Leslea Newman Jailbait

ISBN 13: 9781435274853

Jailbait

 
9781435274853: Jailbait
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Andrea Robin Kaplan is a clique unto herself.

In other words, she has no friends. Her only goal is get through high school with the least amount of humiliation possible, which should be easy— nothing ever happens in the suburbs, right? Wrong.

One day, as Andi walks home from school, a little brown VW drives up and she meets Frank. Frank makes her feel beautiful and special. With Frank, Andi forgets how alone she is.

From boundary breaking author Lesléa Newman comes a haunting story about a girl who is all alone, and a man old enough to know better.
From the Hardcover edition.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Lesléa Newman is the author of several books for young readers as well as adults. She lives in Northhampton, Massachusetts, and her Web site is www.lesleakids.com.
From the Hardcover edition.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

One
So this is how it started: It's September 7, 1971, the first day of tenth grade, and I'm walking home after school because I hate taking the bus. No, cancel that. I refuse to take the bus because something always happens on it that makes me look like an idiot. Either Donald Caruso, this junior who just lives to make my life miserable, will stick his big ugly foot out in the aisle to trip me and then laugh his head off like that's the funniest thing in the world, or Hillary Jacoby, who is so desperate to be popular she picks on the lowest of the low (me), will accidentally-on-purpose smush a wad of Bazooka bubble gum into my hair and then look around to see if anyone is impressed with how clever she is.
But that's just kid stuff compared to what happened on a certain day last spring when I woke up late and almost missed the bus. The bus driver saw me running in his rearview mirror and slammed on his brakes so I could catch up. Now, I'm not a person who runs very often, and I guess things were flapping in the breeze because as soon as I climbed on board, before I even had a chance to catch my breath, the whole bus burst into song:
"Do your boobs hang low?
Do they wobble to and fro?
Can you tie 'em in a knot?
Can you tie 'em in a bow?
Can you throw 'em over your shoulder
Like a continental soldier?
Do your boobs hang low?"
I crossed my arms over my more than ample chest, turned around, and pushed against the door until the bus driver opened it. Then I ran off the bus and swore that from that day on, even if it was raining or snowing or bright purple UFOs were falling from the sky, I would never set foot on a school bus again.
So like I said, I'm walking home from school, down Farm Hill Road, with my army green knapsack on my back, just minding my own business, when this car goes by. Usually I don't notice cars--I mean, a car is a car is a car as far as I'm concerned, unlike Fred, who thinks cars are so important he has to trade in his Caddie every year for a more up-to-date model even though I can never tell the difference.
But this car is really, well, cute, which is a funny way to describe a car, but it is. It's a brown Volkswagen Bug, and you don't see too many of those driving around Suffolk County--also known as Suffocation County--let me tell you. The only other Volkswagen I've ever seen was an orange VW hippie van that belonged to Kevin, this friend of Mike's. Kevin came to pick Mike up one day, and Fred took one look out the window and started screaming, "No kid of mine is getting into a car made by those lousy Krauts," and then Mike screamed back, "Simmer, Freddie--boy, I wasn't even born yet," meaning World War II and everything, and then Fred screamed even louder, "Don't get fresh with me, Michael Kaplan. You'll get into that car over my dead body," which made me think, That could be arranged, Daddy-o, but not really, of course.
So anyway, Kevin drove off, and two seconds later Mike said he was going for a walk, and you'd have to be a total retard not to figure out that he was meeting Kevin on the corner. Anyway, the point is, since we're Jewish and my father grew up during the Holocaust, he is absolutely psycho about the Germans and World War II, he really is. He says Volkswagens are the perfect German car because the motor's in the back so if you get into a head-on collision, the SOBs can just haul your body out of the car and still use the engine. Fred is so anti-German he won't even let us eat sauerkraut on our hot dogs and I'm not even kidding.
So of course I notice the little brown Volkswagen. It looks like a cartoon almost, like a little Hershey's Kiss scooting around in the sun. It's funny when you think about it, but I had no idea then how that little car was going to change my life forever. I didn't think, for example, Before you know it, Andi Kaplan, you're going to be sitting in that little brown Bug doing things you never even imagined. Nope, the thought doesn't even cross my mind.
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