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Excerpt and Giveaway: The Obvious Game by Rita Arens



“Everyone trusted me back then. Good old, dependable Diana. Which is why most people didn’t notice at first.”

“Your shirt is yellow.”

“Your eyes are blue.”

“You have to stop running away from your problems.”

“You’re too skinny.”

Fifteen-year-old Diana Keller accidentally begins teaching The Obvious Game to new kid Jesse on his sixteenth birthday. As their relationship deepens, Diana avoids Jesse’s past with her own secrets — which she’ll protect at any cost. 



She picked up the first dress, a tight sheath of sequins that poofed into a mermaid-like fin at the bottom. It was blood red, and the color stood out in sharp contrast to her tanned skin. She leaned over and dug through her purse, producing a ponytail holder. “I’m wearing my hair up this year. Are you?”

I looked in the mirror, meaning to study my hair, but all I saw were my thighs compressed into shiny sausages by the underwear. “I haven’t thought about it. Do you think it makes that big a difference?”

Amanda knitted her eyebrows at me. “Of course it matters, Diana. Have I taught you nothing?”

I laughed. “You’ve taught me nothing.”

“Whatever. What do you think?” She pulled her hair up off her face, her clavicles popping against the straps of the dress. She turned to the side, svelte, perfect.

“It’s amazing.” I meant it. She looked glorious. Sometimes it was hard not to feel bad for Amanda for never getting her own TV show. She’d grow out of this perfection here in Snowden without anyone important ever seeing it. Amanda really needed Hollywood, not southwestern Iowa.

Praise for The Obvious Game:

“I couldn’t put down The Obvious Game. Arens perfectly captures the hunger, pain and uncertainty of adolescence.” — Ann Napolitano, author of A GOOD HARD LOOK and WITHIN ARM’S REACH

“THE OBVIOUS GAME is a fearless, honest, and intense look into the psychology of anorexia. The characters—especially Diana–are so natural and emotionally authentic that you’ll find yourself yelling at the page even as you’re compelled to turn it.” — Coert Voorhees, author of LUCKY FOOLS and THE BROTHERS TORRES

“Let’s be clear about one thing: there’s nothing obvious about The Obvious Game. Arens has written a moving, sometimes heart-breaking story about one girl’s attempt to control the uncontrollable. You can’t help but relate to Diana and her struggles as you delve into this gem of a novel.” — Risa Green, author of THE SECRET SOCIETY OF THE PINK CRYSTAL BALL

Book Information:

Publisher: Inkspell Publishing

Release Date: Feb 7th, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-9856562-7-0 (ebook), 978-0-9856562-8-7 (Paperback)

Paperback Price: $13.99

E-book: $4.99

To be available at all major online outlets: Amazon, B&N, The Book Depository


Giveaway open for US, UK and Canada

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

About The Author:


Rita Arens is the author of The Obvious Game and the editor of the award-winning parenting anthology Sleep Is for the Weak. She writes the popular blog Surrender, Dorothy ( and lives in Kansas City with her husband and daughter. The Obvious Game is her first young adult novel. She is at work on a second.

Rita has been a featured speaker at BlogHer 2012, BEA Bloggers Conference 2012, BlogHer Writers 2011, BlogHer 2011, Blissdom 2011, Alt Summit 2010, BlogHer 2010, BlogHer 2008 and BlogHer 2009, the 2008 Kansas City Literary Festival and 2009 Chicks Who Click and appeared on the Walt Bodine Show in 2008.

She’s been quoted by Bloomberg Businessweek, The Associated Press, Forbes Woman, the Wall Street Journal, Businessweek and Businessweek Online and featured in Breathe magazine, Get Your Biz Savvy, The Kansas City Star (archived material available on request), Today Moms (Today Show blog) and Ink KC.

Website/blog: or

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Pinterest   |   Amazon   |   Goodreads

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