Sweet Valley High Magna Edition: A Night to Remember

MAGNA-NightToRemember-Outer

This is where the whole thing goes sideways, folks. Get ready.

The moral of the story: Prom is just not worth it.

The Big Deal: Party at the beach, horrible Jungle Prom

Synopsis:

At a totally awesome beach party, Bruce dares Jessica to swim out to the buoy. Liz begs Jessica not to do it, but Jessica laughs and jumps in the water (after stripping down to her bikini “striptease-style”). Liz runs around freaking out, telling Todd, Sam and Enid that Jessica’s in the water. Everyone tells Liz to chill, but she can’t. Jessica comes back to shore and Liz is all, “Jessica! You’re all right!” Jessica laughs and says of course she’s all right. Liz gets upset and decides she’s not going to worry about Jessica anymore; Liz is only going to worry about herself from now on.

Lila is having a terrible time with her date, Tony Alimenti. He’s a nice guy, but Lila isn’t ready for dating yet and only agreed to come to the party because Jessica and Amy wouldn’t leave her alone. Lila watches her friends dancing and wonders if they’re ever scared that their boyfriends will overpower them. Then Tony tries to put his arm around her and she jumps.

Meanwhile, Bruce is making out with Andrea Slade. He knows Andrea likes him a lot, but he’s just not interested because she doesn’t present a challenge. She tries to get him to commit to a picnic next weekend, but Bruce is an ass and tells her he doesn’t do commitment and if she doesn’t like it she can take a hike.

A ton of kids run onto the beach wearing Big Mesa’s school colors. They knock over the food table, spray shaving cream on everything and pick up the girls and carry them for a few feet and then drop them in the sand (Lila screams at the top of her lungs). The whole thing only lasts five minutes, but the mess is horrible. Sweet Valley wants revenge.

At the Dairi Burger afterward, the twins argue over whether or not Sweet Valley should retaliate while Bruce and some other former Club X members are in the parking lot discussing how they can get revenge on Big Mesa. Tony takes Lila home and she freaks out when he tries to kiss her goodnight. Liz and Todd go to Miller’s Point and talk. They decide everyone will calm down and nothing else will come of the raid on the beach.

While getting ready for the beach party, the twins came up with an awesome idea for a jungle themed school dance. At school on Tuesday, Liz tells her friends she’s gotten the go ahead from Principal Cooper on the Jungle Prom. They talk about whether or not there should be a king and queen, and Liz wonders if she should go for it. Later, Todd convinces her she would be a great queen. After school, Jessica goes out with her friends and declares that she intends to be prom queen.

Jungle Queen

Jungle Queen

Lila has a session that afternoon with Nathan Pritchard, her counselor. She’s really upset about Saturday night and tells Nathan what happened with Tony. Nathan does his best to convince her that maybe Tony wasn’t trying to hurt her and that Lila’s just oversensitive right now. Lila concedes that he’s probably right and says she doesn’t want to be scared of every boy in the world.

Environmental Alert, the organization Liz found to fund the prom, calls Liz and says they’ve put together a prize package for whoever is elected prom queen. The queen will win a trip to Brazil and the opportunity to be an honorary spokesperson for Environmental Alert. Liz runs out to the pool to tell Jessica and Lila the news. When she goes back inside, Jessica starts gushing to Lila about how awesome it will be when she’s prom queen. Lila pretends to fall asleep so Jessica will shut up. A few minutes later, Alice comes home. Lila watches Alice and Jessica talk to each other. She wishes she had a mother to talk to. Damn, Lila makes me so sad in this book.

Jessica misses a meeting of the prom committee, so Liz goes ahead without her. The committee decides on formal dress for the prom, which Liz knows is going to upset Jessica, who wanted everyone to dress all Tarzan and Jane. When Liz tells everyone about the prize package for the queen, everyone on the committee tells her she’s the logical choice. Jessica is pissed that Liz let the committee vote on the dress code issue without her, but doesn’t mind when she realizes that if it weren’t for Liz, Jessica wouldn’t be going to Brazil. She’s sure she doesn’t have any competition for the title of queen.

Andrea finds Bruce after school on Friday and asks him what he’s doing the next day. Bruce says something rude and is sure she’ll tell him off, but she just looks sad and tells him to call her sometime. Bruce thinks it’s kind of fun to string her along and see how much abuse she’ll take. He goes outside to the parking lot to find that his car, along with everyone else’s, is a mess. The damned Big Mesa jerks have come back with their shaving cream and they’ve drawn bulls (their mascot) all over everyone’s cars. The same afternoon, Liz gets a copy of Big Mesa’s newspaper in her Oracle inbox. There’s an article about how crappy Sweet Valley’s basketball team is.

A few days later, Liz is looking over The Oracle before it goes to the printer and notices the story she asked Caroline to write is a little weird. She wanted an article promoting the prom and asked Caroline to leave names out of it, including Liz’s. Caroline has written a piece of crap that makes it sound like the whole prom was Jessica’s idea. Liz is pissed, but decides to get over it. That night, Jessica says something about “when I go to Brazil,” and Liz gets angry again. She asks Jessica if it ever occurred to her that Liz might like to go to Brazil. Jessica says no, being prom queen isn’t really Liz’s thing. Liz gets all weird and asks how Jessica knows what her kind of thing is, as if Jessica hasn’t been living with her for sixteen years. They have a big argument. Afterward, Jessica goes to Sam’s to study and tells him how strange Liz has been acting. Sam makes her forget about it and they talk about maybe spending the night together after the prom.

There’s a big pep rally for all the sporting events that are coming up. Jessica outshines the rest of the cheerleaders and then makes a big speech about the prom. Liz knows it’s all part of her campaign to be voted queen.

Jessica and Lila are shopping at Lisette’s a few days later and talking about Liz. Lila tells Jessica to stop being so cocky about being voted queen because a lot of people think Liz is going to win. Jessica is all “Yeah, whatever.” She finds a dress she likes and goes to try it on. Just then, Liz and Enid come in. Liz finds a dress she likes and goes to try it on. Jessica and Liz come out of their fitting rooms at the same time wearing the same dress. Lila thinks it’s pretty funny.

Bruce goes to the marina to take his father’s boat out. He runs into Nicholas Morrow, who mentions Regina. Bruce doesn’t know how Nicholas can talk about her without getting upset. Bruce goes home that night, takes a picture of Regina out of his nightstand drawer and cries.

On Friday, Liz gets another delivery from Big Mesa. It’s another article from the Bull’s Eye, and this one is full of accusations that Sweet Valley cheated to win the track meet the day before. Todd convinces Liz not to retaliate and they go to lunch. In the cafeteria, Jessica is handing out buttons that say “Save the Rainforest—Come to the Jungle Prom,” and telling people she used her own money to have them made. Liz is outraged at Jessica’s campaigning. Liz, you’re allowed to campaign, too, if you want. Todd tries to tell her to calm down, and she gets even more angry.

On Monday morning, Lila is getting ready for school and wondering if she should go to the prom. She starts thinking about Nathan. She realizes he’s really cute, and she’s grateful to him for helping her so much in counseling. She decides she’ll go to the prom even though she doesn’t have a date. Nathan will be chaperoning and she can just hang out with him. Lila goes into her counseling session that afternoon a new woman. She flirts with Nathan a little and tells him she’s back to her old self.

Jessica drags Amy, Robin and Lila to a prom committee meeting and pisses Liz off by acting like she wants to be involved. Before the meeting is over, she brings up the real reason she came to the meeting: she doesn’t think any Big Mesa kids should be allowed to come to the prom. The committee is split, so Liz arranges for the whole school to vote. She’s happy when the school votes against Jessica’s idea.

Later, Penny tells the twins that she was contacted by Sweet Sixteen magazine. They heard about the prom and want to do an interview with whoever came up with the idea. I’m so sure. Liz and Jessica are scheduled for an interview and photo shoot the next day. Jessica doesn’t show up and the Sweet Sixteen people are tired of waiting. Against her better judgment, Liz agrees to do the interview alone. When Jessica shows up forty-five minutes late and finds out they left without her, she’s convinced Liz set it all up somehow.

On Wednesday, Liz writes an editorial for The Oracle. It’s an attack on Big Mesa. Liz gets mad when Todd tells her she’s being mean. Friday night is the big basketball game against Big Mesa, and Liz says some mean things to Enid about Hugh not having the guts to show up and support his school. Damn, she’s crabby. Sweet Valley wins the game, and the Big Mesa kids hightail it out of there.

Finally, it’s prom night. Everyone lavishes Liz with praise and Jessica is mad that they’re all acting like Liz did all the work. When Sam points out that Liz actually did do all the work, Jessica stomps off and tells him to ask someone else to dance. He asks Liz. Todd is elected prom king, and in one hour, the queen will be announced. Jessica knows she needs to do something fast if she’s going to take Liz out of the running, which she’s even more determined to do when she sees Liz and Sam dancing together. A Big Mesa guy starts flirting with Jessica and she notices he’s drunk. She flirts back to get some of his alcohol and then pours a ton of it into Liz’s punch cup.

Drunk and happy, Liz tells Sam she doesn’t care about being queen. She yells to Andrea and Patty that she’s withdrawing her name so Jessica can win. Jessica does win, but as soon as the crown is on her head, she feels guilty.

Suddenly, twenty or thirty Big Mesa kids come in and start running through the gym, punching people on their way through to the football field. Bruce rounds up a bunch of guys to follow them. Jessica, suddenly worried about Liz, jumps off the stage to try to find her. She sees Liz and Sam wobbling out the door, but by the time she makes her way through the crowd and into the parking lot, Liz is in the driver’s seat of the Jeep. Before Jessica can get to them, Liz drives off. Jessica finds Todd and tells him they need to go after them.

Lila is stuck in the gym. No matter what exit she tries to use, there are people blocking her way. Finally, Nathan takes her arm and leads her out of the gymnasium. The hallway isn’t much better, so Nathan pulls her into an empty classroom. Once they’re alone, Lila has a flashback to John’s attack on her and she’s suddenly sure that Nathan was only pretending to be nice so he could get her alone and take advantage of her. She screams. The cops have made it to the school, and at the sound of Lila’s scream, they burst into the classroom. Lila says Nathan attacked her, and the cops haul him off.

There’s a massive brawl out on the football field and Bruce is right in the middle of it. A Big Mesa kid hits him with a bat and knocks him down. Just as the other guy is going to hit him again, a beautiful girl tells the guy to stop. She reaches out to help Bruce up, but he gets kicked in the head and blacks out.

Todd and Jessica hop in Todd’s car and go off in the direction Liz and Sam went. Jessica tells Todd that Liz and Sam are drunk, but says she doesn’t know where they got the alcohol. They see a crashed Jeep on the side of the road and pull over. There are cops on the scene already, and they say both the driver and passenger are dead.

To be continued…

Quotes:

In [Bruce’s] opinion, the only fun in dating was the sport of it. The more it was like a tennis match, where he had to wear down his opponent through expertise and sheer force of will, the better he liked it.

Jeez. What a freak.

The Cover: God, the twins are so ugly! Is it really possible that neither one of them did anything special with her hair for the biggest social event of the year?

MAGNA-NightToRemember-Inner

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Comments
  • girltalkread August 21, 2009 at 1:04 pm

    This is the last book I read before deciding I was too old for Sweet Valley High (which was my SENIOR YEAR of high school-yup so sad). But I also was so upset at what happened in terms of the plot that I just couldn’t go on. But my sister read a lot of the books that came afterward I think up until Jessica falling in love w/ the vampire- I think that is what inspired my sister’s current love of all things vampire ;) thanks for the memories!!!

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  • Sandy August 21, 2009 at 1:28 pm

    Also why is it called a Magna Edition and not book 95?

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  • Megan August 21, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    SAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!

    Okay, that’s out of my system. Jessica is a brat and Liz needs to grow, like, twelve pairs. Lila breaks my heart in this book.

    OMG, so much excitement is coming up…

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  • Kate August 21, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    Holy-moly! Everything isn’t right in sweet valley anymore!

    And what’s with the cheesy fabric and the mismatched corsage on the cover?

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  • Misty August 21, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    Wow – the twins look terrible on the cover and stepback. However, that is the least of their worries. Even their perfect size 6 figures and blue-green eyes can’t compete with the drama of a high school rumble (seriously, you would think that Big Mesa and SVH are the Sharks and the Jets) or driving under the influence.

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  • Daners Isadora- Bond Girl August 21, 2009 at 11:07 pm

    I HATE YOU, JESSICA WAKEFIELD, YOU EVIL SKANK BITCH!!!!!

    I will always remember you, Sam. I’m lighting a candle for you.

    Also, Lila, you need to go see a real professional, sweetiedarling. Someone who’s gone through years of schooling to help you sort through your problems. Or, you can just have John killed like I said before. Both ways are acceptable to me.

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  • the "s" word August 22, 2009 at 8:59 am

    LOL @ the “evil skank bitch” comment above.

    I just got done reading “In Love with a Prince” last night, where Lila is acting fairly normal post-JP for about five-six books until “ANTR,” where she’s all jumpy and scared of boys again. I guess the writers realized that they probably shouldn’t gloss their way out of this one.

    -MR.

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  • Lori August 22, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    Finally! I’ve been waiting for you to get the good stuff its been hard waiting through boring Steven.

    Both girls look horrible on the cover and dressed like their going to a 1950s prom.

    Poor Sam. He so got screwed. Jessica your such a psyco.

    Poor Andrea went from being Tricia ghost for Steven to a door mat for Bruce. Too bad she didn’t go psycho.

    Poor Lila but its nice to see a little contiunity here. Its rare. There is never enough of Lila.

    Next up: Margo!

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    Lelandria Reply:

    Different Andrea then Steve’s Andrea.

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  • Christine August 23, 2009 at 1:25 am

    Sweet Valley *would* never be the same after this crappy book…but y’know what would’ve been cool? If the Jungle Prom had marked a MAJOR change in the series (apart from the whole jumping-the-shark aspect since the books got more ridiculous from here on.)

    Ok…What if Jessica had felt soooooo guilty and responsible for killing Sam/almost killing Liz (which she *should’ve* felt instead of blaming her sister and being willing to let her take the fall… arrgghh) – Anyway, what if she was so traumatized by the events of the Prom that she had an epiphany and realized she’s been a selfish sociopath all these years, FINALLY GROWS A CONSCIENCE and TOTALLY CHANGES HER PERSONALITY into that of a do-gooder who wants to help others (ie: meddle) in order to atone for her past.

    Meanwhile, Elizabeth is so horrified by the deadly consequences of Jessica’s actions that she FINALLY GROWS A SPINE AND REFUSES TO FORGIVE HER SISTER, for once (and this time, for good)! AND what if her traumatic car accident/near-death experience/sister’s betrayal caused her to re-evaluate her life and TOTALLY CHANGE HER PERSONALITY into that of a wild and reckless, I-could-die-tomorrow-live-for-the-moment-and-damn-the-consequences, me-me-me-and-to-hell-with-everyone-else, (justifiably) mean and conniving psycho!

    Yes, I’m talking about a PERMANENT twin-switch, people! Just think, both characters would be more likeable because there’d be a valid reason for their extreme goodness/evil-ness (not a word, I know :P ) And it would be kind of entertaining to see them trading personalities for an extended period of time. At least for a few books. :)

    Look at that prom photo of them, torn in half – deep symbolism! ;) The sisterly bond irrevocably broken! They should’ve been enemies for life after this. It could’ve been fun. (Anybody wanna write fanfic? :) )

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    Shannon Reply:

    That would actually be pretty good! I elect you to write the fanfic.
    You’re right, of course. Things are strained and awful between the twins for like five books and then everything goes back to normal.

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  • Abi August 23, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    Jessica is such an irresponsible bitch. She’s willing to let her sister take the blame for HER idiocies. How typically Jessica Wakefield. You would think that she would grow up a little, but no… and Liz! WTF? I know that this is a couple of books ahead, but she finally remembers WHY she was drunk and she decides to forgive her sister anyway? What. The. Heck.

    I see why you are getting a headache reading these books… this is pretty ridiculous lol.

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  • Sandy August 24, 2009 at 11:37 am

    I’m digging the new site.

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  • Shannon August 24, 2009 at 11:39 am

    Thanks, Sandy! The only problem I’m having is that I can’t figure out how to make threaded comments so we can reply to each other. I’m still working on it.

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  • Katia November 25, 2009 at 10:27 pm

    Awwww poor Lila!
    Of course Sam has to die cause he was planning to spend the night with his cheerwhore of a girlfriend so he must die cause thats just pure evil in SV.
    Why cant we change the story???? Get Todd in the car…

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  • Karla January 12, 2010 at 8:24 pm

    Jesus, how much booze was in that punch, anyway? And wouldn’t Liz have been able to taste it? Oh, why am I questioning the logic of Sweet Valley. It’s like asking why there’s no snow in Acapulco.

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    Lelandria Reply:

    Wouldn’t she smell it as well?

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  • Hina December 18, 2010 at 5:08 am

    This book doesn’t exist! Nor does the next one! Sam is still alive, hates Jessica and loves me!

    Oh and I hate this post-rape Lila. It’s not the Lila I like.

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  • Jessica Squits the Quad December 28, 2010 at 9:49 pm

    Finally, some realistic repercussions to something traumatic! I loved Lila’s segments.

    Liz was an almighty bitch in this one…she caused SO much conflict just by trying to become a ‘new’ person (shouldn’t they have realized by now this doesn’t work?-The New Jessica, The New Elizabeth, Who’s Who…etc…). And what she said to Enid at the final basketball game?! So. Mean.

    Best quote of the book: “She really wasn’t sure who was more of an idiot: herself for spiking Elizabeth’s punch, or Elizabeth for not even realizing she was drunk.” Ugh, so true. How could Elizabeth consume like 5 shots of vodka and not realize she was a little…unsteady? I’m so not buying the whole Elizabeth-is-so-smart thing. And by the way, if Elizabeth hadn’t disagreed just for the sake of arguing with Jessica over not letting Big Mesa kids in to the prom, there never would have been alcohol, so Jessica never would have spiked her drink, so Sam wouldn’t have been killed…? I just like blaming things on Elizabeth:)

    Also, I wish they wouldn’t put the barcode there. They did the same on the inside cover of The Evil Twin, and I’ve always wanted to see the whole picture!

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  • Callie November 22, 2012 at 1:28 am

    I just found all of my SVH books and I’m re-reading this one and realizing how cheesy it all was. And after reading the part where Jess and Lila are at the pool when Mrs. Wakefield comes out, Jessica tells Lila “Aren’t mothers great?” Yeah what a very shitty thing to say to someone who you know doesn’t have one at the moment!

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  • Kylie90210 May 6, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Am I the only one who prefers the books from this point on, ridiculousness and all? I lovvvvved this one, and although the next couple drag for me with the mourning, it just gets hard to stop reading! Lila gets more awesome, Jessica’s boyfriends start dying by the truckload, Liz cheats on Todd even more, it’s just amazingggggg! Oh, and Margo and Nora. Best storyline EVERRRR

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  • Dane Youssef September 11, 2013 at 6:27 am

    Ah, here we go. Here it is. The very beginning of the epic. Chapter one of the infamous “D.W.I Sam Murder Trial.”

    Boy, this was one of the more enthralling set of links in the infinite chain of “Sweet Valley.” The passage that started it all… “A NIGHT TO REMEMBER.” And none will ever forget. Not the likable townsfolk of Sweet Valley, and not us who read all about it… the faithful subscribers of this tribune, “Sweet Valley High.”

    EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT! One Jessica Wakefield, captain of the cheer-leading squad and Todd Wilkins, captain of the basketball team–the star and executive directors of SWEET VALLEY HIGH’S athletic divisions are crowned Homecoming Royalty… but their significant others abandon them at the inauguration… leave them for dead. And then find themselves making a brush with death themselves.

    And that’s just the headline. Brace yourself for the rest of the story… already in progress…

    Yes, Todd deciding to get back and Liz by fooling around with Jess. Starting up with her. A definite improvement there. Big upgrade. Yup. That’s my re-write.

    Liz snuck around on Todd plenty of times before. He only returned the favor a few. But he WAS having a sporadic thing with Jessica for a while, was he not? Seriously, for Liz there was a lot of other boys. But how many other girls did Mr. Wilkins have?

    And seriously… to our good Blogmaster General Shannon… thanks again.

    –All Our Appreciation, Dane Youssef

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  • Krista November 19, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    I remember how the format of the WHOLE series changed with this one. We went from one book storylines to story arcs that went on waaaaay too long.

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  • Krista November 19, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    Other bizarre things I just noted – the whole Big Mesa students thing – were Big Mesa kids just allowed to buy tickets? At all the proms I know about, at least half of the couple has to be a student at the host school. It’s weird that Big Mesa kids could just roll up.

    Also, what is up with these junior girls competing for prom queen? Every prom I’ve ever seen, its always been an honor reserved for the seniors.

    Silly, silly writing.

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  • Sandy August 21, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    OMG!! Jess falls in love with a vampire?? Can’t wait. And I was so mad at Jessica in this book. When Sweet Sixteen Magazine wants to do an interview with you, you show up on time!!! Ugh!!!

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  • Shannon August 21, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    I don’t know. I guess they felt like “Super Edition” just wasn’t super enough anymore and “Magna Edition” sounds so much cooler. I don’t know, “magna” just makes me think of a volcano.

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  • Megan August 21, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    Oh riiight, I remember the mini-yearbooks. Why is there still so much of this in my brain?

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  • Shannon August 21, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    Seriously! Jessica really needs to rethink this thing she’s got against watches.

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  • Shannon August 21, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    I knew you were going to shed a little tear, Megan. Poor, poor Sam.

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  • Shannon August 21, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    I think that weird purple leopard fabric is supposed to be a prom “mini-yearbook” that I didn’t find a good place to mention in my recap. If that stupid barcode wasn’t in the way I could tell you for sure.

    I really hate this cover.

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  • Shannon August 21, 2009 at 4:31 pm

    You know, I don’t get the whole Big Mesa thing. Why did they suddenly decide they hate Sweet Valley?

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  • Enid Rollins August 22, 2009 at 1:40 am

    I thought magna was a graphic novel today.

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  • Shannon August 22, 2009 at 11:28 am

    That’s manga. Switch the N and the G around and you’ve apparently got Super Duper Special Sweet Valley books.

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  • Lori August 22, 2009 at 1:56 pm

    I thought it was an in joke “Magna” and that dumb name Jessica called herself in “Who’s Who?”

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