The Duke twins, Sydney and Lauren, live the life: They attend the fanciest school in Atlanta, they live in Buckhead, the most exclusive neighborhood, and they only date the hottest guys. And their secrets? Are the darkest of all. When their estranged father is released from prison and a murder is committed, their lives are plunged into a whirlwind of tabloid scrutiny, vicious gossip, and shocking revelation. Lauren, always such a party girl, and Sydney, bent on perfection by way of the Ivy League, can't trust anyone. Not their mother, not their rich stepfather. Maybe not even each other.
This series debut alternates between the perspectives of African-American twin sisters, the overachieving Sydney and (per Sydney's description) "superficial, self-centered, scandalous drama queen" Lauren. The trappings of clique lit are all here: the twins wear designer clothes, attend "the premier, predominantly African-American private institution of learning in the Atlanta area" and are glued to an anonymous blog tracking all the school's gossip. The plot deepens when Sydney starts secretly spending time with the twins' father, recently released from jail, and when Lauren starts dating a cute boy from a bad neighborhood; it gets even fuller-if harder to believe-when the sisters realize their rich stepfather may not actually be a car dealer (Lauren's boyfriend, Jermaine, tells them that "he been running things in the hood Godfather-style for years"). Beyond some outrageous plotting, Millner (The Sistahs' Rules) and Miller (The Angry Black Woman's Guide to Life) offer challenges unique to their African-American characters (Sydney wishes her boyfriend would get off his "all-natural-beauty" soapbox so she could press her hair, while Jermaine tells Lauren he wears expensive sneakers to keep safe on his rough block). These insights earn the authors credibility with their audience, although the glamorous outfits and events-and the mystery surrounding the girls' stepfather-are probably what will keep readers burning through the pages. Ages 14-up. (Apr.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.