Tina Daniels is thirteen years old and she is a star. She can sing and dance. Everyone knows her. Everyone loves her. They call her "Curls" because she has beautiful curly hair. They all want her photo. She have anythings she wants.
But is she happy?
Does she want to be a star?
"Tina, why are you eating chocolates?" her mother asks. "I like them. They're nice!" Tina says. You're getting fat, and a fat girl doesn't get lots of money in Hollywood. "Mrs Daniels says. You want the money-I don't!" Tina says.
Tina is angry with her mother and Mrs Daniels is angry with Tina. Tina leaves the room and cries.
Tina is very sad. She does not want to be a star. She wants a quit life. One day she an idea. Her schoolfriend, Mary, has a grandmother called Mrs White. Old Mrs White lives in the country, in Stonechurch. Tina has a photo of Mary in front of Mrs White's house. It looks very pretty-not like the city!
Tina decide to go there.
Tina is at the city station. She is wearing jeans and an old jumper. People do not know who she is.
"Where do you want to go, young girl?" the man at the ticket office asks her. Stonechurch, please. When's the next train?" Tina asks. "The train leaves at two o'clock from platform three. the man say. Tina buys her ticket.
Tina arrives at Stonechurch. She sees an old house near the river. It is the house in the photo! There are flowers and trees in the garden.
'Mrs White must live here." Tina thinks. She goes to the front door and rings the bell. An old lady with white hair and a kind face opens the door. A black cat comes out too.
" Good afternoon, who are you?" the old lady asks.
"Oh, hello, Mrs White. My name is Tina. I'm a schoolfriend of your granddaughter, Mary." 'Mary's schoolfriend-how nice to meet you! What are you doing in Stonechurch. Tina?" Mrs White asks. Tina says she hates the city life. "Well," says Mrs White, come in and have a cup of tea, my dear."
Tina and Mrs White drink tea and talk. Mrs White does not know Tina is a star. She does not have a television or a radio. Tina, is very happy! Mrs White says, " Tina, you can say with me for a week, but first you must telephone your mother." Tina is angry with her mother and doesn't telephone her. "Mother says yes"! she says to Mrs White later. Her face is little red.
Two days later Mrs White is talking for a walk.
"Look at the lambs!" Mrs White says.
"Yes. I love them. I want to be a lamb. They cam jump and run and be happy."
"You can run and jump and be happy too. Tina."
"No. I can't I -
"Tina, you're young. Run!"
Tina is living a very different life in the country. She sees new things all the time.
Now it is night, and Tina and Mrs White are waiting. it is very quiet. Every night some hedgehogs come to the garden. Mrs White puts out food for them.
"I love their long brown noses." Mrs White says. "So do I." says Tina.
"Oh, look!" says Tina.
A big brown fox is running across the garden. At first Tina is very happy to see the fox. There aren't any foxes in gardens in the city! Then she sees the fox has something in its mouth. The "something" is Mrs White's chicken! Mrs White is very angry and wants to kill the fox!
Mrs White and Tina look at the fox's work. The chickens are making a terrible noise. "We can't have eggs for breakfast in the morning, Tina, say Mrs White. "Why not?" asks Tina. "The chickens aren't very happy they can't give us eggs," Mrs White explains.
For breakfast Tina has toast and fresh orange juice.
Three days later Tina is with Bella, the horse. She loves Bella and gives her some sugar.
Today the postman has a latter for. Mrs White. When he sees Tina, he says. " I don't believe it-it's Curls!" Them he says to her, "Everyone's looking for you. you're in all the newspapers!" He runs to his red van to find his newspaper.
Mrs White reads the postman's newspaper.
"Tina", says Mrs White, "you're the LOST TV STAR: aren't you! I don't understand...Your mother..."
"Yes, I'm Curls, but please don't send me home. I'm happy here with you."
"I'm coming with you to see your mother. I've got a good idea." Mrs White says.
Tina's mother is very happy to see Tina again. Mrs White explains her idea: Tina can go her friend's school on the island of Guernsey, between England and France. Tina can have friends there who do not know she is Curls.
"What? I want Tina to be a star!" Mrs Daniels says.
"She wants to be happy," Mrs White says quietly.
Tina is at school in Guernsey. She has new friends and new interests. One day, Tina's friend is reading a magazine. It is about film and television stars. There are lots of beautiful photos of beautiful people. Everyone looks very happy. "What a wonderful life!" the friend says. Tina smiles to herself. "Who wants to be a star? she says. "I don't".
BY LONGMAN PENGUIN