Series: Sweet Valley High #1
Published by St. Martin’s Press on November 27th 2012
Genres: Contemporary Women, Fiction, General, Social Themes, Young Adult
Who will Todd choose—the glamorous Jessica or the gentle Elizabeth?
Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield are identical twins—beautiful, blonde, perfect—but they couldn’t be more different from each other. Elizabeth is friendly, good-natured, and kind, and the complete opposite of her clever, conniving sister. Jessica believes the world revolves around her…and the problem is that most of the time it does. Jessica always gets what she wants—at school, amongst her friends, and especially with boys.
This time, she’s got her eye on Todd Wilkins, the good-looking star of Sweet Valley High’s basketball team—and the one boy Elizabeth really likes. Now the twins are in a game of double love, with Todd as first prize. Will Elizabeth fight for the Todd? What will Jessica stoop to in order to get what she wants? Can the bonds of sisterhood stand up to the pangs of a broken heart?
Welcome to Sweet Valley High… the beloved series by Francine Pascal.
Funny story about how I was introduced to Sweet Valley High. Would you believe that it was my grandmother that first talked me into reading them? Yes, I said my grandmother! I would see her devouring an SVH book every time I went to her house and eventually I asked her about them. She pushed the first book into my hands and told me to read it. From that point on, she would buy a book and loan it to me or I’d buy the next one and loan it to her. It was our special thing. So, here I am as an adult and now grandma’s gone. I’m so far removed from High School that I’ve often wondered at my inability to let these books go when my girls have no interest in SVH.
I was talking to my friend Jami and she remembers reading these books as well. Our talk led us to this crazy idea for a throwback book blog theme. A mad scramble to buy books missing in our collection ensued and here we are!
First things first
I don’t remember Jessica being such a brat! Seriously, I wanted to strangle that girl! And Liz…can we say PUSHOVER? It’s really funny that I don’t remember thinking these things as a teen. I’m curious what my grandma was thinking when she was reading this book.
The 80’s was tough!
It’s crazy that bullying was every bit as popular in the 80’s as it is today. Only in the 80’s weight shaming apparently wasn’t a big deal because even the “good guys” in the story are dropping lines like,
“You want to know the sort of girl people fix me up with?” he asked. “It goes like this; ‘Win, have I got a girl for you! What a personality!” That always means two hundred and fifty pounds and two-foot-five! I have to put her hamburger on the floor so she can reach it.”
Francine Pascal was obsessed with numbers
Jessica is continually saying odd things like, “seven-hundred and thirty-seven kinds of idiots,’ or “five-hundred and thirty-seven cities!” and my favorite…
He has got to be the most wonderful boy in a hundred and thirty-seven states!
I can’t make this up, Y’all!
Not only is she an airhead but she just isn’t nice. She doesn’t want to date Todd because he bored her but she doesn’t want Elizabeth to have him either. So, she just tells Elizabeth that he sexually assaulted her. Elizabeth’s response is to shut Todd out but no one ever considers calling the police? I get it, these were written in the 80’s but still…
Let’s talk about that 2-star rating:
I enjoyed reading this book for nostalgia sake but I can’t bring myself into giving it a five-star rating. Yet, I have the strange compulsion to read book number two. Strange compulsions don’t equal good book but somehow I can’t bring myself to look away. I will read book number 2! I just can’t help myself. It’s like a delightfully ridiculous train wreck that I can’t help but adore.
My adult rating: 2-stars.
My bratty inner teen rating on a scale of 1-5: 10