Eileen Rendahl Un-Veiled

ISBN 13: 9781416532712

Un-Veiled

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9781416532712: Un-Veiled

Rumor has it...

...that the Zimmerman twins, Ginger and Cinnamon, are the hot hair-stylists in Santa Bonita. Their Do It Up salon has been swamped ever since hometown-Hollywood-star Courtney Day had her wedding hair done there. Now the sisters know every secret of every bride-to-be that crosses their threshold: does she or doesn't she, will she or won't she, how often, and with whom?

What happens at Do It Up stays at Do It Up -- until Craig Esposito strolls into the salon with the latest wedding party. Cinnamon's dazed reaction suggests there's something only she knows about this handsome cousin to the groom -- making Ginger wonder if he's the mystery father of Cinnamon's young daughter (which should kill her attraction to him, but doesn't). Now the sisters' own secrets are the subject of small-town gossip...and Ginger is about to tease out some surprising truths about her family, her town -- and herself.

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About the Author:

Eileen Rendahl is the author of the Downtown Press novels Balancing in High Heels and Do Me, Do My Roots, which was nominated for a RITA Award. Her short fiction appears in the New Year's story collection In One Year and Out the Other. She lives near her tight-knit family in California.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Chapter One

February 8, 2006

If it wasn't the wedding of the decade, it most certainly was the wedding of the year. Courtney Day and Brett Sedd vowed to love and cherish each other in front of a crowd so beautiful, it would have made Michelangelo weep. No one (except maybe the groom) was more beautiful, however, than the bride, who returned to her hometown of Santa Bonita, California, to have her hair done by her high school chums Cinnamon and Ginger Zimmerman at Do It Up for the lavish beachfront ceremony complete with fireworks.

Cinnamon's rune card for the day was Haegl, the Dark Goddess, the goddess of chaos and creativity.

"I don't understand," Cinnamon said, waving the card at me as she packed Sage's things up for a day at Grandma Rosemary's. We were thrilled to get the wedding business, but it did mean finding somebody to babysit Cinnamon's seven-year-old daughter, Sage. Keeping her at the salon didn't work. The last time we'd tried that, Sage had burned herself on a curling iron, spilled a soda all over the counter that almost hit the bride's veil, and generally pestered Cinnamon until I was afraid Cinn was going to duct-tape her daughter to a wall. Wouldn't that have given everyone something new to talk about? We could maybe even have made the Santa Bonita Daily Mail with that one.

"Courtney's a blonde. A white-blonde even. You can't be blonder than her without having no pigment in your hair at all," Cinnamon said, continuing to fret about her rune card. I wondered if I could duct-tape Cinn to a wall. But then, who would do Courtney's hair? I knew Cinn had something in mind already, probably something I wouldn't be able to pull off. And when an honest-to-goodness movie star is getting her hair done for her wedding at your salon, you want your A team playing. "She's even a real blonde, unless she started dying her hair in second grade, which I sincerely doubt. So this doesn't make sense. Why would I get the dark goddess?"

I resisted the urge to tell Cinn exactly what the odds were that she would eventually pick the goddess of chaos and creativity from the deck of twenty-five cards. I had taken statistics last semester and was pretty sure I could calculate that one in my head (four percent, if you'd like to know). I also wanted to tell her that because random chance dropped the goddess of chaos and creativity into our lives on that day didn't mean that anything chaotic or creative was going to happen. Or that the chances of the card she'd randomly picked having anything to do with what our day held were about as good as the chances of the alignment of the stars on the day we were born determining our personalities. Unfortunately, it wouldn't have worked. Cinn loves astrology almost as much as she loves runes.

I was pretty sure that the gravitational pull of Calista Flockhart probably had more impact on my birth than the stars Cinnamon consulted so regularly. My sister, however, doesn't allow facts to dissuade her from her favorite theories, and especially not from New Age-y belief systems, which she mixes and matches like a kid with a new wardrobe full of Underoos.

We were born all of seven minutes apart, and looks-wise we are peas in a pod. Personality-wise? We could get into a "tastes great/less filling" debate at the drop of a hat, but then we'd just be one more set of twins in a beer commercial, and I really don't think the universe needs any more of that.

"I'm sure it will all be clear by the end of the day," I said, and gave the screen door a little kick at the bottom so it would unstick. We all headed for the Mustang; I crossed my fingers that she'd start. That kind of chaos I did not need.

I twitched back the curtain of the shop and was nearly blinded by the flashes. "Geez, Courtney, I think every photographer in California might be out there."

Courtney giggled. It was good to know she still did that. It was less good to know that she also still tried to bum cigarettes, borrow jewelry, and cadge free snacks. "Isn't it great, Ginger?"

I tried to peer through the slit in the curtains without actually moving them and saw a sea of camera lenses trained unerringly on Do It Up. "I guess. If that's what you want." Having my every move recorded did not exactly sound like a good time to me, but then again, I wasn't trying to climb the ranks in Hollywood, and I have spent way too much time being the object of gossip here in Santa Bonita to make it sound like a good idea ever.

"It's not a matter of want or not want, Ginger," Courtney said from my sister's chair, her face a perky little ball on top of the purple cape Cinnamon had draped around her. "It's a matter of survival. This wedding will put Brett and me on the cover of every magazine in every grocery store for the next month, which means I'll be in front of every director and producer casting a movie. I'm getting tired of the sitcom schedule. Plus, don't you think half the girls we went to high school with are eating their hearts out?"

"No," Cinnamon said from behind Courtney as she slid Courtney's hair off her curling iron, using a comb so as not to damage the ringlet. "They all are. Every single one of them."

They could have gotten married anywhere. Hawaii. Greece. The Taj Mahal. Someplace where the morning mist would be guaranteed to burn off so no one's hair would frizz. Instead, they were getting married in Santa Bonita and everyone in town knew. Hell, everybody in the country knew, except possibly those who chose to live in caves.

Talk about getting the best revenge. After high school graduation, Courtney had left for Los Angeles as little more than the Santa Bonita version of trailer trash, and she was coming back the closest thing that America had to a princess without becoming a Kennedy, which as we all know can be detrimental to your health.

Her star had risen fast. First there'd been a toothpaste ad with her happy-go-lucky California-girl grin splashed on billboards all over the country. Then there'd been a guest appearance on E.R. as a bipolar college student whose blonde gamine looks captured the heart of Dr. Barnett. After that, there'd been an appearance on one of the Law & Orders as a rape victim whose pluck and courage helped the detectives catch her assailant. It seemed like those had barely aired when she got her big break: the part of Brandy, the feisty law-student-cum-cocktail-waitress on Bar None, the Cheers-meets-The Paper Chase sitcom that had been number one in the country three seasons in a row now.

Since then, there'd been a few movies, too. A clever indie to give her some street cred and a romantic comedy to test her box-office draw. But her biggest role to date was the fiancée of Brett Sedd, the pouty-lipped blond superstar whose name could make a thousand adolescent girls (and a few well past adolescence) swoon.

Having the wedding here was absolutely the perfect revenge on all the snotty rich girls who had gotten places on the pep squad instead of Courtney, despite the fact that she could jump higher and cheer louder, and on all the snotty rich boys who had wanted to spend time with her behind the stadium after the game, but hadn't wanted to take her to the Santa Bonita Country Club for the big winter dance.

Courtney could have had her hair done anywhere, or flown someone in. Instead, she was having her hair done right here at Do It Up, the shop Cinnamon and I own. I guess she felt partial to us. I had to admit, it was satisfying to play even a tiny role in serving up Courtney's sweet, cold dish of vengeance. It's not like Cinnamon and I went to the country club winter dance, either. After all, we're "those girls."

It's actually very unfair that we have slutty reputations. We are not slutty. If you start with Grandma, most of us are the exact opposite of slutty. It seems that Zimmerman women give their hearts once and only once. We just don't seem to give them to the right men.

Oh, and we seem to get knocked up as well. So far, I'm the exception to the rule.

Courtney settled back into the chair with a satisfied smile on her face. I tried to peer through the curtains without twitching them. Apparently, the photographers had seen that trick before and I once again received the supernova blast in my face. "I dunno, Courtney. I think I might get sick of having people watch every damn thing I do."

She shrugged. "There are ways to make sure they see what you want them to see and don't see so much of the other stuff. It's not so different from living here."

She had that right. Sometimes I felt like if I farted in the bathtub, they'd be discussing it over at Café Ole! before the bubble popped. Still, there were ways to keep a few secrets if you really tried. Cinnamon and I had certainly been privy to more than a few. "And you wanted them to see you ducking in here to get your hair done?"

"No. You wanted them to see me ducking in here to get my hair done. I'd be willing to bet you guys end up with more business than you can shake a curling iron at, after this." Courtney cocked her head, but Cinnamon straightened it back out immediately.

"It's true, Ginger," Cinnamon said. She'd seemed so absorbed in Courtney's hair that I hadn't realized she was still listening. Cinn often goes into almost a trancelike state when creating a particularly intricate updo, and Courtney's hair was nothing if not intricate. "This is great publicity for us."

I knew they were right. I wasn't sure it was going to translate into us making more money, but I hoped it would generate at least enough to replace all that grass that was getting trampled in front of the salon.

After Cinnamon finished Courtney's hair, she moved on to her entourage: her co-star from Bar None who played the downtrodden single-mother waitress, and another young up-and-coming actress who had played the quirky small-town girl slowly losing her mind while working at a fast-food drive-through in the indie movie Courtney had done. They w...

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Book Description Downtown Press, Australia, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Does she or doesn t she? Only her hairdresser knows for sure. Lately, Ginger and Cinnamon Zimmerman are wedding hairdressers to anybody who is anybody, so they hear everybody s secrets - and in their small coastal California town, there are a surprising number of those. But the sisters have a few secrets of their own: not even Ginger knows who the father of Cinnamon s daughter is. And while some secrets are content to remain buried, others seem determined to spring to the surface. Once Ginger starts digging, what she discovers shocks her, makes her re-examine how she s viewed the people around her, and finally, clears the way for her to start living life on her own terms. Bookseller Inventory # BZV9781416532712

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Book Description Downtown Press, Australia, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Does she or doesn t she? Only her hairdresser knows for sure. Lately, Ginger and Cinnamon Zimmerman are wedding hairdressers to anybody who is anybody, so they hear everybody s secrets - and in their small coastal California town, there are a surprising number of those. But the sisters have a few secrets of their own: not even Ginger knows who the father of Cinnamon s daughter is. And while some secrets are content to remain buried, others seem determined to spring to the surface. Once Ginger starts digging, what she discovers shocks her, makes her re-examine how she s viewed the people around her, and finally, clears the way for her to start living life on her own terms. Bookseller Inventory # BZV9781416532712

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