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49. THINGS WE CAN’T SEE – Young Adult Contemporary

Monday, 3 November 2014  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Assorted_Uzi_Water_Guns_lgMentor Name: Stephanie Scott

Mentee Name: Dawn Norman


Category: Young Adult

Genre: Contemporary

Word Count: 63k


When 16-year-old Penny is the sole witness to a plane crash in the California mountains, her search for answers leads to another mystery: who caused the death of her washed-up Riot Girl neighbor? Clues point to Penny’s new boyfriend. Only uncovering his secrets means risking their lives from money-hungry crash scavengers.


She wears a satin shift with skinny lingerie straps. The gown is deep blue and riddled with darker spots where liquid has spilled and dried. Despite the heat she is wearing a cardigan, tissue-thin and drooping in pale peach.

“Where is he?” she cries, her hack bleach job following stiffly as she looks up the street.

“Who?” Till she beckoned, I was loitering on the hot sidewalk of this dull new neighborhood, pretending to mind my own business.

“The driver,” she says. “Fucking UPS. I’ve got deliveries, man.” She looks me up and down. “What’s your name?” she asks me. Then, “You’re not Hispanic. Are you? Korean?”

“Hawaiian,” I say. “Half. My name’s Penny. It means ‘pineapple’ in Hawaiian.”

I could make claim to a couple of ethnic backgrounds, but this is the one I like. It mostly matches how I look, the shallow curves and the extra-solid width. What I really am is a California girl.

Empty cardboard boxes are scattered by her door. “Did you just move in?” I ask. “I did, for the summer. My mom rents the house at the end of the street.” Two guitar cases lean on the wall in the entryway behind her. The sudden possibility of fun brightens the whole stretch of summer ahead. “Are you a musician?”

She huffs a short sigh, squints at this big dumb girl on her doorstep. “You don’t know who I am, is that it? I’m Sadie Rocks.”

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