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The Squad Series, Book 1
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Bayport High’s Varsity cheer squad is made up of the hottest of the hot. But this A-list is dangerous in more ways than one. The Squad is actually a cover for the most highly trained group of...
Bayport High’s Varsity cheer squad is made up of the hottest of the hot. But this A-list is dangerous in more ways than one. The Squad is actually a cover for the most highly trained group of...
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Description-

  • Bayport High’s Varsity cheer squad is made up of the hottest of the hot. But this A-list is dangerous in more ways than one. The Squad is actually a cover for the most highly trained group of underage government operatives the United States has ever assembled. They have the perfect cover, because, beyond herkeys and highlights, no one expects anything from a cheerleader.

Excerpts-

  • From the book Chapter 1 Code Word: Pom-pom

    If you’d told me at the beginning of sophomore year that I was going to end up a government operative, I would have thought you were crazy, but if you’d told me I was destined to become a cheerleader, I would have had you committed, no questions asked. At that point in time, there were three things in life that I knew for certain: (1) I was a girl who’d never met a site she couldn’t hack or a code she couldn’t break, (2) I had a roundhouse that could put a grown man in the hospital, and (3) I would without question chop off my own hands before I’d come within five feet of a pom-pom.

    I liked to fly below the radar. I was the girl slouched in the back of your geometry class, not the one shaking my booty on the field. In fact, in the year and a half since we’d moved to Bayport, I’d spent more time in detention than at pep rallies and considered myself lucky; unless school spirit referred to a school-board-sanctioned wine, I had no intention of buying.

    And then, one day out of the blue, the note appeared in my locker.

    Toby Klein—

    You are cordially invited to an information session on the Bayport High Varsity Spirit Squad today at four in room 117. Go Lions (and Lionesses)!

    The year before, a bunch of angry feminist mothers had sued the district for having a male mascot, so now we were officially the Bayport Lion(esse)s. I kid you not. That’s just one of the many reasons I couldn’t fathom the idea of actually supporting the school in any way, shape, or form. That and the fact that I’d had to forcibly remove a football player’s hand from my brother’s arm three times in the last month. Emphasis on the word forcibly. If they touched Noah again, someone was going to lose an arm. Go Lions!

    I turned the note over in my hand. Wow, I thought, the God Squad must really be scratching bottom if they’re recruiting me. Maybe they just couldn’t stand it that there were actually a few sophomore and junior girls who weren’t willing to sell their souls for cheerleading immortality. There was a reason the varsity cheerleaders were collectively referred to as the God Squad, and it wasn’t because they were religious; it was because at Bayport High, they were gods: the ultimate social power. Most people did everything short of bowing down to worship them on a regular basis.

    I was not most people.

    Slamming my locker shut, I moved to throw the note away, but decided to save it for ammunition in case anyone in my carpool got too rowdy. As I moved to jam the invite into my pocket, light caught the letters, and for just a second, a few of them jumped out at me.

    “Stupid glitter pens,” I muttered, but automatically, my mind began cataloging the letters I’d noticed. I stuffed the note into my jeans, took four steps down the hallway, and then stopped. My brain does tricky things with letters and numbers: scrambles them and unscrambles them, analyzes their combinations, looks for patterns. When I was little, I loved palindromes and anagrams and any secret language more complicated than Pig Latin. Standing there in the hallway, my letter-savvy mind did its thing, and I pulled the invitation back out of my pocket.

    After a quick glance around the hall to make sure no one was watching, I held the small white card in the light again and, one by one, picked out the letters that appeared slightly more sparkly than their counterparts.

    Toby Klein—

    You are cordially invited to an information session on the Bayport High Varsity Spirit Squad today at four in room 117. Go Lions...

About the Author-

  • Jennifer Lynn Barnes wrote her first book when she was still a teenager, and she is currently hard at work on her next. Visit her online at www.jenniferlynnbarnes.com. She lives in Oklahoma.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    February 4, 2008
    Barnes launches a teen spy series with this campy and thoroughly addictive read. Sixteen-year-old Toby Klein, a tough-girl loner who'd rather sit in detention than pump up a game-day crowd, is appalled but intrigued when she receives an invitation to join the super-popular varsity cheerleading squad at Bayport High. Then she learns the squad is a cover for a top-secret group of teen girl government operatives whose mission is to protect America at all costs. Readers will easily suspend their disbelief to follow the exploits of these party girls whose picture-perfect appearances conceal their skills as brilliant profilers, linguists, weapons experts and computer hackers. Barnes (Platinum
    ) handily blends scenes of mundane high school life with espionage as the girls sport necklaces with built-in microphones and bulletproof push-up bras. This over-the-top tale never takes itself too seriously, much like Charlie's Angels
    (to which Toby occasionally dryly refers). Despite a prolonged lead-up to the girls' first mission and an annoying younger brother who pops up too often, this is a terrific guilty pleasure. Ages 12-up.

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    Random House Children's Books
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