Excerpt from Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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Life As We Knew It

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Life As We Knew It
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  • First Published:
    Oct 2006, 352 pages
    May 2008, 360 pages

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May 7

Lisa is pregnant.

Dad called around 11 o’clock to let us know. Only Mom had already taken Jonny to his baseball practice and of course Matt isn’t home from college yet, so I was alone to get the big news.

“The baby is due in December,” Dad crowed, like he was the first guy in the history of the world with a younger second wife about to have a baby. “Isn’t that great! You’re going to have a little brother or sister. Of course it’s too soon to tell what it’s going to be, but as soon as we know, we’ll tell you. I wouldn’t mind another daughter myself. The first one I had turned out so wonderfully. How’d you like a baby sister?”

I had no idea. “When did you find out?” I asked.

“Yesterday afternoon,” Dad said. “I would have called you right away but, well, we celebrated. You can understand that, can’t you, honey? A little private time for Lisa and me before letting the world know.”

“Of course, Daddy,” I said. “Has Lisa told her family?”

“First thing this morning,” he replied. “Her parents are thrilled. Their first grandchild. They’re coming for a couple of weeks in July, before you and Jonny visit.”

“Are you going to call Matt and tell him?” I asked. “Or do you want me to?”

“Oh no, I’ll call,” Dad said. “He’s busy studying for his finals. He’ll be glad for the interruption.”

“It’s great news, Dad,” I said, because I knew I was supposed to. “Be sure to tell Lisa how happy I am for her. And you, too. For both of you.”

“You tell her yourself,” Dad said. “Here she is.”

Dad muffled the phone for a second so he could whisper something to Lisa and then she took the phone. “Miranda,” she said. “Isn’t it exciting!”

“Very,” I said. “It’s wonderful news. I’m really happy for you and Dad.”

“I was thinking,” she said. “Well, I know it’s way too soon and I haven’t even discussed this with your father yet, but would you like to be the baby’s godmother? You don’t have to answer right away, but do think about it, all right?”

That’s the problem I have with Lisa. Whenever I want to get mad at her, or just irritated because she really can be immensely irritating, she goes and does something nice. And then I can understand why Daddy married her.

“Of course I’ll think about it,” I said. “You and Daddy think about it also.”

“We don’t have to give it any more thought,” she said. “You should see the glow on your father’s face. I don’t think he could be any happier.”

“I couldn’t,” Dad said, and I could tell from his laughter that he’d grabbed the phone away from Lisa. “Miranda, please say yes. It would mean so much to us for you to be the baby’s godmother.”

So I said yes. I couldn’t exactly say no.

After that we chatted for a while. I told Dad about my last swim meet and how I was doing in school. Mom still hadn’t come back by the time I finally got off the phone, so I went online to see what’s new with figure skating. The hot topic at Brandon Erlich’s fan site is how good his chances are to win Olympic gold. Most people think not very, but a lot of us think he has a real shot at medaling and ice is slippery and you never know.

I think I’d like to take skating lessons again. I’ve missed it the past couple of years and besides, it’ll give me a chance to pick up news about Brandon. He isn’t being coached by Mrs. Daley anymore, but I bet she still hears stuff. And maybe Brandon’s mother would show up at the rink.

Excerpted from Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer. Copyright © 2006 by Susan Beth Pfeffer. Excerpted by permission of Harcourt Trade Publishers. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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