Sweet Valley High #121: The High School War

SVH121Read part one of this miniseries here.

The Moral of the Story: Boys are idiots.

The Big Deal: Party at Todd’s

Synopsis:

The cops show up and break up the rumble. The Sweet Valley guys run off to another abandoned warehouse Bruce found for them to hide out in. Before they leave the scene, though, Ken sees the guy who beat him up say something to Jessica. He’s sure it’s some kind of crude remark, but of course it’s just Christian telling Jessica to meet him at the beach the next morning. She does and they decide they can never see each other again.

On Monday, Mr. Cooper holds an assembly and lays out some new rules, one of them being that nobody is allowed to wear school colors to school anymore. The guys get all upset and refuse to obey, taking to rebelliously wearing SVH t-shirts under their sweatshirts. You tell ‘em, boys. Predictably, Liz joins the “task force” Mr. Cooper is putting together. The task force will work to promote peace between the schools. Todd can’t believe Liz is against him. Liz can’t believe Todd is being such a jackass. She’s sure they’re going to break up any day because her friend from Palisades, Caitlin, just broke up with her boyfriend over this whole war thing. Liz feels bad for Caitlin, so she invites her and her friend Marla to come along with her to a party at Todd’s. Enid tries to tell her it’s a bad idea, but Liz is having none of that. Sure enough, nobody will talk to the Palisades girls and Todd yells at Liz. That was pretty freaking stupid.

Jessica finally tells Liz that she’s been learning to surf but asks her to keep it a secret. Jessica and Christian manage to stay away from each other for two whole days, but then meet at the beach again. They start making out and just can’t stop. Liz notices Jessica isn’t at school and worries that she’s drowned or something. She finds Ken, tells him what’s going on and they go to the beach to find her. Liz finds them first, but Christian manages to run away before Ken can see him. It doesn’t matter though, because a few days later, Ken overhears the twins talking about the guy Jessica has been seeing.

The boys decide it would be a good idea to slash the tires on some of the Palisades guys’ cars. Winston is seen and the guy threatens him. Winston spends most of the book wishing he could stand up to Bruce and whining that he has no choice but to do these stupid things. He gets a call one day from Todd telling him there’s going to be a special meeting at the abandoned warehouse. Winston thinks Todd doesn’t sound like himself, but assumes he’s just pissed about something. He ditches Maria and takes off.

Ken is sitting in his car, spying on the Wakefields’ house that night. He sees Todd and Liz leave, and after a while he sees Jessica get into the Jeep. He follows her to the beach, where she gets out and hops into another car. Then he follows the other car to a restaurant. He goes inside just in time to see Jessica and Christian totally making out because they apparently can’t even keep their hands off each other long enough to eat a meal. Ken threatens Christian and then tells Jessica he never wants to see her again. He jumps in his car and leaves. Jessica tells Christian they need to follow him.

Todd and Liz go to the Dairi Burger. Maria is there and she asks Todd what happened to the guys’ meeting. Todd says there was no meeting and now everyone is worried about Winston. Todd figures the Palisades guys must have found their warehouse hideout and told Winston to meet them there. Todd calls the rest of the guys and takes off with them. Liz calls the cops. She and some of the other girls follow Todd.

At the warehouse, the Palisades guys are beating the crap out of poor Winston. Then the Sweet Valley guys show up and it turns into another rumble. When the girls get there and see what’s going on, they start screaming. Ken, Christian and Jessica get there just as the cops do. Most of the guys quiet down, but Todd doesn’t seem to notice the cops and just keeps pummeling the guy he’s on top of. As the cops are putting him in the squad car, Liz says something to the cop about it all being a mistake, she only called them so they could break up the fight. Uh, Liz? Sometimes this is how they break up a fight. Todd overhears and is super pissed that Liz is the one who called the police.

Ugh, to be continued…

Quotes:

“But they’re not going to be safe even if they stay in Palisades,” Bruce growled. “I say it’s time to carry the battle back to their home turf.”

Aaron jumped to his feet. “Justice,” he shouted. “That’s all we’re after!”

“Justice,” Ken repeated, his voice ringing strong and clear in the cavernous warehouse.

And then they all broke into a song and dance number.

“Slash their tires?” Elizabeth repeated, gaping at Maria…It was bad, far worse even than Elizabeth had imagined.

What did you imagine that was so much better than some slashed tires?

I can’t do it, Jessica thought. But I have to do it. I’m still Ken’s girlfriend.

You are allowed to break up with him, you know.

“Hi, Olivia,” she said, waving to Olivia and her boyfriend, Rod Sullivan. “Hi, Rod.”

I thought Olivia broke up with Rod and eventually started dating some guy named Harry.

The Cover: This is the Cover of Bad Hair. Christian is probably the ugliest person I’ve ever seen on an SVH cover, and that’s certainly saying something. Todd’s greaser look is ridiculous. The leather jacket doesn’t suit him, and besides, it’s the Palisades guys who are supposed to be wearing leather. The SVH guys wear jean jackets. Duh.

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Comments
  • Lindsay November 4, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    “Ken is sitting in his car, spying on the Wakefields’ house that night”

    Holy Christ that’s creepy. And then him running around, playing detective and following Jess everywhere. I’m so glad the ghost writers write out such healthy teenage relationships.

    Liz is an artard.

    “But they’re not going to be safe even if they stay in Palisades,” Bruce growled. “I say it’s time to carry the battle back to their home turf.”

    Aaron jumped to his feet. “Justice,” he shouted. “That’s all we’re after!”

    “Justice,” Ken repeated, his voice ringing strong and clear in the cavernous warehouse.

    And then they all broke into a song and dance number.”

    This made my morning.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    I’m glad! It almost made me throw up when I read it in the book.
    Most of this book had a West Side Story feel to it, of course, but for some reason this part reminded me of Newsies instead.

    Ken is seriously a super creep.

    [Reply]

    Lindsay Reply:

    I watched West Side Story last night whilst high on drugs the doc gave me after surgery yesterday and thought of this SV. Of course, Jessica is really no Maria.

    Ooo, I thought you should know I did a little snap as I read that quote even before I reached your comment about the song/dance number. Great minds and all that!

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    Ha ha, I felt like shouting, “Get cool, boy!” through most of the warehouse scenes.

    [Reply]

    Lindsay Reply:

    Ha! That is so full of win and awesome!

    [Reply]

    Sandy Reply:

    I laughed when I read the song and dance line as well!

    [Reply]

  • Sandy November 4, 2009 at 1:38 pm

    I enjoyed this recap much more than the last.
    Okay, and now you can’t wear your school colors?!?!
    Dumb, but this must be as close to “gang related” as SW would get. Kind of like how the Bloods and Crips can’t wear any red or blue. For Winston being so smart, he’s stupid.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    I usually like Winston, but he was really whiny and annoying in this book.

    I think the “no school colors at your own school” thing is pretty silly.

    [Reply]

  • Merrie November 4, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    This is so horrible. And I know it won’t get better. It’s like a horrible car accident. I can’t look away.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    I know how you feel. Do I ever.

    [Reply]

  • Darren November 4, 2009 at 5:10 pm

    Oh man, this book is a real bummer for like AJ, then Sam, Jessica practically blows off Ken for another boy. What is it with Jessica? She behaves more like JR Ewing of Dallas at times! Jessica had a good thing going with Ken and she BLOWS it like Charlie Brown not kicking the old football. It’s just terrible…if Jessica and Ken stayed together, Olivia Davidson never would’ve died in the Earthquake of whatever year it happened! I can’t believe it’s the beginning of the end of Sweet Valley just about…a tear is forming in my eye to read such a great review of the books.

    [Reply]

  • Lorelai November 4, 2009 at 8:39 pm

    Confession time: when I was, uh, way older than I should’ve been, I totally stole this book from my school library because it was my favourite. That’s right, I committed a crime for the sake of SVH. That is how much I loved this damn series.

    Tragically, I never got to read the last (and from all accounts, most interesting) book in the series. Not doing so is my biggest life failure, so I can’t wait until next time!

    Ps I think my favourite part of this book is how Elizabeth is so shocked at Todd’s violence. Like, really? Has she met Todd? Their relationship begain with him punching out Rick Andover.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    You never read the one after this? I’m shocked! I’ll have the next one up tomorrow promptly at noon. Which I guess is three or four a.m. for you.

    I love, love, love that you stole an SVH book from the library, ha ha.

    [Reply]

    Lindsay Reply:

    Thank the gods I’m not alone is swiping a SVH book from the school library! I’ve committed that rime at least twice and I’m a titch ashamed

    [Reply]

  • Sadako November 5, 2009 at 2:01 am

    ““Justice,” Ken repeated, his voice ringing strong and clear in the cavernous warehouse.”

    Methinks they forgot the word vigilante…

    [Reply]

  • Kate November 6, 2009 at 11:33 am

    Wait a second… so slashing tires is way worse than beating the crap out of another human being? Nice, Liz. Good priorities there. Destruction of property vs. destruction of person.

    Also, why on earth does she try to intervene with the cops for taking Todd for assault and battery? Clearly I’m a lot more sensitive to violence than she is!

    [Reply]

  • LadyJ3000 May 27, 2010 at 6:33 am

    Ken is seriously whipped. She cheats on him in nearly every book and he keeps taking her back with open arms. She should have fitted him with a dog collar. I don’t think he would have minded.

    [Reply]

  • Amanda May 20, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    Hahaha I love these comments! Liz should have left Todd. He’s an idiot. And why does this book try to make the reader feel bad for Jess? “Her face was pale” “She was paralized in fear” Psshh, maybe if you weren’t such a cheater, you wouldn’t be so jumpy and guilty.

    [Reply]

  • Kylie90210 May 21, 2013 at 10:59 pm

    I still hate that Jess cheated on Ken, even if he was acting like a douche. And for Christian?! Ugh.

    [Reply]

  • Krista November 3, 2013 at 10:43 am

    “Liz is an artard.”

    God, this made me laugh way harder than it should have.

    [Reply]

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