29 by Nancy Pennick
Published November 3rd 2015 by Allison-Hayes Books.
Allie Sanders thinks life in a small town can’t get any more dull and boring. She plans to escape after graduation. After a bad break-up, she wants to sail through junior year without distraction. Then the mysterious loner sits down in front of her in AP English. He’s the guy she noticed last year desperately trying to stay invisible. She wants to know his secrets.Suddenly her much older military brother, Doug, makes a rare appearance. He takes a special interest in her life. Suspicious of his motives Allie holds back, never really trusting him. Doug wants what she wants–the boy she has come to love. No way would she let that happen. She’d go against family and friends to protect him–and his secrets–even if it ends up breaking her heart. (Goodreads)
I studied the dark mass of hair in front of me and flashed back to the first time I saw him. Sophomore year. I wanted to call him tall, dark and handsome, but that was so cliché. Still, I couldn’t find better words to describe him. On my scale he was a ten. Tall, but not too tall, lean and muscular, dark hair and eyes containing hidden secrets.
Last year he became my secret crush. I had a boyfriend but this guy made my heart stop each time I saw him. The size of the high school kept kids from knowing everyone’s name. A person could get lost in the crowd. I discreetly asked around, but no one seemed to know the guy. I decided to name him Loner. When the yearbook came out at the end of the school year, I dove in looking for him. No sign of him, not on a single page.
A tap on my shoulder released me from my dream world. The kid next to me pointed to my best friend, two rows over. Ashley pantomimed some message, wildly moving her hands back and forth. I returned to reality and started laughing. I had no idea what she meant. Finally she resorted to pointing. I shot her a look that said, “Cut it out”. She noticed the Loner sitting in front of me. We had no secrets between us, and she knew about the crush. She supported my good fortune. Junior year could turn out better than last.
About the Author
Born and raised in Northeast Ohio, Nancy currently resides in Mentor, Ohio with her husband and their college-age son, plus a delightfully entertaining lovebird. She secretly wrote short stories as a child, typed them up and put them in a drawer. She’d give anything to see those stories one more time. Her writing is influenced by all the years of working with young people as a teacher and raising her own son. When not writing, Nancy loves to travel with her husband and enjoys a good cup of tea.
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