Chasing Boys, by Karen Tayleur

He gave me a smile that warmed me down to my feet and then he was gone. The entire female population of the class sighed. Possibly not only the females.
And that’s when I knew – you know – that it was him. He was the reason I was going to get out of bed each morning.

Ariel (El) Marini is not happy when she has to change schools, but on her first day she meets Eric Callahan and decides life is worth living. Next she meets Margot and Desi and they become her best friends. So with a boy to love and friend to hang out with, why is El still not happy?

When a new boy starts at the school, El is not impressed. Gaston is different and draws incredible pictures for El, but he’s really not her type. But Gaston’s arrival signals changes for El and her friends. Suddenly everyone around her seems to be moving on, while EL is standing still.

Chasing Boys is a poignant yet funny story about teenage angst, friendship and family. El is dealing with normal teen problems of crushes and friendships, whilst also up against much bigger issues, including a mysteriously absent father, and the financial problems which have led to the family downsizing their house and El having to leave her last school. Told in a fresh first person voice, Chasing Boys is fun but definitely not light and fluffy.

Chasing Boys, by Karen Tayleur
Black Dog Books, 2007