“Ayarbe does not shrink from the gritty, depressing reality of twenty-first-century American race and class issues …. Michal emerges as a clear voice in an important conversation. With just enough romance and a fair amount of suspense, this realistic story prompts dialogue about a difficult topic.” – Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)
“Wanted is a well-written, suspenseful, even violent book made more troubling by the authenticity and likability of its characters. Readers will ache as they read this page-turner.” – ALA Booklist
“Teens will be drawn in by the action, but the larger issues will linger after the last page is read.” – School Library Journal
A one-word text message: That’s all Michal “Mike” Garcia needs to gather a crowd. Mike is a seventeen-year-old bookie, and Sanctuary is where she takes bets for anyone at Carson City High with enough cash. Her only rule: Never participate, never place a bet for herself.
Then Josh Ellison moves to town. He pushes Mike to live her life, to feel a rush of something—play the game, he urges, stop being a spectator.
So Mike breaks her one rule. She places a bet, feels the rush.
In an act of desperation, she and Josh—who has a sordid past of his own—concoct a plan: The pair will steal from Carson City’s elite to pay back Mike’s debt. Then they’ll give the rest of their haul to those who need it most. How can burglary be wrong if they are making things right?