WINNER of the 2012 NATIONAL INDIE EXCELLENCE BOOK AWARD for YOUNG ADULT FICTION
The Legend of L’Esprit
Lights flicker and strains of piano music linger as shadows glide eerily past the second story windows of Chicago’s premier L’Esprit Dance Studios. The illusive fragrance of lilacs follows 15-year-old dancer, Libby Nobleton, who just aced her audition. While innocently pursuing her dreams, rumors surface that the historic landmark housing L’Esprit is haunted. Libby’s world quickly turns into a nightmare when the abandoned elevator menacingly beckons and she alone is tormented by unearthly events. The chilling words whispered in the dark, “she deserves to die,” convince Libby the ghost is real and it’s out to get her.
With friends, C.C. and Brooke, Libby searches the Tribune archives for answers to her connection to the legendary studio. L’Esprit, they learn, rose from the ashes of the Grand Dalton House Theatre’s unexplained fire in 1926, rebuilt by handsome millionaire, A.J. Dalton. A phantom’s chase through ĽEsprit’s forbidden basement ends when the trio stumbles upon dance idol, Daniella Devereaux’s antique trunk and the long lost statue of ĽEsprit. Reaching beyond the grave, the prima’s diary reveals her inspirational life and love for A.J. Past and present worlds collide when Brooke falls hopelessly ill, and Libby, guided by Daniella’s spirit, takes a hellish elevator ride through time. The same ride her favorite teacher started as a teenager but never finished. Libby must painfully witness Daniella’s death to discover someone everyone once trusted still lives with the darkest of secrets. Libby must impart the truth or die trying.
Chasing the Spotlight
Chicago’s top dancers from L’Esprit Studios travel to New York City to attend the annual Stairway to the Stars national dance convention. While enjoying touristy thrills and the excitement of competition, a top contender for the title of female dancer of the year is secretly stalked and mysteriously disappears moments before the most important performance of her life. But not before another dancer vanishes in a case of mistaken identity putting everyone on heightened alert.
As an instant romance develops between Libby Nobleton and Daniel Landry, L.A.’s top-ranked male competitor, C.C. Cunningham meets her celebrity crush, hip hop instructor, Zach Dugan. The teenage couples’s intense attraction for one another is soon overshadowed by growing rumors concerning the announcement of the disturbing convention drama. While Libby holds hands with Danny in Times Square, his ex-girlfriend, Mercedes Slade, sweeps onto the scene like a dark cloud. Daughter of divorced parents, one a mega Hollywood talent agent and the other Broadway’s brightest star, Mercedes, driven by the lethal combination of fame obsession empowered by entitlement, devises the perfect plan to win back their full attention, the crown, and Danny’s heart. While chasing the spotlight, she enlists the help of a desperate wannabe actor who will stop at nothing to do her dirty work.
Who will win the competition and who will survive the night?