Jess Vallance works as a freelance writer specialising in educational materials and has written articles on everything from business accounting to embalming a body. Jess lives in Brighton.
The Yellow Room: If you receive a letter telling you your father has died, what do you do? Anna’s father left when she was very young and Anna, now 16, is living with her ambitious, unemotional, scientist mother. Then she receives a letter from her father’s current girlfriend, Edie, with some shocking news: her father has died. Edie would like to meet Anna because she has something for her from her father. Anna’s friends think Edie is not to be trusted and that she should steer clear. But Anna is drawn to Edie: her warmth, her character, her ability to rustle up delicious meals, all of which it seems her own mother is seemingly incapable of… and the way she can tell Edie the secret that is buried inside her, that she cannot bring herseft to tell her mother or her best friends.
Birdy: Frances Bird has been a loner for so long that she’s given up on ever finding real friendship. But then she’s asked to show a new girl around school, and she begins to think her luck could finally be changing. Eccentric, talkative and just a little bit posh, Alberta is not at all how Frances imagined a best friend could be. But the two girls click immediately, and it’s not long before they are inseparable. Frances could not be happier. As the weeks go on, Frances finds out more about her new best friend – her past, her secrets, her plans for the future – and she starts to examine their friendship more closely. Is it, perhaps, just too good to be true?