Sweet Valley High #17: Love Letters
The moral of the story: Sweet Valley is the best place to live EVAR! Also, being friends with Elizabeth means never having to tell the truth, at least not until her morality rubs off on you and you decide to out yourself anyway.
The Big Deal: Party at Lila’s
Caroline Pearce has invented a boyfriend for herself. His name is Adam and he writes her love letters. Caroline can’t understand why nobody wants to be her friend (it’s because you gossip about everyone, you nosy bitch) but as soon as she starts talking about Adam people start being friendly to her. Caroline has a sister, Anita, who goes to Sweet Valley College (which is apparently only five miles away). Anita is kind of a bitch. In the Wakefields’ driveway, Caroline finds a photocopy of a letter in some spilled trash. It’s from Alice Wakefield to some company in San Francisco. Very mysterious. Caroline goes off to the beach and finds Jessica there. They have an argument and Caroline spitefully shows her the letter. It concerns a job offer Alice is thinking of taking, which would involve moving the family to San Francisco.
Jessica confronts her mother over dinner that night and there’s a big fight and everyone throws their napkins on the table to show how upset they are (except Liz, who folds hers neatly before going upstairs). Later, Liz goes out with Todd, Roger and Olivia. They run into Caroline at the Dairi Burger and Caroline blabs the news about the possibility of the Wakefields moving. She really sucks. Caroline goes to the library the next day to take out a book of Robert Browning’s letters. She’s been copying them and using them as her letters from “Adam.” Meanwhile, Liz is writing a play about Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning. Gee, I wonder how this will play out? Caroline tells her sister about Adam and suddenly her sister cares about her and offers to give her a makeover.
Jessica and Elizabeth decide to send dozens of brochures and pamphlets to their parents about how terrific Sweet Valley is and start telling them how awful it would be to live in San Francisco. After treating their parents to a meal of gourmet takeout from all the best restaurants in Sweet Valley, Liz reads her play to the family. In the play, Liz quotes from some of Robert Browning’s letters and Jessica realizes they’ve all been tricked by Caroline. She and Lila tell Caroline they’re planning a party and Adam will be the guest of honor.
Jessica makes sure Liz finds out Caroline’s letters are fake and Caroline confesses to Liz that she made Adam up. She begs her not to read her play for the competition because then everyone would know. And Liz actually considers it. Stupid. Caroline confesses to her sister, too. Anita gives her a long talk about how to make friends, and Caroline decides her days of spreading gossip are over.
Mr. and Mrs. Wakefield decide not to leave Sweet Valley. Liz wins the playwriting competition. Todd digs up a friend, Jerry, from out of town to pretend to be Adam for Lila’s party. Caroline feels bad about it and tells everyone the truth anyway. Jerry falls for Caroline and they vow to write to each other. Aww.
Setup for the next book: Regina and Bruce are getting friendly.
Anita thought the Wakefields were the nicest girls in Caroline’s class. She was always pushing Caroline to get to know the twins better.
The twins are so amazing, even college kids we’ve never heard of love them.
“Oh, Liz. I know what everyone says about Bruce. But it’s just not true! He’s incredibly nice to me, and so considerate.”
That sounds like Bruce, Elizabeth thought. Or at least it sounds like Bruce on the make. Once he gets what he wants from Regina, he’ll drop her.
But Elizabeth didn’t want to disillusion Regina. “I’m glad if you’re glad,” she said, trying to sound happier than she felt.
Did I imagine Bruce attempting to rape Elizabeth? It did really happen, right? And she’s not even going to warn this sweet girl about him? What a bitch.
Jessica and the Number 137:
None. Has she outgrown this hyperbole? Should I take this section out?
The Cover: I hate Caroline Pearce, from her weird mullety bangs to her buttoned-all-the-way-up shirt. I hate Liz’s barrettes too.