Things seem to be going well in Landry Albright’s world—she’s getting invited to be on local talk shows to talk about her modeling career, her best friends have her back, and her boyfriend Vladi has becoming someone she can truly count on…and then everything changes. Suddenly it seems like most of the girls in school are into hanging out at a new teen dance club, while Landry just wants to spend her weekends playing video games and baking cupcakes at sleepovers. Then, Yasmin McCarty, the most popular girl in school, starts to come between Landry’s friendship with Ashanti. Things take a turn when Yasmin tells Vladi that Landry is interested in another boy. Can Landry get her relationships with Ashanti and Vladi back or will she be left out and left behind?
Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | iTunes
I wanted to call my friends and tell them about being on the talk show, but Mom said we had to be at the TV station super early — even before school started. She said I could text them, but I had to turn off my phone and go to bed.
“I’m waking you up at four a.m.,” she said. “You have to be there at five-thirty.”
“Can I just call Peyton and Ashanti? Please?”
“Fine, but you have five minutes and then that phone is mine and you’re in bed.”
I dialed Peyton, but her mom said she was in the shower. I told her mom about the show tomorrow and said my mom wouldn’t let me stay up any later to call Peyton back.
“How exciting! I will make sure Peyton knows, and I will be watching you tomorrow. Good luck, honey,” Mrs. Urich said.
I called Ashanti next and told her.
“Get out. Get. Out. No way. This is so exciting!”
“I’m so nervous. My stomach is already doing cartwheels. I can’t do one, but my stomach can. Seems unfair. What if I throw up before I go on? I did that right before I went on at the statewide Ingénue modeling competition in Detroit, and my mom had to give me a cough drop to cover up the smell.”
“I’m sure you’ll be fine, but… just in case, take a cough drop with you,” Ashanti said. “Good luck. You’ll be great and I’ll go set the DVR now.”
I hung up and sent a text to Vladi, India, Devon, Thalia, Tori, and Ericka, so no one would be mad and feel left out. Then I shut off my phone. Mom poked her head in the door to make sure I was in bed.
“Night, hon. Try to get some rest,” she said.
Easier said than done. I stared at my ceiling while thinking about all the things that could possibly go wrong tomorrow. Seeing as the show was on in the morning, I never got to watch it, so I had no idea what the set was like — did it have super high chairs and I’d struggle to get into them? And what if it had those higher stools that were kind of tippy and my rear overshot the seat and I fell off? Or what if the prep questions got lost and the interviewer asked me random things like my feelings on nuclear war or asked me about some foreign political leader who I had never heard of before, and I appeared stupid? Why did I say I’d do this? I tried to get comfortable and it felt like I had just dozed off when I felt my mom shaking my shoulder.
“Rise and shine, TV star,” she said.
Who is your favorite author?
F. Scott Fitzgerald is my favorite. I had to read The Great Gatsby twice in school, but I didn’t connect to it until I was an adult and then I fell in love with it.
How do you describe your writing style?
I always write with humor and my main characters wear their hearts on their sleeves. My two teen series both deal with self-esteem, growing up/coming of age, and first love.
Use no more than two sentences. Why should we read your book?
Landry in Like will take you back to your school days and make you laugh and feel for her as she grows up and navigates through school. There are funny moments, cringe worthy moments, and life lessons on how to deal with everything from frenemies, first loves, anxiety, and friendships.
If you could exchange lives with any of your characters for a day which character would you choose and why?
I would choose Hadley from Next Door to a Star (Star Series: Book One) because when she moves to a beach town, she has the chance to reinvent herself and start over and that idea is very intriguing to me. Plus, she lives in Grand Haven, Michigan—a beautiful beach town.
What books have most influenced your life?
I read a biography of a YA author, Paula Danziger, years ago and it made me realize that writing young adult fiction was what I was meant to do. It was always something I wanted to do, but I never realized that all those awkward and difficult moments I went through in my teen years might have been setting me up to help another teen in the same situation down the road. That biography shaped my vision of what I wanted to do in life.
Krysten Lindsay Hager is the author of the Landry’s True Colors Series, a clean reads young adult series and the new Star Series. Krysten writes about friendship, self-esteem, fitting in, middle school and high school, frenemies, modeling, crushes, values, and self-image in True Colors, Best Friends…Forever? And Landry in Like, as well as in, Next Door to a Star (Star Series). Her sequel to Next Door to a Star will be out March 22 2016.
Krysten is a book addict who has never met a bookstore she didn’t like. She’s worked as a journalist and writes YA, MG, humor essays, and adult fiction. She is originally from Michigan and has lived in Portugal, South Dakota, and currently resides in southwestern Ohio where you can find her reading and writing when she’s not catching up on her favorite shows. She received her master’s degree from the University of Michigan-Flint.
Author talk show interview: http://wdtn.com/2014/11/06/true-colors/