Asking for Trouble (London Confidential Series #1)

Asking for Trouble (London Confidential Series #1)

4.7 49
by Sandra Byrd

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When her family moves to London, 15-year-old Savvy Smith has to make her way in a new school and a new country. She just knows the school newspaper is the right place for her, but she doesn’t have the required experience, and the cute editor-in-chief is not looking to train anyone. She has to come up with a way to prove herself and nab the one available

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When her family moves to London, 15-year-old Savvy Smith has to make her way in a new school and a new country. She just knows the school newspaper is the right place for her, but she doesn’t have the required experience, and the cute editor-in-chief is not looking to train anyone. She has to come up with a way to prove herself and nab the one available position on the newspaper staff at Wexburg Academy. London Confidential is a new series where British fashion, friendships, and guys collide, and where an all-American girl learns to love life and live out her faith.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Minimal development of supporting characters and a lack of narrative tension mar Byrd’s (the Friends for a Season series) effort to chronicle a teenage girl’s maturation in her Christian faith. Fifteen-year-old Savvy—uprooted from friends, school, and church when her close-knit family moves from Seattle to London—struggles to adapt to British lingo and customs. Eager to establish a niche for herself, Savvy exaggerates her journalistic experience when applying for a coveted spot on the school newspaper. Throughout, Savvy’s moral conflicts resolve themselves quickly, as when she confesses her inexperience during her interview with no dire consequences. Family members provide unconditional love and support: the only familial tension revolves around Savvy’s sister’s dog and crusty “Aunt” Maude (their landlord), who, unsurprisingly, turns out to be a sweetheart. The family’s desire for a new church home is fulfilled on Christmas Eve. The story’s most poignant moments coincide with Savvy’s growing empathy with adults, as when she recognizes that her mother’s struggles to find friends mirror her own. The second book in the London Confidential series, Through Thick and Thin, is available simultaneously. Ages 8-12. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Lauri Berkenkamp
Fifteen-year-old Savannah has recently moved from Seattle to London, and is struggling to fit into a new city, school, and culture. She feels abandoned by her old friends back in Seattle and can't quite break into the tight circles of friendship at her new school. She also can't find a church or church group where she fits in, which was a hugely important aspect of her family's life back in the United States. Savvy gamely attempts to join various clubs and activities, but discovers her best chance at school happiness arises when the school newspaper needs a new reporter. Savvy tells a lie of omission and wins the position, but her conscience gets the best of her and she confesses to the dreamy but distant editor, Jack, the truth. The result: instead of becoming the paper's newest reporter, Savvy is offered the job of delivering the papers each week. When Savvy comes up with an innovative idea to help flagging circulation by including a new advice columns for teens, Jack allows her to write a few anonymous columns to test the idea. Savvy looks to the Bible for inspiration and her column is a hit. At the end of the novel, Savvy is just beginning to feel comfortable with herself and her new life, but her future looks promising. This novel focuses heavily on Savvy's quest to find where she fits in a new school, using the New Testament as a backdrop for many of Savvy's decisions. Each advice column Savvy writes is based on a Bible passage, and throughout the novel Savvy and her family pray for guidance in their new home. While the evangelical Christian slant of the book may well put off any reader who doesn't share those beliefs, Savvy is a very appealing character and younger teens will likely identify with her struggle to find a place she belongs. Reviewer: Lauri Berkenkamp

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Product Details

Tyndale House Publishers
Publication date:
London Confidential , #1
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Sales rank:
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

Asking for Trouble

By Sandra Byrd

Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2010 Sandra Byrd
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4143-2597-2

Chapter One

I hung back at the doorway to the cafeteria of my new supercool British school, Wexburg Academy. Most of the lunch tables were already packed, and the room was buzzing with chatter. The populars, whom I'd secretly nicknamed the Aristocats, commanded an entire table right in the center of the room. Their good looks and posh accents made up the sun around which all other tables orbited. The normal kids were in the second circle, arranged by friends or clubs or activities. The drama table was on the outer edge of the room, and so were the geeks, the nerds, and the punk wannabes-way out there like Neptune, but still planets. Most everyone had a group. I didn't.

Okay, so there was one table with lots of room. The leftovers table. It might as well have been the dark side of the moon.

No way.

I skipped lunch-again-and headed to the library. One of the computers was available and I logged on, desperately hoping for an e-mail from Seattle.

There was an e-mail from my grandmother reminding me to floss because British dentists only cleaned adult teeth.

Spam from Teen Vogue.

An invitation to join the Prince Harry fan club-I opened it and gave it a quick scan. I'd consider it more later.

And ... one from Jen!

I clicked open the e-mail from my best friend at home-well, it had been my home till a couple of months ago-hoping for a lunch full of juicy news served alongside tasty comments about how she missed me and was planning stuff for my next visit home. I craved something that would take me the whole lunch period to read and respond to and remind me that I did have a place somewhere in this universe.

From: Jen To: Savannah Hey, Fortune Cookie, so how's it going? Met the Queen yet? LOL. Sorry I haven't written too much. It's been so busy. Samantha took the position you'd been promised on the newspaper staff. She's brand new, but then again you would have been too. It seemed strange without you at first, but I think she'll do okay-maybe even better than okay. And hey, life has changed for everyone, right? Things are crazy busy at school, home, and church. We hang out a lot more now that a bunch of us are driving. Will write again in a few weeks. Miss you! Jen

A few weeks! My lungs filled with air, and I let it out slowly, deflating like a balloon with a slow leak. I poised my hands over the keyboard to write a response but just ... couldn't. What would I say? It had already been weeks since we'd last e-mailed. Most of my friends texted instead of e-mailing anyway, but texting across the Atlantic Ocean cost way too much. And the truth was ...

I'd moved, and they'd moved on.

I logged off the computer and sat there for a minute, blinking back tears. Jen hadn't meant to forget me. I was simply out of her orbit now.

I pretended to read Sugar magazine online, but mostly I was staring at the clock, passing the time till I could respectably head to my next class.

Five minutes before class I swung my book bag onto my shoulder and headed down the hall. Someone was stapling flyers to the wall. "Hi, Hazelle."

"Hullo, Savannah." She breezed by me, stapling another pink flyer farther down the wall. We had math class together-oh yeah, maths, as the Brits called it-first period. I'd tried to make friends with her; I'd even asked her if she'd like to sit together in lunch, but she'd crisply informed me that she sat at the table with the other members of the newspaper staff.

She didn't bother with small talk now either, but went on stapling down the hall. I glanced at one of the flyers, and one sentence caught my eye right away: Looking for one experienced journalist to join the newspaper staff.

I yanked the flyer off the wall and jammed it into my bag. I was experienced. Wasn't I?

A nub of doubt rose inside me-the kind that popped up, unwelcome, anytime I tried to rationalize something that wasn't exactly true or right.

This time I swallowed it back. I thought back to Jen's e-mail that kind of felt like a polite dismissal. I lived in London now.

It was time to take matters into my own hands.


Excerpted from Asking for Trouble by Sandra Byrd Copyright © 2010 by Sandra Byrd. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Asking for Trouble (London Confidential Series #1) 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 49 reviews.
Bluerosesheart More than 1 year ago
In my teen years I read lots of Sweet Valley High books. I don't think there's anything wrong with them, but I do wish I had known of books like these! I would have gotten so much more out of them, along with just having fun reading. I would have been more encouraged to read of other teen girls praying and studying their Bible. I did have encouragement in other ways, but my reading material could have been better. Asking for Trouble is definitely geared towards teen/tween readers, but I had fun reading it, too. I don't like when authors "dumb down" their writing for young adult books. I guess I've gotten to the age where I just can't tolerate those books. Sandra does such a wonderful job of capturing the voice of a teenager without without making me feel too old! ;) Savvy is such a lovable character! She doesn't always do the right thing immediately, but she does come through. And, I love that Sandra wrote her parents likable, too. So many times in teen books, parents just aren't what they should be. If I had a teen/tween daughter, I wouldn't hesitate to buy these books for her! Asking for Trouble was a wonderfully sweet, encouraging book, and it's my favorite Christian Teen book I've read so far!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! I couldn't put it down. I think tween/teen girls wilk relate to this alot.
ABookLoverForever More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. It was a cute story with an interesting plot and characters. Savvy and her family move from Seattle to a small town near London, England. It is not always easy to make friends and fit in when you are far from home. There were lots of cute details to make the book authentic. This is a perfect book for Christian girls age 12 and up. Savvy is fifteen but there is nothing objectionable in the book. I ordered the next book in the series almost immediately after reading this one. I am 26 and can't wait to read it. Highly Recommended. :) Review copy provided by publisher.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Asking For Trouble is a great teen read. I really enjoyed reading this book. It's about a fifteen year old girl who just moved to London. It tells about all her experiences there and how she joined the school newspaper. A great read with a great plot. I just love this book and can't wait to read the rest of the series!
Louisa_May More than 1 year ago
I am always wary when reviewing Christian teenage fiction--you just never know what you might find. I've seen teenage fiction where the main characters were rebellious and boy crazy and that's not something I want to encourage in my daughters. It's hard enough being a teenager without being encouraged to chase boys and argue with your parents in Christian books. But the main character of this book, Savvy (Savannah) is not only cool--she's a good Christian kid whose not too perfect but does her best, seeks God's wisdom, and finds how He answers her prayers for that very thing. She's an aspiring journalist seeking a role as her new English school's advice column writer. She reads the bible and prayers that God will help her give good, sound advice to her classmates. It's rewarding to see this great example of a teenager who's seeking God, staying true to him, and super cool. The plot moved quickly, the characters were likeable, and the writing was flawless. I gave the book only 4 stars because the recommended audience is 9-12 year olds. Savvy deals with life as a 15 year old, high school girl. I don't feel that 9-12 year olds should be hanging out with high schoolers in real life, so naturally don't think they should be seeking them out in books, either. I do highly recommend this book and the rest of the series to older girls, but no younger than 14.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book my friend lended it to me on my nook HD I think savvy likes the newspaper boss, i forgot his name.Umm im larning abou shakesphere in PC , and this book gives you some advice
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A really funny book with a talented American main charactor (Savvy) and her journey with God as she settles in Britain. A must read!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed Asking For Trouble. My teen daughter read it and then had me read it. I expected a typical shallow teen read with an underdeveloped plot and a very shallow focus. What a pleasant surprise!! The characters were very believable, and there is a great mix of light humour with serious issues the main character deals with. This book is clean, fun, with some good wisdom thrown in in a very natural way. Both my daughter and I loved it enough to buy the rest of the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was so sad when this book was over! It was that good
JDyan More than 1 year ago
I realized Asking For Trouble was a book for children and even though I read it with my adult eyes I remembered that I was once a 15 year old girl. This is a very short read that brought back many memories from my high school days. I did enjoy it even though it wasn't the most interesting book I've ever read. I would still recommend it for young girls. Sandra did an excellent job of incorporating Savvy's faith into the story and I have to admit while I was reading Asking For Trouble I found myself admiring Savvy for that reason. When I was 15 I know that sitting in church about one Sunday a month was the only time God was on my mind other than when I needed someone to blame when things didn't go right in my life. With many cute and quirky moments thrown in Sandra Byrd's Asking For Trouble was a great start to the London Confidential series and will definitely be enjoyable for young people. I know I will be keeping up with the series to find out what becomes of Savannah Smith..... and Bob's your uncle!Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.
ButterflyBlessingsBlog More than 1 year ago
I have a thing for accents. :o) This was a fun book that was well written and was an easy read. I wouldn't hesitate to suggest it for a friend with a young girl. The main character was believable and the story was *redeeming* without being preachy. I liked that she learned her lessons through her own strength of character and choices rather than them being forced on her or taught to her by someone else.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Seems good like her other books but she misspelled Aristocrats on page 8.
rlighthouse More than 1 year ago
Great Book for Teens! Savvy moved with her family from America to London.  She attempts to fit in but is having problems finding where.  She finally tries the school newspaper but doesn't have the right training and no one wants to take the time for her so she delivers the newspapers instead.  Better than nothing and she gets her foot in the door. She finally convinces the editor to let her write an advice column but the questions start to hit too close to home.  Will Savvy lose everything that she has worked so hard for?  This is an excellent series for teen girls-something refreshingly positive and clean.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a very good christain book that really shows the life of a teen. It was awesome!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really liked it. Because it had my sorta taste in reading. I can't wait for another one like it Thanks to my bffl Ail i love this book thanks auther
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a fast highly enjoyable read. I wish this book had been around when I was in high school. Usually, especially as of late, I rate a book five stars if it has been well written, a good plot and three dimensional characters. This book has met that criteria and a brought a bit more. It has been a long time since I read a book, let alone a young adult book, that left me feeling anything but angst. I felt good after i read this book. I felt like I was actually a better person for reading it. I will definitely read more from Byrd. In my opinion, this book is a must.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Iluv this book i got it for free on my nook hd
nannaof2007 More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Now almost all these reviews i see are by adults, some say their kids liked it, some say they think teens will like it. We here we go i am a teen, 14 years of age and i was kinda like, ok it looks like a good book. I read the book, almost all of it was dreaduffly boring, hard to keep reading. The book sends off good messages but i know this isint good to say but the things that make books interesting to most teens is full drama of action, but this book was lacking really good drama or action. It was all blan and non entertaining Now i like getting the bad stuff out first,this book was paistakingly boring mostly, but very well written in some ways a young teen does think. And i like the detail of her learning the ways of the brits, thats what kept me readin Thanks for readin! Awsomeness oxox :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I highly recomend this book it was a great way to show how god works in everyones life