Hotlanta (Hotlanta Series)

Hotlanta (Hotlanta Series)

by Denene Millner

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Hotlanta (Hotlanta Series) by Denene Millner

Designer clothes. Gorgeous boys. Family secrets. Major drama. Welcome to Atlanta and the lives of the Duke twins, Sydney and Lauren. They don't call it Hotlanta for nothing! The Duke twins, Sydney and Lauren, live the life: They attend the fanciest school in Atlanta, they live in Buckhead, the most exclusive neighborhood, and they only date the hottest guys. And their secrets? Are the darkest of all. When their estranged father is released from prison and a murder is committed, their lives are plunged into a whirlwind of tabloid scrutiny, vicious gossip, and shocking revelation. Lauren, always such a party girl, and Sydney, bent on perfection by way of the Ivy League, can't trust anyone. Not their mother, not their rich stepfather. Maybe not even each other.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780545231633
Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date: 01/01/2010
Series: Hotlanta Series , #1
Sold by: Scholastic, Inc.
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 288
File size: 401 KB
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Denene Millner is a columnist for Parenting magazine and has worked as an entertainment journalist for Honey and The Daily News. Her books include The Sistahs' Rules, the adaptation of Dreamgirls, and she coauthored The Vow with Mitzi Miller and Angela Burt-Murray. Denene lives in Atlanta with her husband and two daughters.

Mitzi Miller is a freelance journalist and screenwriter and a former associate at Jane magazine. She's written for Elle (U.K.), Essence, Vibe and Honey magazines and is the coauthor of The Vow and The Angry Black Woman's Guide to Life. She resides in New York City.


A Conversation with Mitzi Miller and Denene Millner

How long have you known each other?

MM: Denene and I have known each other for a little over five years. We met when I joined the Honey staff as an intern.

DM: Mitzi and I met while working together at Honey -- what seems like eons ago! She was an intern; I was the features editor who edited her first-person column, where she regularly found herself doing all kinds of crazy things, like rallying to "free" the rapper, Slick Rick, or joining a black motorcycle crew. I liked her from the moment I met her -- loved her energy and humor. When she walked in a room, the temperature automatically changed; I often tell her that she needs a spotlight and a soundtrack when she walks -- that's how electrifying she is! It's a blessing to be her friend.

How do you actually do the writing? Who writes what, and how do you communicate about it?

MM: It's kind of like The Transformers: we come together to create a very, very detailed outline of the entire book. And then we separate to write our individual chapters. As we finish writing, we exchange chapters and edit each other.

DM: Thank the Lord for e-mail -- that's all I have to say about that! I live in Hotlanta, and Mitzi lives in New York, so we have to be really clear and detailed about what we're going to write and then stick to it. After four books together, Mitzi and I have it down cold. We think a lot alike, we listen to each other, and we both love a good story that moves, so that helps a lot.

What inspired you to write the Hotlanta series?

MM: Reading the Gossip Girl books and watching The Hills. There was such a need for the African-American version of the story to be told.

DM: There were several inspirations: My daughters, who are avid readers thirsty for characters that look like them; and my niece, who is a Georgia Peach to the core and surrounded by funny, adventurous, cool friends who fit the mold of the Duke sisters. My hope is that Hotlanta gives African-American teenagers the stories they crave, so that they don't feel compelled to read books they're not ready for.

What was the biggest challenge in co-writing Hotlanta?

MM: Normally, I would assume the character that is outrageous and over the top. I had to focus really hard to find the extra-conservative, color-within-the-lines part of my personality that most resembles Sydney.

DM: Boy -- that had to be assuming the character of Lauren. She's high-wattage, saucy -- a wild child. The complete opposite of me. So getting into her head and climbing into her shoes was quite interesting and challenging -- but fun!

How is writing for teens different from other writing?

MM: The attention span of most teenagers is so short, we had to jump right into the story with a big bang and constantly raise the stakes to keep their interest. On the contrary, when writing for adults, there's the slow build that creates anticipation.

DM: I think the fast pace of the story is probably the most glaring difference. Teens want it quick; they don't need all the flowery details and background that you get in adult fiction. They're also so fast -- just when you think you've caught on to what they're into, and you commit it to a page in the manuscript, two other things have come along and replaced it, and you may not even realize it.

How were you able to channel the voices of the teen characters in Hotlanta, namely the Duke twins?

MM: I watched several Saturday afternoon marathons of MTV's My Super Sweet 16 and tapped into my inner perfectionist.

DM: I'm surrounded by teenagers; I lived with my then-16-year-old daughter for a year, and my 15-year-old stepson lives here, too. He's a football player, super smart, and an all-around good guy who is quite helpful with letting me know whether something rings true or not. Of course, MTV is a staple, as is the ABC show Friday Night Lights, which has incredible writing and a great southern teenage voice with which I could identify. All too often, you find that the teenage voice in books/TV/movies are exclusive to big cities, and the voices of teens in small towns, particularly in the South, go unheard. So paying attention to the teens around me, and a few of the shows helped a lot.

How is Hotlanta different from other teen series out there?

MM: Hotlanta focuses on the elite of the southern African-American community. So you're dealing not just with the rich, or even rich African Americans, you're dealing with rich African-American southerners. And they are definitely a class with a culture of its own.

DM: It's set in the South, and it features African-American characters who are well-to-do and smart and socially savvy and southern, so it automatically sets itself apart from a lot of the books out there, which often don't have black characters, and, when they do, are set in gritty urban settings.

Which of the Duke twins are you more like, Sydney or Lauren?

MM: I'm definitely more like Lauren -- impulsive, over-the-top, loyal almost to a fault, and with a really good heart.

DM: Boy, Sydney is me to a tee. I was -- and still am -- that girl: over-achieving, deeply concerned for others, a perfectionist.

How hot is Hotlanta really?

MM: Money, murder, and hot boys -- Hotlanta is blazin'!

DM: Can't you feel the heat? Sizzling!

Customer Reviews

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Hotlanta 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 32 reviews.
vickibby More than 1 year ago
I loved it. I'm not that much of a reader but this book kept me interested the whole time. I kept wanting to read and read so i could figure out how it ended. The end was a little dissapointing but it only made me want to read the second book even more.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Very interesting and engaging, you become connected to both twins very quickly, and in completely different ways. The overall plot is a bit on the predictable side, but the book itself is very good and I found it quite enjoyable and even suspenseful.
Talitha McQueen More than 1 year ago
Laurens life speak to me
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
this was a really great book! i could not put it down. everything about the book was interesting: the story line, the romances and the characters. i want to finish reading the whole series and i plan to. i was not disappointed at all.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Atlanta just wouldn't be anything without the Duke twins.

First there is Sydney, the twin who knows exactly what she wants in life, which is to get out of high school at the top of her class, go to an Ivy League college, and develop the perfect family. Sydney's hobbies include planning social events, making sure she has enough extracurricular activities, and hanging out with her wonderful boyfriend.

Then there is Lauren, who wants to become the biggest super-model ever, trying to grab the attention of those who can take her places. Her hobbies include reckless driving and getting in the hottest music video ever made.

Even though they are totally different from one another, they both share the same story. Their biological father was sent away to prison but their mother married soon after that, making the girls' lives go from rags to riches.

Their lives were pretty sane after adapting to their new lifestyles. Then they receive a phone call that their father is finally out of prison, and chaos breaks loose. Sydney, who still cares for her father, doesn't mind seeing him again, but Lauren regrets ever knowing him. Soon enough the girls' worlds are turned upside down as crimes are committed and their new family name is in trouble. Everyone they know has a secret, and the only ones they can turn to are each other.

Thrilling and very entertaining, HOTLANTA gives another perspective on how the lives of the wealthy have major flaws. The best part is, the story of the Duke twins isn't over yet, since the sequel, IF ONLY YOU KNEW, will be releasing in the fall!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book was good. The only problem was the end, i was like man are you serious its over!
Guest More than 1 year ago
dis book is hot lik fire i lov the it shows it from the girls piont of view . i hav yet 2 read the 2 one but im going 2 . i think its a great book because it shows lov , hate , pain ,and fear .
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was written really well. Very dramatic though. Easy to follow. But the only thing I didn't like was the ending. Yea I understand there will be a second book but the cliffhanger was just really crappy. Overall though it was a really good book. I'll be buying the second one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just love the drama!!!!!!! the that boy lauren was dating he sounded hot!!!!! you should make a series of that i would buy all of it!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was unable to leave the book it caugth my interest from begining to end . easy to follow plot and very entertaining
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is amazing! A total must read.
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So far i have read the sample and i am already impress
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