The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball

The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball

by Risa Green

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Overview

Now that Erin has finished her turn with the magical, pink crystal ball that she inherited from her crazy Aunt Kiki, it's finally Samantha's chance to make all of her dreams come true. But figuring out how to get what she wants doesn't come quite as easy as she thought it would. When Samantha's wish to be discovered by a Hollywood director doesn't go exactly as planned, when the college guy she's falling for isn't falling for her back, and when her mother begins flirting with an old high school flame, Samantha worries that maybe the ball will never work it's magic for her. But with Erin and Lindsay by her side, and with a little help from, of all people, Chris Bollmer, Samantha realizes that she can make her future happen all by herself, and that there are no shortcuts to achieving your dreams. But then again...in a world where nothing is certain, a little magic couldn't hurt, right?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781467924207
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 05/22/2012
Pages: 340
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.76(d)
Age Range: 12 - 15 Years

About the Author

Risa Green is the author of four novels, including the critically acclaimed adult novels, Notes From the Underbelly and Tales From the Crib, as well as the first in the Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball series. Her adult novels were the basis for the 2007-2008 ABC television series titled Notes From the Underbelly. Risa also writes a popular weekly blog called Tales from the Mommy Track for both www.mommytracked.com and www.modernmom.com. Prior to becoming a writer and mother of two, Risa worked as a high school college counselor, and also spent two years doing hard time as a corporate attorney. Born in the Philadelphia area, Risa now lives in Los Angeles and somehow squeezes in a few hours of writing each day between morning and afternoon carpool runs.

Read an Excerpt

From Chapter One

Things About Me That Might, in Some Alternative Universe, Be Interesting Enough for the Committee of Tenth Grade Teachers to Pick Me for the AP Art History Trip to Italy

  • I have the highest GPA in the tenth grade.
  • I can recite the periodic table in alphabetical order to the tune of the disco classic "YMCA."
  • In fifth grade, I won a silver medal in the New York Times Crossword Puzzler contest, junior division. And I would have won the gold, if I had not been competing against a nine-year-old prodigy from Ohio who knew that a beast with twisted horns is called an eland.
  • When I was five, I had an extra row of bottom teeth. Like a shark.
  • I am so flat-chested that they do not make a bra in my size. Not even a training bra.
  • I play a mean game of rummikub.
  • According to family history, I am a distant relative of Susan B. Anthony, the first women's suffragist in the United States.
  • I am most likely the only person under the age of forty who has attended a Barry Manilow concert.
  • Did I mention that I have the highest GPA in the tenth grade? My God, am I boring...

- - -

I jump nearly a foot off of my bed, startled by a roar of thunder.

Lindsay and Samantha, my two best friends, are lying on the floor, flipping through last week's issue of Teen People. But either a) they both have been cleverly hiding from me the fact that they are completely deaf, or b) they are simply too engrossed in the trials and tribulations of young Hollywood to have noticed that the sky almost just completely broke in half.

Finally, after another heavy rumble, Lindsay drops the magazine and rolls over onto her back.

"I'm so tired of this rain," she complains to no one in particular. "I don't understand how I'm ever supposed to get my driver's license if it keeps pouring like this. My dad won't let me practice if it's even overcast outside, let alone if an eighth ocean is falling from the sky. I mean, enough already. It's been almost a week."

Samantha grabs the magazine off the floor where Lindsay left it, and brings it close to her face to get a better look. I have no idea why she obsesses over these magazines the way she does. Samantha is effortlessly attractive and by far the best-dressed girl in the whole school, probably even the whole county.

She has perfect, wavy dark blonde hair, a tall slender body that most people would have to work out four hours a day and only eat wheatgrass to attain, and her mother's entire designer wardrobe at her disposal. (Did I mention that her mother used to be a model? Did I also mention that Samantha totally inherited her legs?) Plus, she's got an innate sense of style that most celebrities have to hire Rachel Zoe to achieve. I mean, have you ever seen anyone wear Commes des Garçons with Converse? (Actually, have you ever seen anyone wear Commes des Garçons? So. Weird.) But seriously, she could easily be in one of those magazines. Of course, if you ask her, she'll say, "I hate the way I look." She isn't fishing for compliments either. It's still something I've never figured out about her.

"God, what is up with those lashes?" she asks aloud. "This model looks like she has spiders crawling out of her eyes." Samantha puts the magazine back down on the carpet and turns to look at Lindsay. "FYI, it's all our parents' fault. If they hadn't spent the '80s running around with aerosol hairsprays and insecticides and Styrofoam cups, we wouldn't have any of this extreme weather today."

"My dad probably did it on purpose," Lindsay remarks. "I'll bet you he only used products with CFCs in them, in the hope that one day his actions would prevent his future daughter from ever getting behind the wheel of a car."

"Mmm-hmmm," I say, half ignoring them-because Lindsay always complains about not having her driver's license and Samantha always blames her parents for every­thing-but also because I am too busy staring at the fluo­rescent yellow flyer that Mr. Wallace gave to everyone in my AP Art History class today. At the top, it implores us to Pay Attention! And besides, there's no point in telling either of them that chlorofluorocarbons were banned from aerosol sprays in 1978, or that Styrofoam has nothing to do with extreme weather patterns. They wouldn't listen anyway.

Suddenly, a flapping mass of paper hits me in the face. I look up from the handout that I've tacked to the bulletin board next to my bed.

"Ow," I say, rubbing my forehead and laughing in spite of myself. "Why'd you throw that magazine at me? And don't blame one of your celebrity crushes."

Samantha arches her eyebrow. "You've been completely ignoring us since we got here, and I, for one, am starting to take it personally. What's going on in that genius-girl head of yours?"

With a sigh, I pull the tack out of the handout and hold it up for them to see. I do my best to appear nonchalant. "It's a contest. Mr. Wallace announced it today in AP Art History. The district was given a grant to send five kids to Italy for two weeks this summer, so that they can study great works of art. And the district pays for everything. Plane tickets, hotels, food, even admittance to the museums." The inside of my stomach dances around just thinking about it.

"Let me see," Lindsay demands. She gets up from the floor and flops down next to me on my bed, taking the flyer. I peer over her shoulder, rereading it for the millionth time today as she reads it aloud to Samantha.

Pay Attention! An Unforgettable Summer Experience!

Five lucky students will be chosen to travel to Italy with Mr. Wallace, where they will study works by the great Italian masters in Rome, Venice, and Florence.

To be eligible to apply, you must:

  • Be a student in AP Art History, with a grade of at least an A-.
  • Write an essay explaining why you should be chosen to go on this trip.
  • Applicants will be judged on their essays, as well as on their personalities, outside interests, and strength of character, as determined by a Committee of Tenth Grade Teachers.
  • Applications are due to Mr. Wallace by 5:00 p.m., next Thursday!

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The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Sandy Craig More than 1 year ago
I LOVE this book!! i finished it in a day. a MUST read! :)
pagese More than 1 year ago
I was happy to discover this book wasn't as shallow as I initially feared. 3 teenagers and the power to make even their silliest dream come true can make for a pretty frivolous story. But, they learn the hard way that things aren't always what they seem, and some things are better left that way they are. I actually really liked Erin. She seems the most level headed of her friends, but gives into the pressure (which I almost would have be more disappointed if she hadn't). She's dealing with the death of aunt who walked out of her life for unknown reasons. A mother who is dealing with her sister's death the only way she knows how. Plus, that mysterious pink crystal ball that she doesn't believe can do what her friends think it can (at first). It's fun watching what the ball can do and how it can twist around what Erin asks for. Erin learns what she thinks should happen isn't always how it plays out. I also liked how she was able to learn about her aunt and help her mom deal with her death. I think the book touches on many different issues in a teens world without making any of them the sole subject of the book. It deals with death, peer pressure, family issues, appearances, bullying, and first loves. I thought it was all very well done. The books has the potential to turn into a series. I'm hoping the next owner of the ball learns some lessons just as Erin did.
QAZ More than 1 year ago
Wow this takes you to almost another planet where an almost magic sort of 8 ball rules you life
KrittersRamblings More than 1 year ago
A cute read worth grabbing off the bookshelf. A girl is given "power" through a crystal ball where she can help change her future, thanks to her aunt who has recently passed away. I fell in love with his YA book from start to finish. An easy read with a main character and sub characters that grab your attention from the first page. I was drawn to these three girls and loved their differences, but knew their friendship was genuine even with their different family backgrounds. I loved the ups and downs of the plot that seemed realistic, yet with a twist of magic the story kept evolving. The play on "Mean Girls" was a great addition to the plot. The dueling girl groups with funny nicknames were hilarious and the voodoo dolls and trickery between them was just fun to read. A great light girlie read that was perfect for a day by the pool.
LASR_Reviews More than 1 year ago
High school is all about making choices, hopefully the right ones, too. But what if you had a way to get around making those choices and just make things happen? What would your life look like then? That is exactly what Erin Channing is trying to find out. Armed with nothing more than her two best friends and a pink plastic crystal ball, they embark on a journey that is both mystical, amusing, and emotionally liberating. Erin is your average high school kid with an above average intelligence. She tends towards the rational and logical in most things, although sometimes she does allow herself to get caught up in the whirlwind that is her two best friends. Considering the fact that she's in the middle of high school and in the midst of more drama than any one tenth grader needs, she is relatively level-headed and a great kid. I love the fact that she steps outside her comfort zone, no matter how freaked out it makes her, and takes a chance to gain the affection of a boy who was once her best friend and now, possibly more. And while she does make mistakes, they're always because she had someone else's best interests at heart. Erin is definitely the kind of kid I'd want to be friends with. The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball is a wonderfully written story of love, friendship, and wishes that really do come true. Written in a style that makes me think of chick lit for teens, Ms. Green is a master at the art of making you laugh out loud. She knows just how to weave a sense of mystery into an otherwise regular story, adding just a bit of something exciting to keep you reading and wanting more. A sure fire hit with any teen girl or any mom who once was a teen and is now raising one of her own. Originally posted at: Aurora Reviews
ylin.0621 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball was adorable, adorable, adorable. It is a quintessential middle grade novel that deals with friends, nemeses, and cute boys that never really ventures down from the surface level. As a side plot Erin deals with her favorite aunt¿s death and what she left behind: A group of friends that Erin is slightly afraid of and a disorientated sister who wants her sister¿s ashes. But the most important of all is the pink crystal ball that may have the ability to alter the future.Erin calls herself boring, but the magic ball will definitely spice up her life especially when she¿s partnered with Jesse in her AP Art project. Erin is definitely the voice of reason in the story, but I feel like she¿s trying to grasp those last few strings that tie her friends together by going along with their plan. As the reader we obviously know that nothing good will come out of the ball so all I think of when reading the novel was ¿NO!¿no, don¿t listen to them! No don¿t ask for that!¿ Sadly Erin does and the story starts to spiral as nothing goes right. But like any fun, flirty book Erin manages to pull her life together piece by piece. She starts to loosen up from the structured life that she¿s so used to. She listens to advice, takes it, molds it and takes action. The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball was a progression of a girl living her life to the fullest.The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball was a well-paced, simple book that will take readers¿ less than a day to finish. It¿s such a sweet little book because of the romance with Jesse. It wasn¿t the high level of adrenaline and OMG, he¿s soooo hawt and we must kiss and we¿re so perfect for each other *sparkle, sparkle, glitter, fireworks*. This was a much simpler, hand holding that makes the day with a chaste kiss.
_Lily_ on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball by Risa GreenReviewed by Moirae the fates book reviews.In a world where nothing is certain, a little magic couldn't hurt...right?When Erin Channing's favorite aunt dies, Erin is bequeathed a pink crystal ball and a set of weird instructions. Granted, Aunt Kiki (aka Aunt Kooky) always lived "outside the box." But now Erin and her two best friends are convinced that the pink crystal ball holds the key to their future-or at least the key to getting dates...Consider Your Fate to Be Sealed . . . Absolute knowledge is not unlimited; let the planets be your guide to the number. There are sixteen ways to die, but four of them you will never see. The future belongs to you alone. Other voices will be disappointed.One rotation is as far as you can see. Only uncertainty lies beyond. (Synopsis provided by goodreads)I really enjoyed this book. It was fun, lighthearted and cute. I thought that Erin was a very believable character and her struggles felt genuine. Her friends were also likable, Samantha was a little irritating at times but still she was a fun character. I liked the relationship between Jesse and Erin, it developed slowly and the issues that they faced were issues that could have been any high school love. Lindsay, was a typical high school girl who has a problem with being bullied and she makes a mess of things but is able to see the error of her ways. All of the characters were real and true characters they were fun and an over all delight to escape with. The way the book ended left it open to a sequel and I really hope Green writes one for it.If you are looking for a fun fast lighthearted read give this a try. * Reading level: Ages 13 and up * Paperback: 320 pages * Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire; 1 edition (September 1, 2010) * ISBN-10: 1402241062 * Author: Risa Green * Cover Art: Cute. * Overall rating: **** out of 5 stars * Obtained: My personal book shelf.
blodeuedd on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This one was fun and cute, the cover delivered what it should have.Erin the girl with the highest GPA in her the 10th grade, and some might see her as a bit boring. But she had her 2 best friends and she is happy, sort of. Because she really wants to go to Italy but she has to write this essay and nothing has ever happened to her. Until her aunt dies and leaves her a magical crystal ball, suddenly things start happening.Of course these are teenage girls so what to they ask for. Bigger boobs, to be kissed, to get a date, to ace that exam, things like that. Of course at first they do not know what to think but then things start happening. Is it magic or not?The book also has its mean girl who is harassing Lindsay, Erin's bff. And things get serious there too. Bullying going to far. And then there is Samantha, Erin's other friend who is more or less stalking this guy because she really wants to be with him. But perhaps the perfect guy is not the guy you should be with. And do not forget tension as magic starts spiralling out of control.I shall not forget the romance, Erin notices that the unlikely guy perhaps is the guy. I think they would be really sweet together.The fun with this book is that the magic had logical explanations too, so magic or not, that is the question. But at least it brought the friends closer together, and they all went on with their lives. Leaving things behind and discovering new things.A fun, and cute book. Magic gone wrong can be amusing. I liked this one, and it was such an easy read. And I'd like to read more.Blodeuedd's Cover Corner: AdorableFinal thoughts: A lighter paranormal with romance and friendship.
drebbles on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Erin Channing desperately wants to be one of the students in her high school who is chosen to study art in Italy over the summer and with her GPA she thinks she has a pretty good chance. Still, she¿s trying to make sure she does nothing to jeopardize her chances of going. All of that changes, however, when her favorite Aunt, Kiki, dies and leaves her a pink crystal ball and a cryptic set of instructions. The crystal ball seems to be able to predict the future and soon the lives of Erin and her friends Lindsay and Samantha are changed ¿ forever.¿The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball¿ is a delightful book for young adults. It is almost as if author Risa Green put several ingredients ¿ high school life, best friends, crushes, teenage angst, bullying, sadness, magic, riddles, art, and more ¿ into a magic 8-ball, err, a pink crystal ball, shook it up, reached in, and came up with a book that is fun to read from start to finish. The book is written in the first person from Erin¿s point of view and Green does a great job with Erin¿s character ¿ she tends to think inside the box, has a crush on Jesse Cooper, gets very good grades in school, is a loyal friend, and really wants to go to Italy. Green does an equally good job with Lindsay who is bullied because of something she did years ago and who thinks she can find a way to beat the bullying by shopping at Ye Olde Metaphysical Shoppe. Samantha is the daughter of rich parents, a bit blasé, but insecure in her looks even though she is beautiful. While some of Aunt Kiki¿s friends seem stereotypical, by the end of the book she and her best friend Roni are anything but stereotypical. While there is sadness because of Aunt Kiki¿s death, and the typical angst of high school especially with a first love, and some serious bullying, there is also a wonderful sense of humor throughout the book. As for the magic of the pink crystal ball ¿ is it real or not ¿ well, that¿s up to you to decide.¿The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball¿ is an enjoyable book for young adults.
bookwormygirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed reading about Erin's perfectly boring life going up in smokes. She was a great character - a studious and good student, has the highest GPA in her class, she has two BFF's that she is extremely tight with (Samantha and Lindsay), she doesn't have any drama going on in her life - so when the opportunity arises for five students to take a trip to Italy with their professor, she worries that her boring life will not inspire one of the winning essays that will win her her passage to Italy. Then her favorite aunt Kiki passes away leaving her a pink crystal ball and Erin and her friends find themselves wishing on it. Mayhem ensues as their wishes become true with unexpected consequences.While Erin and her BFF's deal with all sorts of issues from grades, teen romance, parents and even school bullies they find themselves in some crazy fun scenarios. Chuckle inducing and a very feel good read - this is a super cute story to be enjoyed by teens and tweens alike. There is no cussing and only some PG-rated kissing. A very sweet story of friendship and living life to the fullest. A treat to read.
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Jenn-at-GirlsJustReading More than 1 year ago
This is an enjoyable, light YA read. It mixes a little bit of reality with a lot of teen drama. It actually reminded me a little of Ann Brashares' Traveling Pants series, slightly more straightforward with none of the twists or complexity. Though there were no surprises, I was still compelled to keep reading; thinking I'd just put it down and come back to it, I found myself picking it back up. Erin is endearing in her rigidity towards rules and life in general and I found myself cheering for her as she learns life doesn't always stay inside the box. Although I found her friends interesting, I would have loved to get to know them a little better. (However, I think Risa Green is reserving that for future books as this is set up nicely for sequels.) Erin also learns the importance of a little magic, but that nothing is more important than free will and the choices you make. And that sometimes, what you believe is more important than what is.