Sneaking Around

Betsy Haynes, Author
Betsy Haynes, Author Random House Books for Young Readers $3.99 (0p) ISBN 978-0-679-86022-8
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Fluffy though it is, the first installment of the proposed Boy Talk series is built upon a concept that is hard to resist-the fascination of listening in on people's confidences. Inspired by the dubious thrill of a one-time call to a 900 number offering romantic advice, best friends Joni, Crystal and Su-Su anonymously found Boy Talk, a phone-in advice service for their junior high classmates. This none-too-logical scheme involves the use of Crystal's father's answering machine as well as his unlisted(!) business number. The friends' very first call just happens to be from a girl whom Joni's beloved boyfriend Beau has just asked out. This revelation sends Joni and Beau's relationship into a tumult of predictable misunderstandings, capped by an equally predictable and gushingly recounted reconciliation. In a particularly hokey subplot, head cheerleader April indignantly vows to uncover the identities of the girls behind Boy Talk. At its best, this book is a giddy quasi-fantasy; at its worst, it encourages high jinks that are irresponsible (and possibly illegal). Ages 8-12. (May)
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