Sixteen-year-old painter Abby Wheeler has blended herself into the background so well that she’s practically invisible. Even her dream guy, Cooper Deal, barely knows she exists. He’s the soccer team captain with the popularity status to match. Art freaks need not apply. Besides, Cooper’s girlfriend, the perfect Miss Teenage Dream, has already dug her claws in him and no amount of brute force will tear that she-monster away.
When Abby accidentally slips about her secret infatuation in front of master manipulator Ian Koch, she’s sure her future involves being Ian’s blackmailed slave. Craptastic. But he makes an enticing proposal instead: he’ll keep his trap shut about Abby’s crush if she joins forces with him to end Cooper’s relationship. Operation Breakup. Abby loves Cooper, Ian loves Cooper’s girlfriend, throw a wedge between the supercouple, and voilà! The perfect opportunity for Abby to change the course of her life.
But making a deal with the devil comes with a price. As Ian’s demands grow increasingly risky, Abby’s enemy list piles high and Cooper’s girlfriend is at the top. Soon Abby is knee-deep in blackmail, bribes and threats of exposure. The only thing keeping her grounded is the growing spark between her and Cooper Deal—a spark she hopes is real. But at the rate she’s going, Cooper may not know the real Abby when Operation Breakup’s mission is complete. She’s not even sure she’ll know herself.
First 150 words:
No less than five minutes into Global Studies and the first stab of a migraine pierced my left eyeball. It started when I shoved my hand into a brown bag and pulled out a slip of paper with Ian Koch’s name scrawled on it.
“First partnership: Ian Koch and Abby Wheeler!” Mr. Rausch said with a flourish and handed the paper bag to his next victim.
You could hear a pin drop. The entire class looked up like Mr. Rausch had said, “Ian Koch and Osama bin Laden!” They stared at Ian with these big, concerned eyes, like he was going to the gallows or something.
Really? Was I that bad of a partner? I might not have been valedictorian material, but I wasn’t warming the bench in the principal’s office, either.
Ian lifted one hand, looking like it pained him to wave me over.
Great. Front row. As if Global History wasn’t excruciatingly bad enough.