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Paperback published by Knopf Books for Young Readers (Random House Children's Books)

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About This Book
WHEN 15-YEAR-OLD MICK Nichols opens the wrong e-mail, he learns a terrible secret: His stepmother is having an affair with a man named Alexander Selkirk. Mick is stunned. Should he tell his father, confront his stepmother, or keep it all to himself? And who, exactly, is Alexander Selkirk? Mick becomes obsessed with the infidelity, in spite of some serious distractions. Distractions like Lisa Doyle, the religious field-hockey player with the coppery red hair. Like the surprising (but appreciated) affections of Myra Vidal, a famously gorgeous college freshman with a secret of her own. And at the moment Mick discovers Selkirk’s true identity, he realizes his problems are all zipped up together—and that he may have to go to drastic lengths to untangle them.

“The McNeals spin a wonderfully rich story.”—Kirkus Reviews

“A well-honed novel. . . . Readers will be sucked in.”—Publishers Weekly


From the Hardcover edition.
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WHEN 15-YEAR-OLD MICK Nichols opens the wrong e-mail, he learns a terrible secret: His stepmother is having an affair with a man named Alexander Selkirk. Mick is stunned. Should he tell his father, confront his stepmother, or keep it all to himself? And who, exactly, is Alexander Selkirk? Mick becomes obsessed with the infidelity, in spite of some serious distractions. Distractions like Lisa Doyle, the religious field-hockey player with the coppery red hair. Like the surprising (but appreciated) affections of Myra Vidal, a famously gorgeous college freshman with a secret of her own. And at the moment Mick discovers Selkirk’s true identity, he realizes his problems are all zipped up together—and that he may have to go to drastic lengths to untangle them.

“The McNeals spin a wonderfully rich story.”—Kirkus Reviews

“A well-honed novel. . . . Readers will be sucked in.”—Publishers Weekly


From the Hardcover edition.
Product Details
Paperback (304 pages)
Published: September 14, 2004
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Imprint: Knopf Books for Young Readers
ISBN: 9780375830983
Other books byLaura McNeal
  • Dark Water

    Dark Water
    Fifteen-year-old Pearl DeWitt and her mother live in Fallbrook, California, where it’s sunny 340 days of the year, and where her uncle owns a grove of 900 avocado trees. Uncle Hoyt hires migrant workers regularly, but Pearl doesn’t pay much attention to them . . . until Amiel. From the moment she sees him, Pearl is drawn to this boy who keeps to himself, fears being caught by la migra, and is mysteriously unable to talk. And after coming across Amiel’s makeshift hut near Agua Prieta Creek, Pearl falls into a precarious friendship—and a forbidden romance. Then the wildfires strike. Fallbrook—the town of marigolds and palms, blood oranges and sweet limes—is threatened by the Agua Prieta fire, and a mandatory evacuation order is issued. But Pearl knows that Amiel is in the direct path of the fire, with no one to warn him, no way to get out. Slipping away from safety and her family, Pearl moves toward the dark creek, where the smoke has become air, the air smoke. Laura McNeal has crafted a beautiful and haunting novel full of peril, desperation, and love. From the Hardcover edition.

    The Decoding of Lana Morris

    The Decoding of Lana Morris
    Sixteen-year-old Lana Morris wishes her life were different, that she were somewhere else, someone else. Her foster mother wants her gone, she's stuck taking care of the other kids in the house, she longs to become closer to her foster father, and the only cool people around refuse to acknowledge her. Then Lana stumbles into Miss Hekkity's mysterious shop, and she begins to realize that she might actually have the power to change things—to make some of her wishes come true. But wishing isn't always as harmless as it seems. . . . Award-winning authors Laura and Tom McNeal weave a warmhearted and suspenseful story about the power—and danger—of a wish. From the Hardcover edition.

    Crushed

    Crushed
    Audrey and her best friends Lea and C.C. have just arrived at Jemison High from the one-room private school where they spent grades six through ten, where they performed Gilbert and Sullivan musicals, where they adored Edith Wharton. They’re a nerdy little trio, so everyone is shocked when the handsome new guy, Wickham Hill, asks Audrey out. Audrey is soon so smitten that she hardly pays any mind to the vicious underground newspaper at school–or to that strange lurking guy in World Cultures. Before long, it seems everyone at Jemison High is worried about getting crushed–by friends, by enemies, by a mysterious reporter. From the Hardcover edition.

    Crooked

    Crooked
    Clara Wilson has a lot on her mind. Her best friend, Gerri, has started moving in circles that will never in a million years include Clara and her crooked nose. Clara's parents are fighting again, and her mom keeps talking about teaching in France. At least Clara still has Hambone, her loyal dog. And her crush on Amos McKenzie, of course. Amos McKenzie doesn't much like home these days. His dad's corny questions are bugging him more than usual, and his mom's gone religious for no apparent reason. On top of that, he's starting to fall for a major dink, Clara Wilson. And as it turns out, he's not the only one... The Tripp Brothers are the biggest delinquents in town. They smash mailboxes, shoplift groceries, and cruise around in their Seduck (half sedan, half truck). They've just turned their sights on the school's newest, cutest couple. And that can only mean one thing for Clara and Amos: danger. Clara and Amos--their lives turned upside down by each other, their families, and the two meanest brothers in town--discover that honesty may be the answer...but it can be awfully hard to find. In this emotionally compelling and suspenseful young adult novel, Laura and Tom McNeal present a searingly accurate look at life in ninth grade--where thrills, heartbreak, and intimidation can take place at a locker, in the lunchroom, or in a bathroom stall. From the Hardcover edition.

Favorite QuotesFROM THIS BOOK
  • It wasn't a normal Thursday, but all day long it had seemed like one, so when the final bell rang, Mick Nichols did what he normally did.

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