By Ellen Hopkins
Raised in a spiritual -- but abusive -- relatives, Pattyn Von Stratten starts off asking questions -- approximately God, a woman's position, intercourse, love. She reviews the 1st stirrings of ardour, but if her father catches her in a compromising place, occasions spiral uncontrolled. Pattyn is shipped to reside with an aunt within the wilds of Nevada to discover salvation and redemption. What she reveals as a substitute is love and attractiveness -- until eventually she realizes that her outdated demons won't enable her cross.
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The expression brought another flash of heat into Tally’s cheeks. The boy was smirking at her, amused, like Tally was average and anyone’s to think about-like she wasn’t special. The uglifying smart plastic on her face began to burn. This stupid boy thought Tally was here for his entertainment. He needed to find out otherwise. Tally decided on a new plan. She stabbed a button on her crash bracelet. Its signal spread through the smart plastic on her face and hands at the speed of sound, the clever molecules unhooking from each other, her ugly mask exploding in a puff of dust to reveal the cruel beauty underneath.
But she’d counted five Smokies in all. If three had their bows drawn, where were the other two? Then, even softer than Shay’s calm and steady breathing, her ears caught the sound of footsteps moving through the pine needles. But they were too careful, too quiet for a city-born random. Only someone who’d grown up in the wild could move that softly. David. Tally stood slowly, sliding her back up the tree trunk, eyes opening. The footsteps grew closer, coming up on her right. She eased herself sideways, keeping the trees’ bulk between herself and the sound.
All of Tally’s senses were on fire, but her mind seemed to stand apart from them, observing their sensations without being overwhelmed. She was non-random, above average… almost beyond human. And she had been made to save the world. Tally stopped counting and let out a slow, calm breath, and bit by bit, her shivering faded away. The icy water had lost its power. She pulled herself back onto Ho’s board, grasping its edges with bone-pale knuckles. It took three tries to snap her numbed fingers loud enough, but finally the hoverboard began to rise into the dark sky, climbing as high as the cool and silent magnetic lifters would take it.