• Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Furious - Jill WolfsonSee larger image
See Hi-Res Jpeg image
See Hi-Res Tif image

email/print EmailPrint

Furious



Book Buy
Ebook Ebook 
    
Share this book with friends through your favorite social networking site. Share:           Bookmark and Share
Add this title to your virtual bookshelves at any of these book community sites. Shelve:             
sign up to get updates about this author
add this book's widget
to your site or blog

About The Author

Jill WolfsonJill Wolfson

Jill Wolfson has worked as a journalist for newspapers and magazines around the country. Her award-winning novels for young people include What I Call Life; Home, and Other Big, Fat Lies; and Cold Hands, Warm Heart. Jill has taught writing at several universities and is a... More

Stay In Touch

Sign up to recieve information about new releases, author appearances, special offers, all related to you favorite authors and books.

Other Books You Might Like

cover Buy

More formats
eBook
Cold Hands, Warm Heart

Henry Holt and Co.
Dani was born with her heart on the wrong side of her body. In her fifteen years of life, she’s had more doctor’s appointments, X-rays, and tests, and eaten...
cover Buy

More formats
eBook
What I Call Life

Square Fish
A witty and moving novel that uncovers another side of the foster-care system
cover Buy

More formats
eBook
Home, and Other Big, Fat Lies

Henry Holt and Co. BYR Paperbacks
The new novel from Jill Wolfson—an exciting, fresh voice in middle-grade fiction Whitney has been in so many foster homes that she can give a complete...
cover Pre-Order
Edda
A Little Valkyrie's First Day of School

Henry Holt / Christy Ottaviano Books
Edda is a Valkyrie (an ancient Norse goddess who guides and protects heroes). She lives in a magical land called Asgard where she has everything she wants....
cover Buy
The Talking Vegetables

Henry Holt and Co.
A wonderful folktale from the award-winning authors of Mrs. Chicken and the Hungry Crocodile The villagers are planting a garden, but Spider refuses to...
cover Buy
Sleeping Beauty
Les Petits Fairytales

Henry Holt and Co.
Discover the magic of Sleeping Beauty in this petite edition of the classic fairy tale, created especially for little readers with just a handful of words and...
cover Buy
The Sandman

Henry Holt and Co.
Where did that little piece of sand in the corner of your eye come from? That’s easy—the Sandman. It all started a long time ago when a tiny man named Tor...
cover Buy

More formats
eBook
The Witch's Curse

Henry Holt / Christy Ottaviano Books
A shadowy witch, a cursed hunter—it’s tricky business for Sol and Connie as they face off against this awful pair. The kids narrowly averted being eaten by the...
  
cover Buy
Bad Kitty Drawn to Trouble

A Neal Porter Book
In this seventh installment of the New York Times–bestselling series, Kitty encounters what may be her most formidable foe yet: her creator! Kitty soon learns...
cover Buy

More formats
Audio eBook
The Unwinding
An Inner History of the New America

Farrar, Straus and Giroux Paperbacks
The 2013 National Book Award Winner A New York Times Bestseller American democracy is beset by a sense of crisis. Seismic shifts during a single...
cover Buy
Big Board Books Colors, ABC, Numbers

Priddy Books
Bright Baby Colors, ABC, Numbers • Introduces three key first concepts: letters, number and colors • Helps babies and toddlers to build their early...

EXCERPT

1
 

When you’ve got an overbite and only one real friend and you’re what grown-ups euphemistically call “a late bloomer” (meaning I’m short and skinny where I shouldn’t be skinny and I just got my period), you pretty much accept that every day is bound to be a series of humiliations, large and small.
So given the sucky reality of being me, of being Meg, it’s really something to say that in my almost sixteen years of living, despite my many episodes of blowing it big-time, this particular day turns out to be the most humiliating one of my life.
More humiliating than when I was five and going to scary kindergarten for the first time and had to be pried loose from my foster mom. I was screaming and got a bloody nose from freaking out, and all the other kids were just sitting there—cross-legged and staring.
More humiliating than finding out too late that an eighth-grade girl should never stand at the school entrance and hand out valentines to all 167 members of her class. Especially when the cards are personally signed and individually addressed.
Even more humiliating than last week, when I must have had a brain drain that erased everything I ever learned from my previous humiliations. That’s the only explanation for how I could walk right up to this guy Brendon—this popular guy with adorable eye crinkles when he smiles—and blurt out that I had a two-for-one mini-golf coupon and maybe he might want to go with me sometime. I love mini-golf—I mean, who doesn’t? But Eye Crinkles only stared at me blankly, like he’d never seen me before, even though we’ve been in a ton of classes together for the past three years.
And now his friends make pretend golf swings whenever I walk by.
So probably you’re thinking, what could be more humiliating than that?
Hold on. It gets far worse.
A brief setting of the scene. Third period. 10th grade Western Civ, my favorite class this year, even though Ms. Pallas makes you work your butt off just for a B. All the usual characters are there. Our teacher is standing to the side of the room, arms crossed, listening to our first oral presentations of the semester. I am in my usual seat—not too close to the front, not way in the back either—right in the middle where it’s easy to get lost in the pack. Next to me, my best friend, Raymond, is totally engrossed in whatever genius thing he’s writing in his notebook.
In front of the class, one of the Double D twins, Dawn or DeeDee, is giving her presentation. Not to be mean or anything, but her report on ancient Sumerian civilization is crap. I’m just being truthful. I can’t imagine that she put in any more than twenty minutes to plagiarize from Wikipedia. Doesn’t she have any pride? Ms. Pallas won’t let her get away with it.
Anyway, the thing I remember next is getting distracted by what’s going on outside the window. This is taking place in a coastal town, a slice of surfer paradise wedged between the Pacific Ocean and a redwood forest. The geography here makes the weather unpredictable: sunny one minute, and then warm air hits cold ocean, which makes the fog roll in, and that’s what happens right then. It’s like the whole classroom gets whisked to a different place and a different day without anyone leaving their seat. Poof. It’s gray, dreary, and Jane Eyre–ish, which is fine with me. I’m not exactly embracing life these days.
And I’m not going to lie. As I watch the weather change, I am trying very hard not to think about that guy with the eye crinkles who happens to be sitting a mere few seats to my right. Only, of course, my mind-control technique is backfiring. All I can do is think about him.
What’s the matter with me? Wasn’t living through that embarrassment once enough? Why do I keep replaying it? For about the two-millionth time, I put myself through every mortifying detail. The pounding heart. The sweaty palms. My own voice confessing my love of mini-golf. The condescending look on his face. The heat rising to my cheeks. My stuttering apology for bothering him.
How could I have been so stupid?
Could I have made a more pathetic cry for love?
Why did I pick such a popular guy?
What was I thinking?
Why do these embarrassing things always happen to me?
Why me? Why not to other people? Why not to him?
Just once, I say to myself. Why can’t he feel what it’s like? He should try being me for once. He should feel every aching throb of longing for me that I feel for him, and then get shot down.
I let that idea sink in very deep, and—I’m not going to lie about this either—it gives me a real charge, a jolt of pleasure, to think about getting back at him in some way. I decide to stay with my fantasy, go with it. I let myself get really worked up at him, then even angrier. Why not? Who am I hurting?
So while Dawn or DeeDee drones on, and outside the fog turns to rain—not drizzle rain, but rain rain that slaps the windows in sheets—I let myself hate that boy with all my might. I savor every sweet detail of revenge that my mind conjures up. I let it become real.
First he will come begging to me for a date. He’ll be all shy and scared, and I’ll listen as he fumbles his words.
Then … and then … I won’t answer. I’ll just wrap both of my hands around his neck and pull him close and kiss him. I’ll kiss him so hard that he won’t know what hit him.
This fantasy is so much fun. It feels so good that I have to stop myself from cackling out loud like a crazed chicken. I actually put my hand over my mouth. It’s kind of scary how good it makes me feel, but scary in a very satisfying way.
And when he looks at me, dazed with love, I’ll ask, “So, change your mind about mini-golf?”
He’ll nod eagerly, hopefully, practically in pain with love for me, and I’ll shoot him down. Bam! I’ll yawn and say, “That was the most boring kiss ever. For you, Brendon, the mini-golf coupon has expired. Permanently.”
In public. So everyone hears.
And after that …
And after that?
I don’t know what happens after that. I really don’t. Something. I don’t remember much, not a whole lot that makes sense, anyway. A light flashes and the air moves in a swirling distortion, like the whole world has suddenly tilted on its side.
And there’s music. Definitely music. Who is playing music? Why is music playing? My mind latches on to the individual notes, a series of them that rise and fall in an eerie, whistling way. I don’t know this song.
But then, I do know it. I do! I don’t want it to ever go away.
Under the music, someone is laughing. And then someone else is shouting the word hate.
Hate! Hate! Hate!
A hand cups my shoulder, but I push it aside. There’s so much power surging through me. Someone is pulling on the hem of my shirt. I slap at it.
“Meg!” Pause. “Meg!”
I hear a bell then, loud and sharp, and I tremble with a jolt, as if waking suddenly out of a dream when you have a 103-degree fever. The music is gone. An empty silence has taken over. Reluctantly, I blink open my eyes.
I’m standing.
Not standing on the ground like your average, normal person, but standing on my chair.
In the middle of class. With my neck muscles straining and a layer of sweat on my forehead. And my throat dry and raw. And my fists clenched in tight balls at my side.
Ms. Pallas, directly in front of me, slams her ruler on my desk, and I feel the vibration ripple up through the bottom of my feet to my head. My brain feels like it’s been punched in the gut.
It all becomes clear then, too clear, and the word humiliation doesn’t begin to cover it.
It had been Raymond tugging on my shirt, calling my name. The bell was the end of class. And I was the one standing on my chair shouting, “Hate! Hate! Hate! I hate all of you.”

 
Text copyright © 2013 by Jill Wolfson

You May Also Be Interested In

cover Buy
We Are Witnesses
Five Diaries of Teenagers Who Died in the Holocaust

Square Fish
Voices that must be heard. Voices we must never forget.
  Bonus
cover Buy

More formats
eBook
Fighting Fire!
Ten of the Deadliest Fires in American History and How We Fought Them

Henry Holt and Co.
From colonial times to the modern day, two things have remained constant in American history: the destructive power of fires and the bravery of those who fight...
  
cover Buy
When the Wind Blew

Henry Holt / Christy Ottaviano Books
We all know the story of the old woman who lived in a shoe with her many children. But not everyone knows about the day when the wind blew very hard, and an...