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Dead-End Job

Dead-End Job

4.4 10
by Vicki Grant

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Frances works the night shift at a local convenience store, dividing her time between restocking shelves and working on her art. Her routine is broken one night when Devin comes into the store. He claims to be the son of a famous local artist and offers her advice on her drawings. Although he seems to know way too much about her, Frances decides, against the advice


Frances works the night shift at a local convenience store, dividing her time between restocking shelves and working on her art. Her routine is broken one night when Devin comes into the store. He claims to be the son of a famous local artist and offers her advice on her drawings. Although he seems to know way too much about her, Frances decides, against the advice of her boyfriend, that he is odd but harmless. By the time she realizes the danger she is in, Devin is completely obsessed with her and convinced that if he can't have her, no one will. Frances will be forced to use all her strength to escape from Devin.

Editorial Reviews

SouthWestern Ohio Young Adult Materials Review Group
"[The] danger comes through clearly in the story and will keep the readers engaged until the end. A good, fast read."
“Though an easy-to-read novel, this will be a good read for any teen, and worth much discussion given that so many girls and women are at some point stalked. Be sure to give this to a young girl you care about.”
Monday Magazine
“Simply written, with an emphasis on plot and suspense, it makes for a fine non-television alternative.”
CM Magazine
“Suspenseful yet believable...The stalker scenario is realistically plotted and a good subject for a hi-lo book as this situation is one that may be (unfortunately) experienced by some young women...Recommended.”
Children's Literature
Part of the "Orca Surrounding" series, this text is designed to appeal to struggling readers by providing a high-interest story at a lower reading level. Although the novel is likely to be most appreciated by middle and high school readers, the reading level falls at 3.6. Frances, the novel's protagonist, works the graveyard shift at the local convenience store. She does not mind the slow pace, as she uses the time to practice her drawing in preparation for going away to art college the following year. Frances dates Leo, a high school hockey player and fix-it guy who fears losing her to someone more creative and academic. One night, while she tries without success to capture the image of a bag of cheese doodles on the shelf, she meets Devin, a young man who, from the start, strikes her as unusual in a disconcerting sort of way. Devin claims to be the abandoned son of a local celebrity back in town to confront his father. Frances soon finds herself running into Devin wherever she goes—at work, at school, even at the fabric store. She realizes something is amiss, but her attempts to tell Leo her concerns are thwarted when he finds a photo of Frances and Devin planted in Frances' locker. Frances finds herself alone and trapped in the back of the store one night, as Devin tries to woo her with a roasted chicken served on a cardboard box table. With her cunning and courage, she fights back and escapes, and the truth is revealed. Despite the plot-driven nature of the novel, Grant does a fine job of creating characters that are memorable and richly described in few words. Frances' musings about love, family, career, even life and death provide meaty issues to discuss with young readers.2005, Orca, Ages 12 to 17.
—Wendy Glenn, Ph.D.
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-Frances is hoping to save some money for art school. To do this she works the late shift at a convenience store on the edge of town. There, she meets loner/artist/new guy Devin. Unfortunately, he is severely disturbed and begins an imaginary romance with her that threatens her relationship with her boyfriend, her job, and her personal safety. This is an intense, plot-driven book that hits many familiar yet upsetting notes. The tension is meted out in a deliberate manner. The spare text makes it a strong choice for reluctant readers.-Amy Patrick, New York Public Library Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

Orca Book Publishers
Publication date:
Orca Soundings Series
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.25(w) x 7.00(h) x 0.30(d)
HL440L (what's this?)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

I ran blindly into the store, sliding in my greasy shoes, knocking cans onto the floor, ramming into shelves. I fumbled for the phone. I picked up the receiver. I could feel Devin right behind me.

I dialed nine, one..

His hand slammed the phone down.

"I hoped it wouldn't come to this," he said.

Meet the Author

Vicki Grant left her career in advertising and television to write her first novel, The Puppet Wrangler, in 2004. She enjoys writing for young adults, with a particular interest in reluctant readers. Vicki's books have gone on to win many awards, including the prestigious Arthur Ellis Award in 2006. She lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with her husband and three children. For more information, visit www.vickigrant.com.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Dead-End Job 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My opinion on the Dead-end Job is that it is a really good book. I would recommend poeple who like solving books read this one. Its probablly one of the best books that i've ever read. So if you are looking for a really good book to read, then read the Dead-end job!:)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was an easy read. It was enjoyable to read; I felt that there was just enough "scare & mystery" to keep you interested but not leave you wanting to know more of the details.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Unfortunitly I was not impressed with this book at all. I had expected it to be scary and filled with gripping suspence, but the terror of the novel is fueled only by Frances's stupidity. Any reader can tell whats going to happen to Frances from painfully obvious clues dropped throughout the book that the oblivious Frances doesn't pick up on. Her complete cluelessness grated on my nerves and I had to force myself to finish it just so that I could find out how exactly an idiot like Frances can escape a stalker.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book title kinda tellz the book frances could be dead soon. Its the end of her and devins life. N this all kinda happens at her job the convience store. Hahah great book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Man u dobe messed ut up
Heidi_G More than 1 year ago
As is typical of the Orca Soundings series, the book is written at a level accessible to most middle school students and is an excellent resource for ELL and struggling readers. Frances works the graveyard shift at a convenience store. One night a customer comes to the store and really turns on his charm. He says that he is the son of a famous wildlife artist in town, the product of the first of many marriages. Frances laughs off his advances and later tells her jealous boyfriend about the stranger. The reader realizes long before Frances does that she is being stalked. A good reminder that everyone is not who they say they are. Teens hear adults say this often when conversing about online predators but the same can be said for in-person communications.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
i loved this book it was one of my favorite book. i just couldnt put the book down for 1 second it had all this action .IF U WANT TO READ A BOOK PICK THIS ONE . ITS AWSOME
Guest More than 1 year ago
I would reccommend this book to anyone who is looking for a interesting book. This book was so wonderful i finished it in an hour and half. The book was so scary that I just wanted to know what happens to Frances. She dosnt know what is going to happen but me as a reader can tell something bad is going to happen and it does.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was terrifying at many points because you weren¿t sure what was going to happened to Frances. This book got my attention so much that I finished it the afternoon that I started to read it
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought that this book was fantastic. It was so scary, you are worrying about Frances the whole time because you know something bad is going to happen to her, but she can't see it. The plot was really good, it kept me turning the pages. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a good read!