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Cassie thinks she may have met the boy of her dreams . . . just a few weeks before he becomes the dream guy of every girl in America.
High school senior Cassie Walters has attended more high schools than she can count as she’s hopped all over the country with her mother since freshman year. She’s passed through so many classrooms and hallways that she doesn’t even bother making friends anymore because she considers it a waste of time. But everything changes in Temecula, California when Mr. Tinker, a teacher Cassie can’t help but like, convinces her to attend a drama club meeting. Despite her intention to avoid getting involved in school activities, Cassie is intrigued by the possibility of playing guitar in the high school production of Grease. She’s also intrigued by a strange but cute senior guy named Elliott who insists on personally arranging the show’s music.
Elliott’s unlike anyone Cassie’s ever met before. Just like her, he’s perfectly comfortable being an outsider among his classmates. She’s flattered when he seems to take an interest in befriending her. He has an incredible singing voice and can play guitar like a rock star, and Cassie finds herself becoming a little fascinated by him despite his unconventional social skills.
Elliott confides in Cassie that he wants to audition for the competitive television show, Center Stage! She suspects he just might be a talented enough musician to be chosen as a contestant. When Elliott’s invited by the show’s producers to audition for the season premiere in Hollywood, he begs Cassie to accompany him. With mixed emotions, she cuts classes and rudely breaks plans to attend a rock concert with a new friend to instead be present for Elliott’s big moment. Cassie believes in Elliott’s talent and is thrilled for him, but the thought of him abandoning her in Temecula if he’s cast as one of the season’s contestants terrifies her. She’s started to believe that their friendship is the only reliable thing in her life, and she’s desperate not to lose it.
This novella prequel to Duffy’s latest full-length novel, Center Stage! tells a touching tale about a teen learning to open her heart and accept love.