Keep Me Posted!

Sign me up for the latest news from Penguin Teen, including new books, special offers, and promotions.

COVER REVEAL: The Best Laid Plans (+ an exclusive excerpt & interview with the author!)

SHARE

WE HAVE EXCITING NEWS.

Cameron Lund’s irresistible (not to mention HILARIOUS) debut is coming in April, 2020 AND WE HAVE THE COVER! Get ready for THE BEST LAID PLANS!

The Best Laid Plans is the adorable modern high school rom-com we all need in our lives. Meet eighteen-year-old Keely Collins, who is determined to change her status as the last virgin standing. Problem is, she’s known all the boys in her small high school forever, and it’s kinda hard to be into a guy when you watched him eat crayons in kindergarten. So she can’t believe her luck when she meets a ridiculously hot new guy named Dean. Not only does he look like he’s fallen out of a classic movie poster, but he drives a motorcycle, flirts with ease, and might actually be into her.

But Dean’s already in college, and Keely is convinced he’ll drop her if he finds out how inexperienced she is. That’s when she talks herself into a new plan: her lifelong best friend, Andrew, would never hurt or betray her, and he’s clearly been with enough girls that he can show her the ropes before she goes all the way with Dean.
Of course, the plan only works if Andrew and Keely stay friends–just friends–so things are about to get complicated.

Okay, and yes, we know you have to wait until April BUT we have a few surprises up our sleeves. First of all, CHECK OUT THIS AMAZING COVER.

The Best Laid Plans

 

SO SO CUTE.

But, like we said, we have a couple more surprises. Not only has author Cameron Lund offered to answer our questions, but she’s giving us a sneak peek of the book! Everyone, meet Cameron!

Cameron Lund cropped_Kirsten Getchell

Photo by Kirsten Getchell

 

  • What was your absolute favorite part about writing The Best Laid Plans? A favorite scene you can’t wait for people to read? 

I wanted to write a book that was true to who I was in high school. I was going to parties, I was timidly starting to break the rules, I was talking about sex a lot with my friends and feeling anxious about the ways I did and didn’t measure up. As a girl it’s really hard to win. You’re either having too much sex, or not enough sex—sometimes even at the same time. I wanted to explore these pressures in a way that was still fun and lighthearted. But also I am a huge sucker for romance. I am all about the sexual tension. I just love writing those scenes where characters are kissing but maybe they’re not supposed to be kissing, or maybe they’re with the wrong person, or they want to be with someone so badly but they’re standing in their own way. The Best Laid Plans has a ton of that. For me it’s all about the build up; the almost. Being so close to what or who you want and not being able to have it. Maybe I’m a little mean to my characters. Let’s just say there is moment in a bathtub that I had a lot of fun with.

 

  • Word on the street is you’re a musician! Does music influence your writing at all?

Yes! I am a singer/songwriter and have played the violin almost my whole life, so music influences pretty much everything I do. The songs I write are mini stories. Sometimes I won’t personally have the emotion behind something I want to sing about, so I will imagine a character and how she would feel if she got her heart broken in a specific way, and I’ll write about that. There are a few songs on my website that have a bit of Keely’s emotions in them. It’s a way that I can fully connect to a character on a deeper level. I also use music to get into the vibe of a scene I’m writing. In The Best Laid Plans, for example, there’s a slow-dancing scene at prom that I wrote while listening to this one song by the Smiths over and over and over again.

 

  • QUICK! Casting time! If The Best Laid Plans were a movie, who would you cast in the lead roles?

Oh man, I know we are all on the Noah Centineo hype train right now, but I think he’d make a great Dean. He’s got swagger. Andrew is more of a Tom Holland–he’s charming and goofy and more of a cinnamon roll. I think for our girl Keely, maybe Lili Reinhart would do a good job—she’s got the awkward, the sweet, and the sass down as Betty in Riverdale.

 

  • If you could spend the day hanging out with one character from The Best Laid Plans, who would it be? Why??

Ooo this is a fun one! I think I’m similar to Keely in a lot of ways, so I would probably hang out with Andrew since he’s her best friend. More specifically, I would hang out with Party Andrew—that’s her nickname for him when she’s annoyed with him at parties—but personally I think he would be a ton of fun. We could eat pizza and drink stupid watermelon drinks and watch an old movie and I’d be a happy camper.

 

  • We may have taken a sneak peek of the excerpt already and it sure seems like Andrew and Keely are adorably close. OBVIOUSLY there has to be a little something more than “just friends” going on between Andrew and Keely, right?? Tell us more, pretty please?

Welllll, they will insist to you that they are just friends, so that’s all I will say! Andrew is always hooking up with different girls from school and Keely is so fine with that—although she does have a bad habit of thinking she’s a little better than those girls that she needs to work on. But Keely and Andrew have known each other forever because their parents are best friends, so their closeness comes from years of comfortability. As Keely says at one point in the book, Andrew has seen her at her weakest, her grossest, and her sweatiest and he’s stuck by her. Right before this excerpt, Andrew has just gotten in trouble for a birthday party he threw Keely while his parents were away on a ski trip. When the parents got home, they found a condom wrapper someone at the party left behind, and assumed it belonged to Andrew and Keely—so clearly even his parents think there’s something there! But really, they are just friends. For real.

 

EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT? You bet! Check it out below!

 

“We probably should have just let them believe it,” Andrew says later. We’re slumped in the hammock in his backyard, cocooned in a pile of coats to keep warm. It’s still a little too cold to be outside, but the thought of being in the same house with our parents after everything that’s just happened is too unpleasant. “They didn’t even seem mad when they thought it was ours.” He pushes his leg against the ground so that the hammock begins to swing. “If I knew they were gonna flip about the party, I would have just gone with it, you know?”

So our parents are making us get part-time jobs through the rest of the year. They’re disappointed we’re not being, in their words, trustworthy or dependable, and they think getting jobs will help teach us discipline. Which is messed up. It’s not like I’ve never worked. I spent my last two miserable summers bagging groceries at the local market, making awkward chitchat with all my parents’ friends when they came by the register. Andrew is the one who’s reckless, who acts impulsively, who jumps off cliffs with his eyes closed. I’m the one who’s always waiting at the bottom with the safety net.

This is the last semester of senior year. Last year when I was stressed about homework and the SATs, freaking out about getting into college, I was always so envious of the seniors who got to goof off, joking with teachers and skipping class like it didn’t matter. But I was just waiting for my turn. I knew one day I’d be able to float through the hallways too like I’d already finished. Now our parents are taking that away.

Not to mention these are my last few months with Andrew and Hannah.

“I can’t believe I’m in trouble too when it wasn’t even my party.” I pull a coat tighter around me to stay warm.

“Your birthday, your party,” he answers. “Besides, you’re an accessory to the crime. When you see a crime being committed and say nothing, that makes you responsible.”

“I’m not responsible, remember? I’m untrustworthy and undisciplined.”

“Yeah, you’re pretty terrible,” he agrees.

The sky is a bright gray, giving the illusion that we’re in a cloud. The bare branches of the trees above us stretch out like fingers. Inside the house, the windows are lit up by warm light. I can see Andrew’s mom emptying the dishwasher in the kitchen.

“That was weird earlier,” I say. “I can’t believe they thought we were . . . we . . .” I can’t say it, can’t get my mouth to wrap around the words. Instead, I laugh, shoving him slightly with my shoulder under the pile of coats. “Your mom clearly hasn’t met Party Andrew.”

“Let’s hope my mom never meets Party Andrew,” he says, shoving me back.

“Party Andrew eats bacon,” I say. “She’d be horrified.”

“Yeah. That’s the part that would make her the maddest.” He laughs, snuggling into my shoulder like a cat. “C’mon, Collins, you wouldn’t date me?”

“Oh, are you done with Cecilia?” I ask, pursing my lips. “And Susie Palmer? And Sophie Piznarski? And—”

“All right,” he says. “Point made.”

“It’s a moot point really.” I push us again with my foot so the hammock keeps swinging. “We all know you’re gonna make little blonde babies with Cecilia. Little Sally and Bobby.”

“You named them?”

“You named them, Andrew. In the future. I’m just reporting back. Sally loves manicures, lip gloss, and binge drinking, by the way. Just like her mother.”

“You’re so weird.”

“She’s an adorable kid.”

He laughs and soon I’m laughing too, our shoulders shaking so hard the hammock shakes too. I take a deep, gulping breath, trying to regain control, and suddenly I snort. Andrew hears and loses it.

“No, really,” he says between choked laughter. “You’re the adorable one. The sounds that come from your body are just so cute.”

“You know what’s cute?” I snort again before I can stop myself. “Hearing you say the word condom in front of our parents. I think that’ll be seared into my brain forever.”

“Really?” he asks. “I could have called it a ‘rubber’ and that would have been worse.”

“A little raincoat,” I say.

“Hey—a big raincoat,” he says back, and we both burst out laughing again.

 

The Best Laid Plans is hitting shelves in April, 2020! 

 

 

 

 

 

Miss the books coming out this month? Check them out here!

#WhatsTrending

This Spell Can’t Last by Isabel Sterling is coming!

Exciting prequel news! If you fell under Isabel Sterling’s spell in These Witches Don’t Burn and are already highly anticipating This Coven Won’t Break this May, prepare yourself. Author Isabel Sterling has a prequel e-novella up her sleeves! Get ready for This Spell Can’t Last (omg that title, right?!) Hannah and Veronica battle a Blood Witch in the thrilling, heartbreaking e-novella prequel to These … Continued
See More

Excerpt alert: THE KINGDOM OF BACK

We really need to talk about The Kingdom of Back by Marie Lu. Because, honestly? It’s not just going to steal your heart, but it’s going to take it into a mythical land that’s so magical you won’t want to take it back. IT’S THAT GOOD. But on with the excerpt. The Kingdom of Back is … Continued
See More

Try Not to Swoon Challenge: YA’s Steamiest Romances 😍

Alright, folks. Prepare to swoon. We’re counting down some of YA’s absolute swooniest romances of all time. Kicking us off…   Warcross by Marie Lu *cough* hot tub scene *cough*   Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera Juliet falling in love with a cute librarian named Kira was sort of the best. Also? Kira rides … Continued
See More

What to read after watching Netflix’s TIGER KING

The show was wild from beginning to end as we followed the story of Joe Exotic (or as we all know him: The Tiger King). From insane zoo stories to questionable murder mysteries, Penguin Teen’s got the purr-fect reads after you’ve finished watching Netflix’s latest true crime series docuseries.   The Small Crimes of Tiffany … Continued
See More

We asked readers to send in their favorite quotes from books. Here’s what they said…

We asked readers to send in their favorite quotes from books. Here’s what they said! “Some infinities are bigger than other infinities” – John Green, The Fault in Our Stars     “It isn’t what we say or think that defines us, but what we do.” – Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility  “Once there was, … Continued
See More

Excerpt Alert: TIME OF OUR LIVES

In case you are a fan of #Wibbroka (adorable author couple that is Austin Siegemund-Broka & Emily Wibberley) or just generally a fan of romance books that will absolutely win your heart, stick around. We’re revealing an excerpt for Wibbroka’s upcoming release Time of Our Lives! Scroll down to start reading/falling in love. FITZ When I … Continued
See More

Hey Netflix, you should probably get started on these 7 books

Already binge-watched basically everything good on Netflix at this point? Same. And it got us thinking…there are some books Netflix really needs to read, because they would be AMAZING on screen. So, here are our top 7!   The Queen’s Assassin by Melissa de la Cruz A blood oath, an assassin, and a kingdom under … Continued
See More

Do’s and Don’t for encountering a vampire: things YA taught us

Let’s face it: we all have a soft spot for the eternally damned. YA made us love vampires and we aren’t sorry about it. HOWEVER, our favorite books have ALSO taught us that there are certain things to do and not do if you encounter a handsome broody potentially blood-thirsty character. At no. 1…   1. DO … Continued
See More

7 Books To Read During Sexual Assault Awareness Month

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and we’re committed to helping keep the conversation going all month long. We find that books can often help us talk about difficult topics – so here are 7 books to help you start a conversation.   SHOUT by Laurie Halse Anderson Bestselling author Laurie Halse Anderson is known for … Continued
See More

8 things you DIDN’T know about Four Dead Queens

Author Astrid Scholte is here to tell you 7 things you didn’t know about Four Dead Queens! Four Dead Queens is an enthralling fast-paced royal murder mystery where competing agendas collide with deadly consequences. We hope you enjoy these special easter eggs!   7 things you didn’t know about Four Dead Queens  by Astrid Scholte   Initially there … Continued
See More
BACK TO TOP