We have Keris Stainton, author of the awesome Emma Hearts LA on the blog today! Want to know more about this charming companion novel to Jessie Hearts New York? Read on! It's an equally romantic YA contemporary novel which I'm sure a lot of you will love!
In Emma Hearts LA, we meet a character named "Alex Hall", a smokin' hot 19 year old celebrity who seems to take a fancy on Emma. Alex is kind and fun, but did Keris intended for his character to be like that? Check the deleted scene below, where Alex was introduced. It was COMPLETELY DIFFERENT from what was in the finished copy!
We've arranged to meet Mum at a restaurant called The Terrace, which is about five minutes along Ocean Front Walk and just around the corner from the beach. I actually smell it before I see it and it smells amazing: Chinese food, I think. My stomach rumbles in anticipation. The front of the restaurant is on a side street and there's a stretch limo parked right outside.
“Will that be someone famous?!” Bex asks me.
She's been in a dreamworld all afternoon and then, as soon as she realised it was morning back at home, started texting her friends and Skypeing with Dad.
“No idea," I tell her. "I'd hope the really famous people were a bit more subtle."
We’re shown to a table in the outside part of the restaurant. Like the Sidewalk Café, it’s sort of under an enclosed awning so you’re still inside the restaurant, but outside at the same time. It’s another great spot for people-watching and there are plenty of people to watch. A waiter takes our drinks order and while we’re waiting for him to bring it, we see two little blond boys wearing wetsuits and carrying small surfboards – they don’t look older than 10, but they do look incredibly confident with their sea-tousled hair and boards under their arms. A woman goes past on a skateboard. She’s holding the lead of a Great Dane and letting the dog pull her along. Lots of people are barefoot, walking back up from the beach, and one of them - a woman who seems to be dancing to no music - comes over and asks if either of us can spare a quarter.
“Yes, I’ve got one,” I tell her, rooting in my skirt pocket. I hand her a quarter.
“Do you have any more?” she asks, and it’s only then that I realise she’s begging and not that she needs change for a phone or a meter or something. I don’t actually have any more change, but she thanks me and heads off cheerfully towards the next restaurant.
Bex goes to the loo and I check the time – it’s 6pm here, so I think it’s about 3 in New York, so I text Jessie to tell her where I am and ask what she’s doing. I get a reply back straight away: ‘At the beach! Finn day off. He says hi.’
Jessie’s boyfriend Finn is working at her dad’s architect practice for the summer and Jessie’s been working with her mum running theatre classes for children. When we were in New York last year, things were pretty strained between Jessie and her mum, but things seem to be going great now, even though Jessie’s mum’s engaged to Ben, who is not only about half her age, but Jessie thought he was interested in her not her mum. Last summer had a bit more drama than this one has so far.
When Bex comes back from the loo, she’s chewing her lip so I ask what’s wrong. She leans right across the table and whispers, “I got my period.”
“It wasn’t due?” I ask her.
She shrugs. “I never know when it’s due.”
I have to admit I’m the same. I always mean to make a note of it, but never remember. “Have you got anything?”
She shakes her head.
“Okay,” I tell her. “There’s a shop just there.” I gesture over my shoulder. “You wait here and I’ll go and get some tampons. If the waiter comes back, I’ll have the chicken marsala.”
The shop is just across a side road so it only takes me a second to get there. It takes me a lot longer to find the tampons though – I eventually spot them behind the counter, but when I ask the guy to get them for me, he says I can get them myself. Why keep them behind the counter then? I pay for them and head back towards the restaurant. As I’m waiting to cross the road back, I see a small crowd down the side street. I peer at it and realise it’s about twenty girls, about my age, most of them wearing prom dresses and heels. Some of them even have tiaras on. At first I think they're fighting - they seem to be shoving each other and I can hear some squealing, but then I realise there’s a man in the middle of the crowd. What the hell? He holds his hands up in front of him – he looks like he’s asking them to back off. I take a few steps down towards them and he looks over and his eyes meet mine. I realise a few things at the same time. He’s very stressed. He wants the girls to back off. He’s asking me to help him. And he’s Alex Hall. The actor.
Emma Hearts LA
June 07, 2012
Emma's not sure that LA's for her, but when she accompanies her sister Jane to an audition, a chance meeting with a teen TV star starts to change her new sunshine lifestyle for the better... But what about Oscar, so far her only friend in LA, who's turning out NOT to be the idiot she thought he was?
Soon Emma begins to find herself torn between two boys and reconsidering her entire future.
Maybe LA's not that bad after all.
The awesome people over at Hachette UK is offering a finished copy of Emma Hearts LA to 1 lucky winner!
Ends June 16
Must be 13 years old to enter
Comments will not earn you extra entries, but I'd love it if you say hi!
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