Dirty Little Secret

Dirty Little Secret

by Jennifer Echols

Paperback

$18.99
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Overview

By the acclaimed author of Such a Rush, Jennifer Echols returns with Dirty Little Secret, a romantic drama that follows two sisters as they navigate the passions, heartbreaks, and intrigue of country music fame.

I was being given the chance to do the one thing I wanted most in the world. The chance was presented to me by a guy so gorgeous, he turned my skin to fire when he touched me. And joining a band was the one thing I was most forbidden to do, the thing that would ruin my future forever.

Eighteen-year-old Bailey has issues—and not just that she’s lying to her grandfather about playing fiddle in a Nashville bar. There’s how her younger sister Julie’s recording contract makes her family terrified that Bailey will mess the deal up. And why Bailey is acting out. And the way everyone seems mad at her, even Julie. Bailey’s parents don’t want her playing gigs at all, but when they leave her with her grandfather so they can tour with Julie, she lands a job playing old country songs in cheesy costumes at a local mall. That’s where she meets Sam...

Sam doesn’t plan to spend his life playing backup at the mall for his alcoholic dad. He intends to take his high school garage band to the big time, and when he hears Bailey play, he knows she’s what he wants.

Bailey isn’t sure where she stands with this boy who has a lust for music and life, and who may or may not have a lust for her. And yet, suddenly, her life is no longer about what might have been, and a whole lot about what could be...


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781451658040
Publisher: MTV Books
Publication date: 04/22/2014
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Jennifer Echols was born in Atlanta and grew up in a small town on a beautiful lake in Alabama—a setting that has inspired many of her books. Her nine romantic novels for young adults have been published in seven languages and have won the National Readers’ Choice Award, the Aspen Gold Readers’ Choice Award, the Write Touch Readers’ Award, the Beacon, and the Booksellers’ Best Award. Her novel Going Too Far was a finalist in the RITA and was nominated by the American Library Association as a Best Book for Young Adults. She lives in Birmingham with her husband and her son. Visit her at Jennifer-Echols.com.

Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Dirty Little Secret includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Introduction

Bailey Mayfield is in trouble. After a high school graduation party, she got in a car accident that’s put her on probation with her parents. They sentence her to spend the summer before college working with her grandfather with one rule: No playing in bands.

At first, Bailey is going to stick to her word. But when her grandfather gets her a gig playing at the local mall and he vows to stick up for her if her parents find out, she convinces herself this one infraction of her parents' no-bands rule is okay. Then she falls head over fiddle for the sexy Sam Hardiman, a singer with a band of his own. Soon they’re playing on the Nashville circuit, where, Bailey says, “a country legend might drop in and change our lives with one phone call.” Ultimately, Bailey is presented with a choice: her love, her music, or her family.

Topics & Questions for Discussion

1. Early on, Bailey writes the costumer for the mall band “was way too polite to be baited into admitting my look was the stuff of her nightmares” (2). Given Bailey’s attitude, what was your first impression of her? How does that impression change?

2. Bailey is raised in a musical family. Why do you think music—which is so close to the hearts of her mother, father, grandfather, and sister—is the way she chooses to act out against them?

3. When Sam comes over and speaks to Bailey’s grandfather, what sets her grandfather at ease? Why is Sam better at getting him to trust them than Bailey is?

4. Why does Bailey wear a shrug when she’s leaving her grandfather’s house for her first gig and take it off in Sam's truck?

5. Why is Bailey’s grandfather more accepting of her than her own parents?

6. The first time Bailey and Sam kiss, Bailey thinks, “I didn’t want him to know how he was affecting me, in case he didn’t feel the same way.” Given where their relationship is going at this point, why is Bailey so afraid of showing her feelings?

7. When Bailey’s nearly mugged, she says she’d rather give up her wallet and ID card than her fiddle. Is there a special object like that that defines who you are, that you wouldn’t give up for money or safety?

8. Over and over, Bailey vows to leave Sam’s band and never return. What keeps her coming back for more?

9. “Sam was creative and dedicated, but his wasn’t the plodding bright-and-early work ethic of the morning person like mine” (198). Are you more of a Bailey—early rising writer type—or more of a Sam—late-night brooding type?

10. If Charlotte is interested in Ace, why do you think she can’t move on from Sam and leave him for Bailey?

11. Why does Bailey, upon seeing the billboard for her sister Julie’s show, decide she wants to go to the Grand Ole Opry with Sam in tow, even though she knows it will be painful?

12. What compels Bailey to keep coming through for her sister—going into hiding then coming to cheer her on for her show—despite all that her mother, sister, and father have done to her?

Enhance Your Book Club

1. “No country costume could have prepared me for dressing up like Dolly Parton’s right hand girl,” Bailey remarks during her first gig at the mall (21). Have you ever had to wear a uniform—or a silly costume—for work?

2. Bailey and Sam spend a lot of time seeing other bands performing in Nashville. If you can, take your reading group to a restaurant, bar, or other venue that has live music. Perhaps you should even go in costume!

3. To get in the Southern mood for your reading group, serve BBQ ribs, mac and cheese, grits, and cornbread!

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