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Simmone Howell is an award-winning short story writer and screenwriter. Her short film Pity24 was awarded the 2004 AWGIE for Short Film Screenplay by the Australian Writers’ Guild. The film has played festivals all over the world. Simmone's fiction has been published in journals and anthologies including the Barcelona Review and 3am Magazine. Notes From the Teenage Underground is Simmone’s debut novel.
This novel is so tuned in to the teenage psyche - sharp, full of humour and a touch subversive - that it's hard to believe it's not written by one. In fact it comes from the pen of Simmone Howell whose Notes from the Teenage Underground was published in 2008 and garnered impressive reviews. Everything Beautiful tells the story of Riley, atheist and all-round rebel who has been tricked by her father and his irritating new girlfriend into spending her summer at a spiritual holiday camp. Here she meets recent paraplegic Dylan who like Riley is hell-bent on turning the camp upside, until that is she has a life-changing experience. If you enjoyed this then check out Simmone's debut novel Notes From the Teenage Underground.
Things quickly get out of hand when three seventeen-year-old girls decide to go ‘underground’. Being “extreme, debauched, anti-establishment and revolutionary” is all very well but where will it lead? And what about the boys they meet on the way? A witty and insightful look at teenage relationships and their never ending complexities. If you enjoyed this then check out Simmone's second novel Everything Beautiful.
When Riley's Dad gets a new girlfriend, life turns upside down for Riley. She doesn't like Norma and Norma doesn't like her. But it is not until Riley finds herself shipped off to 'camp' that she realises just how bad things have become. Determined to continue on her path of bad behaviour and general obnoxiousness, Riley Rose is sure that she can turn this 'spiritual camp' upside down. And when she meets Dylan Luck, recent paraplegic, she thinks she has found a fellow troublemaker. What follows is a very surprising week for Riley. Truths are told and secrets revealed, and sex, cigarettes and booze prove to be a potent cocktail, but in the end Riley has learnt quite a lot about herself, Dylan and exactly why she appeared hell-bent on self-destruction.
Taking their anti-social edge one step further, seventeen year old Gem and her friends Mira and Lo have decided to go 'underground'. Their activities will be 'extreme', 'anti-establishment', 'avant-garde' and 'debauched'. While Gem makes an underground film and Mira sets about pursuing 'boys-without-barcodes' no one knows what it is that Lo - the most subversive of the three - has planned. But in the back of her mind, Gem's worried. She feels the balance of the trio's friendship is always weighted against her. And as the weeks draw closer to Christmas, appearances start to deceive and relationships flounder. For all the promise of the group, Underground seems a dark place to be. It will take great films, bad poetry and a pantheon of inspirational guides - from Andy Warhol to Germaine Greer - to help Gem work out the true meaning of friendship, where family fits in, and that the best parts of life aren't always underground.