Trading Faces (novel)

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Trading Faces By:
Author Julia DeVillers, Jennifer Roy
Cover artist Paige Pooler
Country United States
Language English
Genre Young Adult
Publisher Simon and Schuster
Publication date
December 30, 2008
Media type Print (Hardcover)
Pages 304
ISBN 1-4169-7531-4
OCLC 225874770
LC Class PZ7.D4974 Tr 2009
Followed by 'Take Two'

Trading Faces is a juvenile novel by Julia DeVillers and Jennifer Roy. The book, published by Simon and Schuster, was released December 30, 2008.[citation needed] The book is told in first person, but switches throughout the book on who is telling it. The twins switch telling it every chapter.


Payton and Emma Mills are identical twins. Payton is very cool, fashionable and more social, but isn't academically smart, but where Emma is extremely intelligent, and, goes up in many competitions, but has nearly no friends (besides Payton), social or fashion smarts. Everyone, except those close to them, cannot tell them apart. Both twins are also embarrassed by each other, Payton because Emma is walking around always in hideous clothes, and Emma because Payton is always walking around with no intelligence.

Payton and Emma have been going to an all-girl private school up to sixth grade. They are finally going to a public school, and both twins are very excited, but for different reasons. Payton is excited to make new friends, see cute boys, and to be cool. Emma wants to learn more, go in more competitions, and interact with people as intelligent as she is.

On the first day of school, both twins realize that they have no classes together, not even lunch. At first they are upset, but then realize it won't be so bad. They will finally have their own identities.

Prior to the story, over the summer, Payton spent all of summer at camp working for a wealthy girl, Ashlynn, for her cool clothes. She believes they will help her fit in better. She wears them every day for the first few days of school.

In homeroom, Payton meets the most popular girl in school, Sydney Fish. They immediately strike up friendship, though Payton is worried that Sydney won't like her because she isn't cool enough. At lunch, though, Sydney invites Payton to sit with her and her friends, Cashmere, Quinn, and Priya.

Emma, on the other hand, is not in the front row, center seat, as usual. That spot is taken by another extremely intelligent girl Jazmine James. Emma hopes she and Jazmine will become friends, so she can finally have an intellectual conversation with someone. Jazmine, however, turns out to be very snobby and mean. Jazmine also has two also very intelligent sidekicks, Hector and Tess.

After the first day of school, their parents take them out to eat at a Chinese restaurant, as a family tradition. They each receive presents from their parents, an iPhone from their mother, and two matching bracelets with the first letter of their first name on them.

Payton is doing wonderful with her social life, and loves school. Emma, on the other hand, isn't getting a good reputation with her teachers, unlike usual, where teachers love her.

One day, Payton makes a fatal mistake, which ends up with Sydney being mad at her, after Payton yelled at Sydney and spilled her lunch all over the most popular guy in school, Ox. Emma tells Payton to switch places, so they do. While switching places, Emma, as Payton, redeems herself so Sydney won't be mad at Payton anymore.

After switching places, the twins realize that they somewhat like being each other, Emma liking being popular and having friends for one, and Payton liking being treated like a genius. So they decide to stay like the other twin for a little more.

After school one day, Emma, still as Payton, goes to the mall with Sydney and her crew. Emma picks out some amazing outfits for her and Sydney's crew friends, showing her true inner fashionista. Emma bonds with Quinn, and really likes her, as she's definitely the nicest one in Sydney's group. Emma meets Ox at the mall, whom Sydney has a giant crush on, and bonds with him. They discover they really like each other, but are awkward around each other, too. Ox even invites Emma to sit at the pep rally with him, in the special seats reserved for football players.

Payton, disguised as Emma, joins the crew for VOGS (Videocast Of Gecko Students), a live videocast which will air during the pep rally. Payton volunteers for Emma to be a reporter during VOGS. When Payton tells Emma this, she expects her to be thrilled, but to her dismay, Emma is furious, due to her phobia of being on camera, because she is afraid that she'll look stupid. Emma can't, however, back out anymore, because then Jazmine James will think she's a wimp.

On the day of the pep rally, Emma makes a schedule for when the twins should switch. When the twins switch, they accidentally forget to switch their bracelets. While coming out of the janitor's closet, the twins' secret meeting place, Payton bumps into Jazmine, and accidentally drops the schedule, unbeknowest to her.

At the pep rally, Sydney sits with Ox, but to her dismay, Ox asks her to leave for Emma. On the videocast, Jazmine points out to everyone the schedule that they dropped, revealing to everyone that they switched. Payton and Emma then have a huge fight, then after, realizing that Emma still had her mic on, and that the whole school heard their quarrel. They are punished severely. However, they learned their lesson.

At the end of the book, Quinn, who both Payton and Emma both really like, despite being in Sydney's group, exchanges phone numbers with Emma, who she really likes. Tess then also exchanges phone numbers with Payton, who both twins agree is kind of nice, though Emma doesn't completely trust her, because she was one of Jazmine's sidekicks. Payton and Emma then begin to swear that they will never switch again, but decide not to, because "you never say never ."


Payton Mills- The cool, fashionable social twin of the two. She initially desperately wants to be friends with Sydney, leading to their twin switch, but then realizes that what she really wants is some good friends who she can always depend on.

Emma Mills-The intelligent, stressful twin of the two. At the beginning of the book, all she wants is to be smart and the best at everything, but then, at the end of the book, realizes she can be smart, have friends, a social life, and be fashionable, too.

Sydney Fish- The most popular girl in school. Though she starts out sweet to Payton, she eventually shows her true colors, an arrogant, hot-tempered girl who thinks she's better than everyone. She is best friends with Cashmere, Priya, and Quinn, though Quinn stops hanging out with her near the end of the book, because she then realizes Sydney's mean ways, too.

Ox- A popular jock who Emma has a crush on, initially because he's cute, but then realizes that he's also smart, caring, and funny, too. He and Emma have an obvious crush on each other, though Sydney has a massive crush on him. He does not return Sydney's feelings.

Jazmine James- An intelligent student, about as smart as Emma. Though a genius, she is also arrogant and nasty. She always makes fun of Emma for being stupid (although she is as smart as Jazmine) and for her alleged balance problems. Her sidekicks are Hector and Tess, though at the end of the book, Tess stops hanging out with her as much. Jazmine is the one who busted Payton and Emma for switching on a live videocast.

Quinn- One of Sydney's friends at the beginning of the book. Despite being friends with Sydney, she is very nice. At the end of the book, she stops being friends with Sydney and becomes Emma's friend instead.

Tess Hamilton- One of Jazmine James's sidekicks at the beginning of the book. Like Quinn, she is a nice person who hangs out with arrogant people. She becomes friends with Payton at the end of the book and stops hanging out with Jazmine as much.

Cashmere- Sydney's best friend. She is fashionable and cool, yet is always put down by Sydney. Despite this, she remains loyal to Sydney. She is a bit air-headed, too and not kind at all.

Hector Jordan- One of Jazmine's sidekicks. Unlike Tess, he is just like Jazmine, though not as mean, just goes along with what Jazmine says.

Nick- A pretty smart boy who is quiet, thoughtful, and a bit nerdy. He talks to Emma at the beginning of the book, and becomes friends with Payton and acquaintances with Emma at the end of the book. Payton originally thought Nick and Emma would make a perfect love match, though Emma surprises her, and everyone else, by liking Ox.


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