There is a new feeling now when I wake in the morning. A feeling I am moving forward. I can tell I am gorwing stronger, and it's not just physical. Soon, when people think of Carissa, the most popular girl at Stanway, they will think of me too. Samuel and Carissa. Nothing can ruin it. Not the stupid new house, not the designer valley that surrounds it. If I am patient, if I work to a plan, this will be my year. But plans have a way of falling over, and other people have a bad habit of getting in the way. People like Kurt, with his made-to-order smile, or Leon, bigger than any teenager has a right to be. People like Carissa, who has her own nightmare to live. Then there's Samuel himself, and all the trouble he attracts. He'll need to be even stronger than he imagines. This is some year. Whether or not it's Samuel's won't be be decided until the very end.
April 2000 : New Zealand Paperback