Prom Dates from Hell (Maggie Quinn: Girl vs Evil Series)

Prom Dates from Hell (Maggie Quinn: Girl vs Evil Series)

by Rosemary Clement-Moore


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Maggie Quinn, girl reporter. Honors student, newspaper staffer, yearbook photographer.
   Six weeks from graduation and all she wants to do is get out of Avalon High in one piece. A sensible nerd would have kept her head down, done her drive-by photo shoot of the prom, and continued the countdown to Deploma Day. But fate seems to have different plans for Maggie.
   High school may be a natural breeding ground for evil, but the scent of fire and brimstone is still a little out of the ordinary. It's the distinct smell of sulfur that makes Maggie suspect that something's a bit off. And when real Twilight Zone stuff starts happening to the school's ruling clique—the athletic elite and the head cheerleader and her minions, all of whom happen to be named Jessica—Maggie realizes it's up to her to get in touch with her inner Nancy Drew and ferret out who unleashed the ancient evil before all hell breaks loose.
   Maggie has always suspected that prom is the work of the devil, but it looks like her attendance will be mandatory. Sometimes a girl's got to do some pretty undesirable things if she wants to save her town from soul-crushing demons from hell. And the cheerleading squad.

"Dripping with wit on nearly every page."-School Library Journal

"Smart (and smart-ass)."-KLIATT

"There is a lot to like in this story that takes on magic, romance, and even clique politics."-Publisher's Weekly

"Fans of shows like Charmed and Buffy the Vampire Slayer will relish the unflappable, edgy humor Maggie brings to her fight against supernatural evil."-The Horn Book Magazine

"Sharp, sarcastic wit...[This book] will appeal to supernatural fans of Meg Cabot's Mediator series."-VOYA

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780385734134
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 04/22/2008
Series: Maggie Quinn: Girl vs Evil Series
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.88(d)
Age Range: 14 - 17 Years

About the Author

ROSEMARY CLEMENT-MOORE is also the author of Hell Week, Highway to Hell, The Splendor Falls, Texas Gothic, and Spirit and Dust. She grew up on a ranch in south Texas and now lives and writes in Arlington, Texas. You can visit her at or follow her on Twitter @rclementmoore.

Read an Excerpt


As an interactive horror experience, with beasts from Hell, mayhem, gore, and dismemberment, it was an impressive event. As a high school prom, however, the evening was marginally less successful.

I should start at the beginning, but I'm not entirely certain when that is, so I'll start with the day I realized that despite my most determined efforts, I was not going to be able to ignore the prom entirely.

The end of April, and a rabid satin and tulle frenzy had attached to every double X chromosome in the senior class. All available wall space–hallway, cafeteria, even the bathrooms–sprouted signage in the most obnoxious colors possible. I was assaulted by flyers in the courtyard, and harassed by thrice-daily announcements. Had I gotten my tickets yet? Had I voted for the class song? Had I voted for the King and Queen? No, no, and Hell no, because voting for royalty was not just moronic, it was oxymoronic.

No one was safe from the Prom Plague. When dog-eared copies of Seventeen magazine started circulating through AP English, I knew I'd soon have to fall back to the band hall and call the CDC from there.

Then one day my neutrality was over. My indifference punctured. Stanley Dozer asked me to be his date.

Stanley Dozer was even lower on the high school food chain than I was, and I was in the journalism club. Sometimes I think God must have a kind of divine craps table; every once in a while He shoots snake eyes and the next baby born is screwed from the jump. I mean, "Stanley Dozer," for starters. Maybe he could have aesthetically overcome this name, but the guy was about six foot five, pale and bony as a corpse, with hair the color of spider webs. His ankles and wrists shot out of his too short jeans and the sleeves of his plaid button-down shirt. I sympathized with the sizing problems, but I had to wonder at the complete inattention to fashion. And by fashion I mean "camouflage."

Back on the middle school Serengeti I learned that, lacking a certain killer instinct, my best bet was to avoid standing out from the herd and making myself a target for the apex social predators, at least until I'd built up a tough skin. Now I'm sort of like the spiny anteater. Small and prickly, trundling along, a threat to no one. Except ants, I guess, which is where the metaphor runs out.

Back to Stanley's ambush. On the second-story breezeway that overlooked the courtyard below, the Spanish Club was selling candy to raise money for their Guatemalan sponsor child and I was taking their picture. Privately I thought little Juanita would benefit a lot faster if they sold tequila shots instead. Not that I advocate underage alcohol, but I bet there were a few teachers who could use a drink this time of year.

"Hi, Maggie!" Stanley's voice startled me.

I spun around, narrowly missing hitting him in his bony chest with my camera. I'm used to looking up, but with Stanley I had to crane my neck and squint. "Oh. Hi, Stanley."

Behind me, the Spanish Club giggled. What was Espa–ol for "Bite me"?

"How are you?" he asked, hefting his book bag onto his shoulder. The canvas bag bore the logo of the natural history museum. High on the geek quotient, but worlds better than the briefcase he'd carried freshman year.

"I'm taking some pictures for the yearbook." I hinted broadly that I was busy. After all, the next box of Chiclets might be the one that sent little Juanita to college.

"I saw you up here, and I thought . . . Well, you know how the prom is coming up?"

"Is it really?" I mumbled, messing with the settings on my camera. "I had no idea."

Sarcasm sailed over his head, which was a trick considering his height. He shuffled from foot to foot, giving the unfortunate appearance of a dancing skeleton. "Well, I was thinking you could go with me. We could, you know, go together."

The words entered my ears, but my brain rejected them. Stanley Dozer was not asking me to the prom. Words failed me, and that's just not something that happens. Ever. I'd known Stanley since his paste-eating days, and had always tried to be nice to him. I was the spoilsport who pulled the kick me sign off his back, or helped him pick up his books after he'd been tripped–either by his own overlong legs or someone else's. I guess if I were a better person I'd have befriended him more thoroughly. I felt bad about that, but not that bad.

"Wow. The prom." I stalled as the rest of the school continued normal operations, electric bells calling students to class, kids buffeting us as they passed on the breezeway, calling to the people below. "I really wasn't planning to go," I said honestly. "I might have to take pictures, but I'd kind of be working."

"Yeah, but if you have to go anyway . . ."

"Oh, you wouldn't have fun that way." I flipped through my mental student files, clinging to the notion that there is somebody for everyone. "What about Karen Foley? Weren't you guys in Mathletes together?"

"Until she blew our answer in the district semifinal round," Stanley sneered. "She's not nearly as smart as everyone thinks she is."

"Oh-kay. That was a little harsh."

"Yeah, well, Karen Foley is a dork."

And that was unkind and rather nasty. Also, Mr. Glass House didn't have any business throwing stones. But before I could react, someone grabbed Stanley from behind. Amid laughter and alarmed squeals, the breezeway cleared of traffic as Biff the Jock bent poor Stanley over for a noogie.

Biff wasn't his name, but he reminded me of the bully in Back to the Future, so that was the name my brain supplied. Though Stanley had half a foot of height on him, the football player was muscular, so watching Biff rough up the poor dweeb was like watching an English mastiff pin an Afghan hound.

"Hey, Bulldozer! Trying to get a date?" I willed Stanley to fight back; he should have leverage to his advantage if nothing else. But his spindly arms and legs just flailed around as the pack of jocks and cheerleaders jeered.

"Leave him alone," I said, not much more effectively.

"Awww." Biff wrapped a meaty arm around Stanley's neck and baby-talked, "Does oo haff a widdle girlfriend, Dozer?" His friends roared at this example of their leader's wit. Stanley's face was turning purple with what I hoped was rage and not asphyxiation.

"I said, leave him alone. Go find another Mack truck to pick on."

Biff's girlfriend–whose name, like half of the cheer squad, was Jessica–got up in my face. "That's so cute! I think she likes him back."

"How sweet." Biff and his friend pushed poor Stanley to the edge of the breezeway, pretending they were going to launch him over the brick barrier onto the courtyard below. "You going to fall for her, Bulldozer?"

Stanley didn't answer; he looked paralyzed by terror. The jocks might have been pretending, but the horror on Stanley's face was very real. I raised the best weapon at my disposal and clicked off a rapid-fire series of pictures on my camera. It got Cheerleader Barbie's attention.

"What are you doing!" Yell-leading had definitely developed her lungs. Her shriek made my right eye twitch, but I replied calmly.

"I'm documenting the event. Maybe for the principal. Maybe just for the school paper. Maybe for an insert, right next to the ballot for prom queen."

"You can't do that!" My eardrum gave a seismic shudder. "I've worked for four years. My mom already bought my dress. It's all planned, you hag." My camera clicked in her livid, bug-eyed face. It is probably all that saved me from her claws. Instead she turned to her boyfriend. "Let him go, Brandon! You and your stupid sense of humor."

Brandon. That was his real name. He and his buddies let poor Stanley go, and the geek collapsed onto the concrete in a jumble of bony elbows and knees as Brandon turned on me. "You are nothing but a snitch and a tattletale, Quinn."

"It's called investigative journalism, asshole. The next time I even hear about you attacking someone, I'll e-mail these pictures to the principal, the local paper, and the admissions board of every school with a Division One football team."

Brandon took a threatening step toward me, but restrained himself when I raised the camera. He gestured to his knuckle-cracking goon squad and they lumbered off, followed by Jessica, Jessica, and Jessica, who each gave me the death eye before they flipped their hair and flounced after them. I wondered if they worked on that synchronized hair flip during cheer practice.

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Prom Dates from Hell 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 52 reviews.
avid_readerJJ More than 1 year ago
This was an excellent book to read. I like it very much. I suppose the easiest way to put it is if you liked Buffy or Supernatural you will like this type of book. Short and sweet sums up this review.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was very interesting and a quick read. The main character is very likeable and full action! I would recommend this to 14 and up. The sequal comes out Aug 26, 2008.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Maggie Quinn is just weeks from graduating and getting away from Avalon High. But as the end of her high school years gets closer, Maggie gets warped into the wrath that is Prom. This only happens because Maggie had to protect the school outcast, Stanley, who was being picked on by the prime jocks and their girlfriends, the Jessicas. Maggie stops this by taking photos of the action, since she is the yearbook photographer, and threatens to use the hideous pictures against them. Maggie believes that she has done the right thing--that is, until Stanley starts yelling at her for helping him out and threatens to make them all pay.

Maggie ignores the threat, that is until she begins to have nightmares, which may seem ordinary, but for Maggie they only predict the future. Soon enough strange things begin to happen at school, all toward the six-pack of Jessicas and an unexpected student. The school's hottie even begins to notice Maggie.

Now Maggie has to put on her girl-sleuth outfit and figure out just what exactly is happening, along with Justin, the student that goes to the college that her father works at (if only he wasn't so cute). Let's just hope that Maggie can actually figure this out before things become permanent forever.

PROM DATES FROM HELL is definitely different, but in a very good way. Rosemary Clement-Moore takes on the Prom like never before. Even though everything may seem weird throughout the story, the ending actually makes it all seem so ordinary. And the relationship that blossoms between Maggie and a certain someone gives the book a little something extra.

Readers will not be disappointed with this great read, and some might even think about the consequences when someone bullies another.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book rocked. I just picked it up randomly and I turned out to love it. A great twist. Maggie Quinn's new book out now!
razzbelly on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was great. Laugh out loud on many occasions and even a twist at the end. I'd recommend it to anyone who is into the supernatural love stories out there.
escondidolibrary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I love this description from the back of the book:"Maggie Quinn's always suspected she's headed to hell in a handbasket. She never would have guessed she'd arrive in a prom dress". After strange things start happening to the popular kids at her high school (the Jocks and Jessicas), Maggie Quinn realizes that some sort of evil is behind it. She'd always been embarassed of her supernatual powers of perception before, but now she is embracing them in order to find out what is happening.
SJKessel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Clement-Moore, R. (2007). Prom Dates from Hell. New York: Delacorte Press.308 pages.Three pages into Prom Dates from Hell I knew I was going to love it. (Talk about a bias!) I loved the sarcastic, smart voice of Maggie Quinn right away. She reminded me of a hybrid of Veronica Mars and Buffy Summers. ...But I guess with dark hair.Appetizer: After stopping an incident of bullying in the halls, the three most popular girls in the senior grade (all named Jessica) take notice of Maggie and start to make her life hellish. While that would be bad enough, Maggie has been having dark dreams again, and that part of herself that is a seer like her grandmother has been awakened, just when *something* at the school is trying to make the most popular seniors suffer. Just in time for prom!No longer able to ignore her intuitions, Maggie enlists the help of an attractive college guy, Justin, to fight evil. While they quickly try different folk tactics to hold off the ghost/monster/shadow/demon-thing, it quickly becomes apparent that the beastie may be too much to contend with.I enjoyed Prom Dates from Hell enough that I will definitely be picking up the second and third books in the Maggie Quinn: Girl Vs. Evil series. Maggie has a lot of wonderfully sarcastic narration.I have to admit that while I was amused, I was not *completely captivated* by the story. I figured out who the real culprit was pretty early on (although, Clement-Moore did a good job of constructing her red herring.) I was also a little sceeved out by the age difference between Maggie and Justin. Although Justin's exact age is never specifically given. He's already in college and it's safe to assume he's far along in his program since he talks about graduate credits and what not. Speaking as someone who has been that age, I would have thought that a senior in high school was a wee-little baby and I NEVER would have considered dating someone in such a different position. And I know YA lit loves to have the high school girl date a college boy. But my immediate response is to wonder what is wrong with said college-aged character that he can't date someone his own age. Plus, beyond battling the forces of darkness, I didn't really feel a special connection between them beyond the occasional one-liner or the unfounded over-protectiveness on the part of Justin.Meh.Dinner Conversation: !!!"As an interactive horror experience, with beasts from Hell, mayhem, gore, and dismemberment, it was an impressive event. As a high school prom, however, the evening was marginally less successful.I should start at the beginning, but I'm not entirely certain when that is, so I'll start with the day I realized that despite my most determined efforts, I was not going to be able to ignore the prom entirely" (p. 1)."Back on the middle school Serengeti I learned that, lacking a certain killer instinct, my best bet was to avoid standing out from the herd and making myself a target for the apex social predators, at least until I'd built up a tough skin. Now I'm sort of like the spiny anteater. Small and prickly, trundling along, a threat to no one. Except ants, I guess, which is where the metaphor runs out" (p. 2)."Again my eye snagged on some dark movement--her shadow on the water? I barely had time to wonder, a half-fired neuron of warning, then everything went wrong" (p. 43)."What if I want to get in touch with you?" he asked."About my alleged psychic powers?""Maybe.""Then think about me real hard, and I'll know to give you a call." I flashed a sunny smile, put the Jeep in gear, and drove away. For the first time that day, I felt as if I'd gotten the upper hand in a human interaction" (p. 74)."I had a lot to do that afternoon. Besides homework, newspaper, and yearbook, there was saving the world as well. Where was I going to fit in a date?" (p. 190)"Witch hunts scared me. Not for the obvious reasons, but because they were so irrational that there was no defense against them.
JackDTeague on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Surprisingly fun to read. First book in a long time that I really wanted to get back to after putting it down, and even considered sneaking it into the office. I very much enjoyed the heroine, and the fact that she reads like a girl and not a guy with boobs, as she slowly comes around to accepting her talents. I appreciated the handing of her friends, her enemies, and how sometimes people can be both. Especially as those that seek to harm Maggie and those who seek to aid her must deal with unintended consequences. And in this story those things that seem like a good idea at the time can really turn around and bite you in the butt later on. Really.
TheLibraryhag on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Maggie Quinn is just your average school newspaper, yearbook staff geek, trying to graduate from high school. Yeah, she has dreams that come true, but that is sort of common in her family, on her dad's side anyway. But luck places Maggie in the wrong place at the wrong time, and now she has attracted the attention of an honest-to-gosh demon. With the help of some old and new friends, Maggie has to vanquish the demon and save her school, even the mean girls.I really enjoyed this book. Maggie has a with that would make Buffy proud. This is a fluffy paranormal story that will make you laugh. Pure fun.
Alliebeth927 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Maggie Quinn is your average high school nobody- and she's totally happy to blend in- until something dark starts stalking the popular crowd that tortures the kids like her. This book was a completely fabulous, light, pool side read. The plot moves along quickly enough to keep things interesting and the characters are all likable and well written. There were also a few unexpected twists in the ending that spiced things up even more. I could see Maggie Quinn: Girl vs. Evil becoming a successful series of YA mysteries that are part Nancy Drew, part Buffy. I'll definitely keep reading!
stephxsu on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
High school senior and aspiring journalist Maggie Quinn just wants to survive the last few weeks of high school without getting sucked into the prom madness. However, there¿s more on her plate to worry about when strange and horrible things begin to happen to her grade¿s ¿elite crowd,¿ lovingly called the Jocks and the Jessicas by Maggie. These boys and girls suffer accidents or lose what is most important to them, and Maggie, with the help of her friends, reluctantly admits that something sinister and distinctly hellish might just be happening, and it might take a trip to the prom for her to come get to the bottom of it.Oh, Rosemary, how do I love thy writing? Let me count the ways. Maggie is my kind of protagonist: smart, snappy, and always ready with a quip, even at the most inappropriate moments. Here is a girl who¿s not afraid to bust out SAT words in her narrative, even as she¿s demeaning her admittedly stereotypical but never uninteresting lower-intelligence classmates, or trying to kick evil¿s butt. She¿s a no-nonsense, smart-alecky girl thrown into a situation that¿s quickly turning unbelievable and distinctly UN-funny, and yet Maggie keeps her cool¿and her snarky comments¿consistently throughout.Because of Clement-Moore¿s fantastic writing style, even characters such as Maggie¿s two possible love interests¿Brian Baywatch, the rebel Jock with the lifeguard looks, and Justin, a student of the occult at the nearby university¿don¿t dissolve into stereotypical shining white knights (even if that is their character type). I would like to see more dimensions in Maggie¿s parents and her grandmother in future books in this series, but that is a minor complaint. The strength of Maggie¿s character is the thing that carries this book by far.If you¿re looking for a paranormal read that puts a smart twist on a familiar setting, look no further than Rosemary Clement-Moore¿s Maggie Quinn: Girl vs Evil series. I can¿t wait to read the next books!
simplykatie on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
this came at a perfect time for me. i wanted a fluffy slightly supernatural ya novel and bam, i got it. devoured the book in one sitting. i can't wait for the sequel.
kperry on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Maggie Quinn is a high school senior who spends her time taking photos for the yearbook and writing stories for the school¿s newspaper. She is completely content with staying under the radar in order to avoid coming into contact with the Jocks and the Jessicas (the girls that seem to run the school). Everything is working out just fine until she snaps some incriminating pictures of the Jocks bullying one of the bigger geeks of the school. Soon, after her creative photo rescue, Maggie starts having disturbing dreams. She has ignored her dreams for a long time and has tried to forget the fact that she has psychic abilities. But with someone or something picking off the Jocks and the Jessicas one-by-one, she is going to have to start tapping into her mojo. With the help of her Grandmother and a new friend named Justin, Maggie starts to put her powers to work to solve the mystery.Maggie Quinn is a delightful main character. She is quick witted, sarcastic, and cynical and her one-liners will have you rolling. Check out a couple of entries back for my ¿Say It Again¿ Saturday post where I listed a few of my favorite lines from PROM DATES FROM HELL. You¿ll want to pick up the sequel as soon as you finish. Also, there is a Buffy the Vampire Slayer connection - The Prom where Buffy saves the prom from the devil dogs has a similar feel.
abbylibrarian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Give this to the next Buffy fan to approach you for a suggestion, for serious. Maggie Quinn has always been somewhat intuitive. Her gran tells her that the Sight runs in the family. So when Maggie starts having horrific dreams about fire and brimstone and a shadowy demon, she's not completely surprised to find mysterious things happening at her high school. The first appearance is at the pool during gym class. Maggie notices a strange sulfuric odor and then her classmate Karen "accidentally" slips on the high dive, cracking her head on the board on her way down. Maggie knows that it's no accident and she sets out to get her Nancy Drew on. Luckily, she has a dreamy sidekick: an anthropology student in one of her father's classes at the university. Together, they'll have to figured out who summoned this demon, who's on the demon's hit list, and what they can do to stop it... Worst of all, Maggie might have to face her worst fear... going to the prom.
Phantasma on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book. It didn't go for the obvious cheesey cop-out, which I appreciated. I was pleased.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love Maggie Quinn, Justin and Lisa. Maggie is someone I can really empathize with because she tells it like it is and is good at quirky and sarcastic. The evil of the book was actually really creepy but that adds to the book. It was impossible to stop reading until I finished. I love this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Any one here. I am back. Write back if you want to talk
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She sighs.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Me to u there
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jk i will leave. Jesus
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She yawns. Walking into a door
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We r over
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
U there
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sits alone
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Oh yay. Ur finally here