Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Page 99 -- Hazel Wetherby & The Elixir of Love by Bill Defelis

An Urban fantasy / thriller for ages 10 & up
By Bill Defelis
Reprinted with Permission: Copyright 2010 By Bill Defelis. All Rights Reserved.

Book Description: Think: ‘Nancy Drew meets Men In Black.’ Thirteen-year-old Hazel has a rough life: two nerdy rocket scientists for parents, a kid brother convinced he’s an alien, and a housekeeper trained by the Spanish Inquisition. But when her parents vanish, the housekeeper turns into small bits of charcoal, and the police only shrug their shoulders, Hazel realizes she’s still got a lot to learn about rough.
As days drag by with no news, Hazel decides she’ll have to find her parents herself. And she’s determined nothing will stop her – not her complete ignorance of how to go about it, not her loony brother’s ravings about evil alien kidnappers, not even the dead guys trying to kill her.
But first she’ll have to join in a race to find something small and red and jolly. Winning that race will be her only chance to save her family. And a lot of other families as well.


As Hazel hemmed and hawed, wondering how much she could safely say and whether the FBI knew anything about the cat, she was saved by the ring of Agent Nero’s cell phone.

He pulled it out and had a brief conversation of grunts and monosyllables.

“I have to go,” he said. “We’ll continue this at three o’clock. And remember, you and your brother.”
With that, he flashed her another smile, thinner than the one he’d come with, and left.

Five minutes later, Luella arrived. Hazel quickly brought her up to speed on everything since they’d parted last night.

“Now,” said Hazel. “I gotta get over to Darien.”

“Hazel, you are totally insane! After Mrs. Haggis, and your parents, and now someone breaking into your house and doing godknowswhat? What does it take to get you to realize that whatever’s going on, it’s dangerous. Deadly dangerous.”

Nothing stiffens the resolve like having your sanity challenged. Her fears about going to Darien vanished as she rattled off the many excellent (in her mind) reasons why she had nothing to worry about: no one had a reason to hurt her, she’d be following Ms. Wonderly from a distance, it was broad daylight in a nice neighborhood, she’d have Mr. E with her, etc, etc.

“At least let me go with you,” tried Luella.


“What if I could get Sid and Hymie to go with you? Hymie may not be worth much, but at least he’s big enough to look like some protection.”

“No. I’m going to Darien, alone. I need you at the office.”

“What on Earth for?”

“Because if Ms. Wonderly came looking for me there, someone else might too.”

And that was true, though not the way Hazel intended.


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