Skinny-Dipping (Au Pairs Series #2) by Melissa de la Cruz, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Skinny-Dipping (Au Pairs Series #2)
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Skinny-Dipping (Au Pairs Series #2)

4.5 46
by Melissa de la Cruz

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Mara, Eliza, and Jacqui are back in the Hamptons for another summer of beaches, boys, and—oh, yeah—babysitting in this second book in the Beach Lane series.

Back in the Hamptons for another summer, Mara, Eliza and Jacqui have to deal with the fallout of how they spent their winters.

Mara dumped Ryan, but now wants him back. Unfortunately, he


Mara, Eliza, and Jacqui are back in the Hamptons for another summer of beaches, boys, and—oh, yeah—babysitting in this second book in the Beach Lane series.

Back in the Hamptons for another summer, Mara, Eliza and Jacqui have to deal with the fallout of how they spent their winters.

Mara dumped Ryan, but now wants him back. Unfortunately, he may have moved on. To Eliza.

Eliza is worried about Mara finding out about her recent fling—but also about what Jeremy will think.

And Jacqui is eyeing the Perrys’ new au pair, Philippe. Too bad she’s sworn off boys…

If the girls want to keep their jobs, they have to get their love lives under control—or they’ll be on the first bus out of the Hamptons.

The Beach Lane series is created by Alloy Entertainment, producer of bestselling teen and middle grade series including The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Gossip Girl, The Vampire Diaries, and Pretty Little Liars.

Originally published as part of the Au Pairs series.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
A gorgeous French male au pair comes on the scene to complicate the friendship between Mara, Eliza and Jacqui, turning up the heat in the Hamptons in this second adventure in the Au Pairs series. Ages 14-up. (June) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-Eliza, Mara, and Jacqui return for a second season of high fashion, fabulous parties, unlimited alcohol, sex, and celebrities in New York's exclusive Hamptons. Last summer, as au pairs for the wealthy Perry family, the girls partied their way through the season. Now Mara and Jacqui have returned to care for the Perry children while Eliza has chosen to work at the ultra-hip nightclub, The Seventh Circle. Sound perfect? Not quite. Eliza has broken up with the hunky gardener from last year and has hooked up with Ryan Perry, Mara's ex-boyfriend. After all, Mara did break up with him. The catch is that, unbeknownst to Eliza, Mara wants him back. Jacqui, the beautiful Brazilian, has recently sworn off men-until she meets Eliza's replacement, the stunning Philippe. Oh, yeah, it may be worth mentioning that Mrs. Perry also has her eye on him. The story is ultimately about the fleeting nature of popularity and how easy it is to get caught up in the game. There is plenty of underage drinking, some mild drug use, and nonexplicit sex. One thing is for sure, this book will be in high demand. Readers of The Au Pairs (S & S, 2004) will be dying to know what happens to the girls. Teens unfamiliar with these characters will be attracted by the eye-catching cover showing shapely tanned legs and discarded bikinis on a beach. Give this to fans of Cecily von Ziegesar's "Gossip Girl" books and Zoey Dean's "The A-List" series (both Little, Brown).-Michele Capozzella, Chappaqua Public Library, NY Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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"Hot Beach Reading!"


Product Details

Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Publication date:
Au Pairs Series, #2
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range:
14 Years

Read an Excerpt


  • IT DIDN’T LOOK LIKE MUCH, BUT THEN THAT WAS PROBABLY because it was three o’clock in the afternoon, and Seventh Circle, the newest, soon-to-be-hottest club in the Hamptons, wouldn’t get going until after midnight. A potato barn in its former life, Seventh Circle was a large, brown-shingled, rambling wood building set back in the Southampton woods. Only a discreet sign off the highway (seven circles posted to a tree, natch) let the initiated know they had arrived at their destination.

    Eliza Thompson steered her black Jetta into the parking lot, feeling at once pleased and apprehensive. She examined her makeup in the rearview mirror, applied a thick layer of lip gloss, stuck two fingers inside her mouth, and pulled them out slowly, just like Allure suggested, in order to avoid a grandmotheresque lipstick-on-teeth situation.

    She checked for detritus of Chanel Glossimer. Nothing. Perfect.

    Eliza grabbed her bag—the season’s covetable metallic leather Balenciaga motorcycle clutch. Eliza had bought it in Palm Beach, during the week she’d spent as a vacation au pair for the Perrys last winter. Inside was a rolled-up resume that listed her sparkling attributes: a Spence education (up until her parents’ bankruptcy last year and their subsequent move to Buffalo, that is), an internship at Jane (which had entailed fetching nonfat soy lattes and alphabetizing glitter nail polish), and a reference from her longtime friend and Manhattan boy-about-town, Kit Ashleigh.

    Life was almost great again for Eliza. Okay, sure, the Thompsons were still living in Buffalo—a far, far cry from the posh life they’d left behind in New York City—but they had moved from a sordid little rental to a proper three-bedroom condominium in the only luxury high-rise in the city. With a little help from some old friends and loyal clients, her dad was slowly getting back on his feet, and there was money for such things as thousand-dollar handbags again. (Well, there was credit at least.) With her grades and SAT scores (top 99th percentile—Eliza was no dummy), there was a good chance she would be able to wing financial aid and get into Princeton after all. This summer her parents were even renting a little Cape Cod in Westhampton. It had the smallest pool Eliza had ever seen—it was practically a bathtub!—but still, it was a house, it was theirs (for the summer), and it was in the Hamptons.

    The only thing keeping Eliza off balance was the Big Palm Beach Secret from last winter. Something had happened while she was there that she’d rather forget, but news traveled fast in the Hamptons and Eliza knew she’d have to come clean soon enough. She brushed aside the thought for now—it was time to focus on the task at hand: getting a job in the hottest new club in the Hamptons and recapturing her title as the coolest girl in town.

    Before Buffalo and bankruptcy, Eliza had been famous for being the prettiest, most popular girl on the New York private school circuit. Sugar Perry, who now ruled in her stead, had been a mere wannabe when Eliza was on the scene. Eliza was the one who set the trends (white-blond highlights), knew about all the best parties (Tuesdays at Butter), and dated the hottest guys (polo-playing Charlie Borshok, who was now Sugar’s boyfriend as well). Being “outed” as a poor au pair last summer had changed all that, but this was a new year, a new summer, and a new Eliza—who just happened to look a lot like the old Eliza, the girl everyone wanted to know and all the other girls wanted to be.

    It was still drizzling, the end of a typical early June East End rainstorm, as Eliza slid quickly out of her Jetta, which she’d begged her parents to lease her for the summer, and checked her cell phone for any missed calls from Jeremy. Last summer, Eliza had fallen in love with Jeremy Stone, the Perrys’ hunky nineteen-year-old gardener, but they’d broken up over the winter since they lived so far away from each other. Now that summer was here, Eliza was dying to see him again. She wasn’t exactly sure where Jeremy would fit in with her plans for getting back on top of the social scene, since he wasn’t rich or famous (although he was very, very cute), but she did know her plans included him, and she hoped that would be good enough. With no missed calls or new texts, Eliza stuffed her phone back in her clutch and headed toward the club.

    The door was hanging open, so she let herself inside. Seventh Circle was supposed to be the place to be this summer, but here it was, a week after Memorial Day, and it hadn’t even opened yet. There was a thick layer of fresh sawdust on the floor, and a full construction crew was barking orders at one another. The barn had been retrofitted to accommodate a U-shaped zinc bar, and against the back wall stood a built-in glass liquor cabinet almost twenty-five feet high. The guys looked up when they spied Eliza. Several whistled at the sight of her tanned legs underneath her pink smocked Juicy tube dress. It was the kind of dress that made everyone else who wore it look fat or pregnant, but on Eliza it looked cute and sexy.

    “Hi, I’m here to see the owners—Alan or Kartik?” Eliza said, pulling her long blond hair into a high ponytail.

    One of the hard hats grunted and pointed a finger toward the back of the club. Eliza stepped over a paint tray delicately, picking her way past the sawhorses and a couple of dusty potato sacks, toward two guys yammering into their cell phone headsets.

    They were the self-styled kings of Manhattan nightlife, and while their press clippings might reach to the ceiling, neither was taller than five-five, and Eliza towered over both of them in her four-inch Louboutin platforms. Alan Whitman was balding and dough-faced, but he’d been legendary since ninth grade at Riverdale, when he’d begun his career selling pot at the Limelight. He’d oozed his way up a string of downtown hot spots until he’d raised enough money to open his trio of celebrity playgrounds—Vice, Circus, and Lowdown. He liked to say that before he’d gotten his hands on Paris Hilton, she was just a cute little Dwight sophomore in a rolled-up uniform skirt. He’d been the one who’d waived Paris past the ID check and had personally alerted gossip columnists when she was dancing on the tables—or falling off them—on any given night. His partner, Kartik (one name only), a Miami transplant, had been friends with Madonna back when he was still a teenager and she was still a dog-collar-wearing pop icon, not a dowdy children’s book author who answered to the name Esther.

    “What do you mean the liquor license is delayed? Are you serious?” Alan whined into his receiver.

    “Babycakes, of course we’ve got the permits in hand,” Kartik smoothly promised on his cell. “We’re ready to roll. We’re all set for the after-party, no problem!”

    Eliza stood aside patiently, watching the guys tell two different stories on their phones. It was inspirational, really: If Alan Whitman could transform himself from some geeky kid who sold oregano dime bags out of his Eastman backpack into New York’s most sought-after nightclub promoter, then surely she, Eliza Thompson, could find a way to reinvent herself from fallen Manhattan It Girl into Hamptons royalty. After all, Eliza had always wanted to be a princess.

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    Meet the Author

    Melissa de la Cruz is the #1 bestselling author of books for readers of all ages, including the Witches of East End, Blue Bloods, and Descendants series.

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