Olivia Twisted is the story of teen hackers who are playing Robin Hood. We have an exclusive excerpt and book trailer to get you ready for the November 5 release.
He tilts my chin up so my eyes meet his, his thumb brushing lightly across my lips. I close my eyes. I know Z is trouble. I know that being with him is going to get me into trouble. I don’t care.
At least at this moment, I don’t care.
Tossed from foster home to foster home, Olivia’s seen a lot in her sixteen years. She’s hardened, sure, though mostly just wants to fly under the radar until graduation. But her natural ability with computers catches the eye of Z, a mysterious guy at her new school. Soon, Z has brought Liv into his team of hacker elite—break into a few bank accounts, and voila, he drives a motorcycle. Follow his lead, and Olivia might even be able to escape from her oppressive foster parents. As Olivia and Z grow closer, though, so does the watchful eye of Bill Sykes, Z’s boss. And he’s got bigger plans for Liv…
I can picture Liv’s face: wide-eyed, trusting. Her smooth lips that taste like strawberry Fanta.
It was just a kiss. That’s all. She’s just like any other girl.
Except that she’s not.
Thanks to Z, Olivia’s about to get twisted.
Release date: November 5, 2013
Loud cheers erupt from somewhere in the back of the house. “Is there a party?” I ask Z.
He laughs. “Nope. But there’s a pretty cool competition going on right now. Want to check it out?”
“What kind of competition?”
“You’ll see. I think you’ll find it very interesting.”
He leads me to a large room in the back of the house. A few computers line the far wall, but in the middle of the room, four laptops are set up around a large round table. There are two guys and two girls sitting at the table, one at each computer, and a bunch of kids are behind them, yelling back and forth at one another. A couple of people smack Z’s hand in welcome, but no one seems to notice me.
“What’s going on?” I yell to him over the rowdy crowd. They’re getting louder, and the four around the computer are fixated on their screens, their eyes moving back and forth and fingers typing frantically.
Z leans close to speak in my ear. “It’s a hacking competition. They’re seeing who can get in the fastest.”
“Not sure. It’s different each time.”
I peer over a shoulder at the girl nearest me as her fingers tap the keys so fast they almost blur. The excitement in the room is reaching a fevered pitch, when the guy on the opposite side of the table punches the button on a small silver bell and yells, “Done!” I take a deep breath to try to slow my racing heart. I’ve heard of these before, or maybe I saw it in a movie, but I never knew anyone who actually participated in one.
Sam appears from within the throng of people to peer closely at his screen, and other people press in closer. I guess Sam’s the moderator, which is interesting because she doesn’t seem serious enough for that.
She grimaces. “Jose is the winner.”
Everyone cheers, with the exception of the kids who lost, and papers begin switching hands with lightning speed. Not paper—money. Betting on the winner. The theme song fromDr. Who is playing while the transactions take place. I’ve never been to Vegas, but I imagine it’s a lot like this.
“Sometimes these are tougher than others,” Z says. “Jose wins a lot. Never when I’m playing, of course.”
The girl in front of me, whose display I’d been watching, leans forward, head in her hands. I’d be upset, too.
“I could do that,” I tell Z. Of course, I’m speaking much louder than normal to be heard over the crowd, and it’s at that exact time that the noise dies down so everyone can hear my bold words. The other kids turn and stare at me, and I can feel my cheeks turning red. Crap.
The guy named Jose huffs and looks me up and down as if I’m a child who got misdirected in the search for the playroom. “Really, niña? You think you could take me? Ha.”
Oh, no he didn’t just say that. “Doesn’t look like much of a challenge to me.”
It’s quiet for the space of a heartbeat, then the shouts start up again, even louder than before. Several hands push me forward and the girl at the nearest laptop stands up, half smiling as if she feels sorry for me. I sit in her chair and wait as the people place their bets. My stomach starts to churn.
“You can do this,” Z leans down to murmur in my ear.
I feel incredibly shaky—whether it’s from the anticipation, the fear, or the excitement of Z’s warm breath tickling my skin, I’m not sure. I look across at Jose, who’s running his hands through his long black hair. He doesn’t look nervous; in fact, he grins at me like we’re just talking about school or something. Cocky. I just nod shortly without smiling.
“Game on,” I say loudly.
About the author
Vivi Barnes was raised on a farm in East Texas where her theater-loving mom and cowboy dad gave her a unique perspective on life. Now living in the magic and sunshine of Orlando, Florida, she divides her time writing, working, goofing off with her husband and three kids, and avoiding dirty dishes.