TITLE: Regina Brinkwell & the Truth Brigade
GENRE: Middle Grade
Sick of adults being big fat liars, twelve-year-old Regina Brinkwell fills her community service requirement with a spirited honesty campaign using picket lines to target businesses, teachers, and more. When she uncovers a blackmailing scandal and heartbreaking secret involving people close to her, she must find the courage to tell some very ugly truths or her school will be cheated out of thousands of dollars.
Regina Brinkwell sat at a corner table in the lunchroom and watched her best friend devour a combination of peanut butter, banana, pickle, and marshmallow fluff. A blob of snot-colored goo splattered the paper he was reading. She nibbled on a fingernail, waiting for Skippy's reaction.
"What's this again?" he asked, studying the neat row of names.
"A list of all the lying grown-ups in the town of Fredalia. What do you think?"
"Um, I don't think bugging them counts as community service."
"Well, it should." She wrinkled her nose at the fishy odor coming from her cafeteria tuna melt. It stunk almost as bad as the peanut-pickle disaster. "Listen--adults have had the upper hand forever. When I was five, Dad said he was taking me to the playground and we went to the doctor's office for shots instead. Lots of shots, Skippy--painful shots that the doctor said wouldn't hurt a bit."
Skippy rolled his eyes and kept chewing. "You've gotta do better than that."
"Okay, what about that creepy clown at Sarah Graber's party in third grade?"
"Oh, yeah, yeah. He had that trick dog who was supposed to do flips."
Regina nodded, grabbing his forearm. "Exactly. That fat dog couldn't have flipped for a cookie if its life depended on it." She ignored a few stares. She was used to people thinking she and Skippy were boyfriend and girlfriend, which was ridiculous. Nobody should have a boyfriend if they still wear a retainer.