there was to know. She was fifteen-years-old and utterly smitten.
Then she met them.
That was two years ago, and despite their grating personalities, Tipping Point has taken the world by storm. Then the chance arises to be the opening act on their fourth tour. It's too good an opportunity to pass up, especially for an aspiring singer-songwriter like her. That, and Ina's mother practically forces her to audition. Despite her distaste for them, opening their shows would secure her name to the spotlight forever. That is, if she can even get the job.
Ina Galet is a lot of things--stubborn, determined. An aspiring singer-songwriter. A fan of popular boyband Tipping Point is not one of those, although it used to be. Until she met them.
But that was two years ago, and Ina is doing perfectly fine without them, thank you very much. The rest of the world is a different story. The band have caught on, and they aren't slowing down any time soon. In fact, they're about to head off on their fourth world tour. Before they go, they need just one thing--an opening act.
It's not very likely that she'll get the job, but Ina auditions. If you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right? And, to her surprise, it looks like Ina's joining them.
Five months on the road with three heartthrobs she can't stand. Sounds like fun.
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Something Like Friendship
In the little town of Trent, South Dakota, Devon Smith bags groceries at her stepdad's store. Here, dreams are suffocated young. The proof lies in her friend, Brianna, who already has a baby at seventeen. Most girls do.
Devon doesn't want that. She wants more. And she finds that temporary escape in the bristles of a paintbrush, until every room in her old house is a different color of the rainbow. Then, three months later, she does it all over again.
But the vibrant walls of home are fast loosing their appeal for Devon. Only one other place in the suffocating town captures her interests:
The Gardner Street house.
It's ancient, but the architecture is gorgeous. And it's been on the market for seven years. So Devon formulates a plan: if, God forbid, she can't get out of Trent, she's going to buy the house and fix it up. Daily bike rides by feed her desire. Up until the moment she passes, and the FOR SALE sign is gone from the yard.
Devon's willing to do anything to achieve this dream, to give herself a bit of happiness. But it comes at a cost. She can paint the Gardner Street house--if she does it with the owner's son.
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Sally knows this. So does the cute cashier down the street, who's paid witness to her tantrums too many times to count. And the old woman who lives above them, the one that bangs on the ceiling whenever Jacie is throwing a fit. Sally knows, but she's good at pretending.
Life is hardly idealistic when you're living in the slums of Norfolk, Virgina, but Sally deals with it. She's become a pro at cooking grilled cheese when the stove's not working. She knows how to make her own mouse traps. And she tries to keep their dingy apartment clean, although sometimes that's hard.
Between working a job, going to school, and looking after Jacie, there's hardly time to think about all the things she wants. Until Jacie is expelled from school. With their mother gone most of the time, that leaves Sally to take care of her.
She's forced to drop out of school and spend her days with her sister, who turns out to be a lot worse off than she thought. Their mother is in denial. And Sally has nowhere to turn.
Decisions must be made. But it hardly seems fair to the sixteen-year-old girl who has to make them for two.