PRETENDERS: PAYOFFS AND PLAYLISTS. A Spoiler Alert Exclusive.

The cover for the advanced reader copy.

Due to the tragic and untimely death of my Pretenders series, the character who leaked the private journals of five students was never revealed. Until now…

While all five had their reasons, only one of them did it. This character was male. He pretended to be emancipated from his parents because his family’s business (they made tampons) caused him to be bullied in the past. So a very wealthy Daniel Ponowitz became Jagger–the cool street urchin.

As the story progressed, Jagger and Audri became an item. The struggle to conceal his identity intensified. At the end of book 2 (the last one published), Jagger discovered that his father was having an affair with Audri’s mother. In “Fake It To The Limit” (the unpublished book 3) Jagger is conflicted. He has this terrible information about his dad, but confronting him might expose his true identity to Audri. So he picks fights with him instead. One of these fights was going to lead to Jagger saying, “I’d rather be homeless than live with you!”  And his father, calling his son’s bluff, would say, “Go for it!”

So Jagger would be homeless for real. Emergency VISA canceled.

Life on the streets would be brutal and Jagger would realize he’s not cut out for this. On one particularly cold and hungry night, Jagger goes to a homeless shelter. The company that donates food and blankets happens to be his father’s. He realizes that people aren’t always what they seem. His father isn’t all bad. He’s done some good too. With this realization, he returns home with a new sense of respect for the family business. He feels terrible for being ashamed of them. For lying about his identity. For deceiving so many people just to be popular.

Leaking the journals becomes Jagger/Dan’s way of absolving his guilt. Leaking everyone else’s proves he’s not the only liar and cheater. Other people did stupid things to fit in, too. Now he wants to encourage people to be more honest and real. To accept their flaws and the flaws in others.

Fall out from the leaks is bad. Once again, Dan is ostracized. But this time he owns it. And he eventually inspires the other characters to accept themselves for who they aren’t and to be who they are.

So there you have it. I’m bummed I never got to finish the series. I truly think it was my best. Anyway, when I was writing, I switched voices so often I made a playlist for each character to help me get into their heads. For those of you who want to keep the party going…here they are. Ignore the weird numbering. Actually, try to accept it for what it is. 

 

xoxo Lisi

 

Sheridan

1. How To Be A Heartbreaker – Marina and the Diamonds

2. Imagine It Was Us – Jessie Ware

3. Diamonds – Rihanna

4. Give Your Heart a Break – Demi Lovato

5. I Like It – Charlie Xcx

6. Beautiful – Christina Aguilera

7. Young and Beautiful – Lana Del Rey

  1. Blue Jeans – Lana Del Rey
  2. Obsessed – Mariah Carey
  3. 10. All I Want Is Everything – Victoria Justice
  4. 11. Rule The World – Selena Gomez
  5. Popular – Wicked
  6. Defying Gravity – Wicked
  7. Never Alone – Fame
  8. Body Electric – Fame 
  9. High Flying Adored – Evita 
  10. Light My Candle – Rent 
  11. Nothing – Chorus Line
  12. What I did For Love – Chorus Line
  13. Maybe – Annie

Jagger

1. We Are Young – Fun.

2. Lonely Boy – Black Keys

3. Paint It Black – Rolling Stones

4. Someday – The Strokes

5. I’m Waiting for the Man – Velvet Underground

6. I Want to Break Free – Queen

7. The Pretender – Foo Fighters

8. Wonderwall – Oasis

9. Supersoaker – Kings of Leon

10. Fake Empire – The National

11. Somebody to Love – Queen

  1. Sweet Disposition – Temper Trap
  2. Won’t Get Fooled Again – The Who

14. Fascination Street – The Cure

15. Don’t Stand So CLose to Me – The Police

16. How Soon Is Now? – The Smiths

17. Your Touch – Black Keys

18. ‘A-Punk’ – Vampire Weekend

19. Oxford Comma – Vampire Weekend

  1. Trying to Be Cool – Phoenix (secret listening)
  2. Ready to Start – Arcade Fire

Lily 

  1. Cherry Bomb – The Runaways
  2. Skinny Love (Bon Iver cover) – Birdy

3. Oh No – Marina and the Dimaonds

4. Forever – Haim

5. Je T’aime Moi Non Plus – Jane Berkin & Serge Gainsbourg

6. Just Like a Woman (Bob Dylan cover) – Charlotte Gainsbourg

7. Secret Heart – Feist

8. Violently Happy – Bjork

9. Oh! Darling – The Beatles

10. Times They Are A-Changin’ – Bob Dylan

11. Tous les Garçons et les Filles – Françoise Hardy

  1. Run The World (Girls) – Beyonce
  2. Wildest Moments – Jessie Ware
  3. Forget – Lianne La Havas
  4. Femme Fatale – Velvet Underground & Nico
  5. Extraordinary Machine – Fiona Apple
  6. Across the Universe – Fiona Apple
  7. Lose It – Austra

19. Nuclear Season – Charlie XCX

  1. Everybody But Me – Lykke Li
  2. I’ll Kill Her – Soko (iffy lyrical content)
  3. Sleater-Kinney – Modern Girl
  4. Just A Girl – No Doubt
  5. The Mother We Share – CHVRCHES
  6. Your Drums, Your Love (Duke Dumont Remox) – AlunaGeorge
  7. Skeletons (Acoustic Version) or Zero – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  8. Q.U.E.E.N. ft. Erykah Badu – Janelle Monae

Vanessa

1. Meditation and Stress Reduction – Deepak Chopra

  1. What Are the Seven Principles of Manifesting Your Desires – Deepak Chopra
  2. How Gratitude Creates Abundance and Consciousness – Deepak Chopra

3. Green Eyes – Erykah Badu

4. Forget – Lianne La Havas

5. On and On – Erykah Badu

6. At Your Best – Aaliyah

7. Self Hypnosis – Positive Affirmations for a Better Life – The Subliminal Mind

  1. Want U Back – Cher Lloyd
  2. The Shift – From Ambition to Meaning – Wayne Dyer

9. No Scrubs – TLC

10. Bow Down – Beyonce

11. Big Girls Don’t Cry – Fergie

  1. I’m Wide Awake – Katy Perry
  2. How to Get What You Really, Really Want – Wayne Dyer
  3. Stay – Rihanna ft. Mikky Ekko
  4. The A Team (Ed Sheeran cover) – Birdy

16. The Trouble with Love – Kelly Clarkson

17. Bleeding Love – Leona Lewis

18. One Step at a Time – Jordin Sparks

19. Perfect – P!NK

  1. Your Drums, Your Love – AlunaGeorge
  2. You Belong to Me – Taylor Swift
  3. Settle Down -Kimbra

Duffy

1. Find Your Love – Drake

2. Work Hard Play Hard – Wiz Khalifa 

  1. Pursuit of Happiness ft. MGMT – Kid Cudi
  2. Ruffneck – Skrillex
  1. Get Lucky – Daft Punk ft. Pharrell Williams

6. Mirrors – Justin Timberlake (guilty pleasure)

7. Day ‘N’ Night – Kid Cudi

8. Use Somebody – Kings of Leon 

9. Liar – Mumford & Sons

10. The Cave – Mumford & Sons

11. Over – Drake

  1. Holy Grail ft. Justin Timberlake – JAY Z
  2. Forever Young – JAY Z and Mr. Hudson
  3. First of the Year – Skrillex

15. Thrift Shop ft. Wanz – Macklemore and Ryan Lewis

16. Trojans – Atlas Genius

17. Purple Yellow Red & Blue – Portugal. The Man

18. All of the Lights ft. Rihanna & Kid Cudi – Kanye West

19. Somebody That I Used to Know ft. Kimbra – Gotye

20. Out of My Head ft. Trey Songz – Lupe Fiasco

8 Comments

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  • Katie says:

    Oh no! That makes me want to cry! 🙁 🙁 I just finished Book 2 last week… It was an audeobook and the cast did such an amazing job. 🙁 Thanks for updating all of us. Keep writing!

  • Rebecca Rabideau says:

    What happened with all of the relationships? Do Sheridan and Duffy get back together? Do Audri and Jagger stay together after he tells her the truth? Will things be weird for them since their parents are dating? Does lily ever go out with Coop? Does Vanessa end up having a new crush? What happens to her parents? Do they get divorced? Does Octavia get what’s coming to her?! Does Vanessa get expelled for cheating? What is the fallout for everyone now that all of their secrets have been revealed?

  • Zara says:

    Thank you for telling us the end, I am so sorry that you weren’t able to finish and publish the book. I loved it so much in middle school that I read about 3 times over. Also I really loved all the songs in the playlists you chose (especially Jagger & Lily’s!!) I can’t wait to hear about and read your other new works in the future (:

  • Alise says:

    Aww, that makes me pretty sad. Pretenders was a series I loved in 6th and 7th grade, but I had forgotten about it for a bit. I actually just thought about it tonight; I figured with how long it had been, there might be a new book out to read… but alas, the writing world is cruel. I hope your next series gets to see a conclusion, and I’ll go re-read two beat-up books I’ve read a thousand times already.

  • shaila says:

    Thanks , Lisi for filling us in and ending the suspense. I LOVED the Pretenders and was so disappointed when the series ended prematurely.
    Looking forward to the next book.
    Love the playlists!

  • Andrea says:

    I couldn’t comment my guess in your previous post because for some reason i couldn’t access the site BUT ANYWAY–I was correct! Kinda (he was one of my main suspects hehe). It sucks how the series was never continued. I’d always wonder when book 3 would be published or if it was already out and I somehow just missed it. Can’t wait to read your other future projects!

  • Kimberly says:

    I love that Marina and the Diamonds song! OK, my guess was actually wrong! I thought the leaker would have been Vanessa since she wanted good grades so badly. I’m sad your publisher didn’t let you finish the series! Are you working on anything new you can share? 🙂

    • Lisi Harrison says:

      I’m working on a middle grade series. I’m in love with it. I’ll post about it as soon as it’s sold and official. Hopefully another month.

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