Vivian Vande Velde Main Page
Deadly Pink
Ages: 12 and up
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Book Description:

Fourteen-year-old Grace must find a way to get her older sister out of a princess-filled virtual reality role playing game--before it is too late.

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Review
Where do you GET those ideas?
Excerpt
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Review

"Vande Velde again traps teenagers inside an authentically depicted arcade game--but here she works twists into the premise that are both amusing and crank up the danger." -- Kirkus

Where do you GET those ideas?

What can I say?  I love the idea that there could be games such as the ones Rasmussem Corp. produces.  (Of course, any gaming company that had things go wrong as often as they seem to go wrong for Rasmussem, would probably have been sued out of business.)  Still, I wanted to do another book involving their total immersion technnology, but figured I'd done the player-accidentally-gets-caught-in-the-game thing twice already.  It was my husband Jim who suggested the variation of "Well, what if someone chooses not to leave the game."

"But that would be suicide," I said.

Hmmm...

Thank you, Jim.

Excerpt

Mr. Kroll pulled out a piece of paper in a clear plastic bag hand-labeled EVIDENCE.

Evidence?  Like from courts and trials and cop shows?  What kind of trouble was Emily in?

The note was in my sister's neat rounded penmanship.  It said:

     Not anybody's fault.
     This is MY idea.

While the word evidence had set off all sorts of alarm bells in my head, now I think my body temperature dropped ten degrees.

Emily had chosen to go into a game and not come out? 
Why?

This was so weird, so...more than weird.  I couldn't even tell what I should be thinking.

I saw Ms. Bennett looking at me, waiting for me to realize she was looking at me.  She said, "We're hoping she'll listen to you."

Me?  Somehow this was coming down to
me?

"I think it's insane," Mom said.  "First one of my daughters gets stuck in their crazy game; then they want my other daughter to just step right in after her."

In the movies, the good guys always fight each other for the opportunity to do the dangerous stuff.  The Rasmussem people were saying this wasn't dangerous.  And still the responsibility was enough to freeze me solid.

Mrs. Overstreet, as a principal in charge of her students' safety, said to me, "Grace, you don't have to do this if you don't want to."

For the first time in my life, I wanted to hug her.

"No," Ms. Bennett agreed.  "Of course she doesn't have to.  But there's no reason she shouldn't.  It's not like we're asking her to donate a kidney or something."

Suddenly we were into donating body parts?

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While Deadly Pink is a companion piece to

User Unfriendly

and Heir Apparent,

 

which have been given great new covers that show all three go together, I do believe that Deadly Pink is for a slightly older audience, which is why I have included it in the BOOKS FOR TEENS section, while User Unfriendly and Heir Apparent are in the BOOKS FOR 8 - 14 YEAR OLDS section.

A note about sequels: Link to Sequels

 

Deadly Pink -- Chinese edition

A peek inside:

(written from back to front...)

 

(up and down, and with pictures)