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NOW AVAILABLE from Delacorte Press / Random House Books:


Spelling bees, scandal, and a whole lot of spitting. Based on Watergate!

Read reviews

Read an excerpt

Blog entries related to the book.

AND - "If Y'all Wanna Join a Gang, Join the Good Times Gang!" - an mp3 of one of the songs sung at the pre-bee assembly!

CHARACTERS / SUSPECTS:
Harlan Sturr, a class clown whose hobby is planning his own funeral. He doesn't care about winning the bee, but has a special reason to make the top five.
Jennifer Van den Berg, an overscheduled student who dreams of running away and becoming a hippie. She doesn't WANT to be in the bee at all, but her father will do anything to make sure she wins - up to and including cheating. And he's ready to send her to military school if she loses.
Mutual Scrivener a previously home-school student enrolled at Gordon Liddy Community School only to enter the bee and begin his journey to becoming a spelling champion. However, he finds other things to distract him - like heavy metal.
Jason "Skeleton" Keyes - Mutual's mentor in the ways of metal, Jason is the class criminal. His hobbies include headbanging and "freaking old ladies out."
Marianne Cleaver is as overscheduled as Jennifer, but LIKES it. Marianne has read one too many SAT skills books and is starting to lose her mind; as a result, she tends to speak in multiple choice questions. Rumored to be a robot.
Jake "Chow" Wells makes a pretty good living as the local "kid who will eat anything for a dollar." Possibly the only kid in the history of the school who actually wants to win because of the prize - a $75 gift certificate at Hedekker's Appliance Store.
Chrissie Woodward - the school's unofficial detective, Chrissie has been working for the school since kindergarten. But when she starts to uncover what's REALLY going on behind the scenes of the bee, she realizes she's been working for the wrong side all along and vows to bring Principal Floren DOWN.



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