Top Ten

I got an email a few days ago from a new reader named Jason. He’s looking to read a few Sweet Valley High books for nostalgia’s sake, but he’s not sure which ones to read.

I was wondering if you could do a quick post (or you could just respond to this email) of your top 10 SVH books.  I don’t have the money or the willpower to tackle the whole series again (but those girls definitely rate as my first official fag hags – how in the world I made it through elementary/middle school without getting beat up carrying around these pastel tomes I will never understand) but would love your advice on the best books to look for to satiate my need for a quick SVH fix.

Here you go, Jason.

  • 10. “R” for Revenge – Because it proves once and for all that grownups in Sweet Valley are just for show. They aren’t actually good for anything except being murderers.
  • 9. Out of Reach – The over-the-topness of Jade’s rebellion is what seals the deal for me on this one. And Ned Wakefield acts like a moron, so that’s a bonus.
  • 8. Lila’s Story – For some reason I can’t really explain, I read this one over and over when I was a kid. I think I kind of liked seeing Lila being brought down, but then I really liked seeing her save the day in the end.
  • 7. In Love With the Enemy – I’m not even sure what I like about this book. I think maybe it’s the jean jackets.
  • 6. Slam Book Fever – I like this one because it’s kind of nice to see Jessica get all tongue-tied around a boy. It’s also nice to see Liz make an ass of herself.
  • 5. Winter Carnival – Jessica dies! Granted, it was only a dream. But still.
  • 4. Family Secrets – The best part of this book is the ghostwriter’s feeble attempts at psychology.
  • 3. Two-Boy Weekend – Jessica’s flirting gets her stalked by a psycho and Liz gets shoved into the trunk of a car. How can you lose?
  • 2. Kidnapped by the Cult – The title says it all. It’s a cult!
  • 1. Playing With Fire – I cannot even express in words the effect this book had on my preteen brain. Bruce taking off Jessica’s bikini top…might as well have been porn to twelve-year-old Shannon.

So those are my favorites. Jason, I hope that gives you a starting point!

What are everyone else’s favorite SVH books?

Comments
  • Sadako April 24, 2010 at 6:36 pm

    Man, I envy you Sweet Valley fans. In BSC land the closest we got to risque were those really awkward Bart/Kristy make out sessions in Kristy + Bart. Though to be fair, they were twelve. Still I always wished we had gotten them aged up a bit so there could be some more sexin’ going on.

    [Reply]

  • HelenB April 24, 2010 at 6:59 pm

    “R for Revenge” and “Winter Carnival” definitely numbered among my favourites, too. SVH was at its best when it wasn’t even trying to make any kind of sense, but was just trolling its readers for the lulz.

    [Reply]

  • Erin April 24, 2010 at 8:14 pm

    “Murder in Paradise”, “Dear Sister”, and “A Night to Remember”!

    [Reply]

  • tia maria April 24, 2010 at 8:39 pm

    12 year old me thought that bit in Playing With Fire was totally scandalous too! I loved it!

    Other than that, “Murder in Paradise” just for being completely ridiculous, “The Perfect Girl” because Robin’s awesome, “A Night to Remember” because of all the drama, “Earthquake” for the same reason and “Model Flirt” just because…

    [Reply]

  • Shannon April 24, 2010 at 9:05 pm

    I should give honorable mentions to Power Play and Dear Sister.

    [Reply]

  • The One With... April 24, 2010 at 9:19 pm

    My favorites were the Evil Twin books, the mini-series from the prom where Jessica spikes Elizabeth’s drink and Sam dies, and the Wakefield’s of Sweet Valley.

    [Reply]

  • Lorelai April 24, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Oh my God, I’m so pleasantly surprised to see In Love With The Enemy in your top 10! If you recall, that whole miniseries was my favourite ever. Also, I second the Dear Sister honorable mention.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    I do remember! As I was putting it on the list, I was thinking how pleased you would be.

    [Reply]

  • Jessica Squits the Quad April 24, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    I liked Jessica Quits the Squad, The Pom Pom Wars (ha ha…I typed that as ‘pom pom wards’ the first time), V for Victory (Ken, Todd and Winston cheerleading in miniskirts = best moment ever), A Night to Remember until The Evil Twin (best miniseries!!), Slam Book Fever, On the Edge (poor Regina:( ), Jessica the Genius, Tall Dark and Deadly, Fashion Victim, R for Revenge, Fight Fire with Fire (that last moment with John Pfeifer…so awesome), and Earthquake. Earthquake was actually the first SVH book I read! If you want anyone to be an SVH fan, get them to read Earthquake first. It’ll have them crying and laughing even though they don’t know the characters!!

    [Reply]

  • svugirl April 25, 2010 at 12:00 am

    How did I miss a book where Jessica fake dies?? I’ve been neglected lol. Ok so in no paticular order, The evil twin, Return of the evil twin, Murder in paradise, R for revenge, Tall dark and deadly, Dance of death, kiss of a killer, camp killer, Kidnapped, Double jeopardy.

    [Reply]

  • megan s. April 25, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    I <3 Dear Sister!

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    Megan, this comment got caught in the spam filter. I have no idea why, but WordPress always thinks you’re trying to spam me!

    [Reply]

  • megan s. April 25, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    I don’t remember Winter Carnival…now I must go find out how Jessica dies! lol

    [Reply]

  • Lila April 26, 2010 at 10:29 am

    Don’t Go Home With John and Dear Sister–I just wish that Liz hadn’t regained her stick-in-the-mud personality before she and Bruce could have teh saix.

    [Reply]

  • Roger Patman April 26, 2010 at 11:53 am

    Love your blog, BTW…
    Here’s my favs…All Night Long (the cover alone is priceless), Say Goodbye (Todd leaves, ‘nuf said), Enid’s Story (Enid gets wasted and smokes pot..in general, she acts like a real teenager).

    [Reply]

  • Sandy April 26, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    Awww, this list made me miss Bruce sooo bad. :'(

    [Reply]

  • Amiee April 27, 2010 at 4:06 am

    Is it really lame I loved Bruce’s Story?

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    Really? I could barely stay awake through that one!

    [Reply]

  • Kristine April 27, 2010 at 4:53 am

    My favorite is “Taking Sides” because I love the Liz-Jeffrey French love team. I also think that “Operation Love Match” is hilarious.

    [Reply]

  • Martha April 27, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    Amy’s True Love, Wrong Kind of Girl, Too Good to Be True, Special Christmas, Dear Sister, and effin’ Spring Fever just for the hoedown value and those stupid outfits they wear on the cover! And oh yeah, Playing with Fire is priceless! And whatever the one was where Todd got mad because Liz wouldn’t do it with him.

    [Reply]

  • Amiee April 29, 2010 at 3:16 am

    Damn, embarrassing. Admittedly it was a while ago

    [Reply]

  • Darren May 1, 2010 at 12:06 am

    I loved:

    3 part arc where Ned and Alice nearly divorced and Ned goes into the Mike Brady of politics, and runs into corruption big time! (64-67)

    Steven thinking he sees a version of Tricia in Andrea and messed up his romance with Cara Walker

    Cara changing, fall for Steven

    Elizabeth and Todd reunite 2 part story

    Bruce’s parents nearly divorcing, 3 part arc, as I think Mrs. patman thought of what nearly was between her husband/Mrs. Wakefield.

    The New Amy Sutton as she’s like Jessica, then Amy eventually mellows, meets a decent boy in Barry.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    Haha, Mike Brady of politics.

    [Reply]

  • Karla October 5, 2010 at 10:27 am

    Oooh, “Lila’s Story” is my all-time favorite. I also love “Power Play,” “Alone in the Crowd,” and “On the Edge/Outcast.”

    [Reply]

  • Lelandria July 26, 2011 at 4:48 am

    Nightmare In Death Valley, Happily Ever After, Murder on the Line, Heartbreaker (Jess ending up boyless is priceless, Playing With Fire, Power Play (Robin sticking it to Jess and Bruce!), The Evil Twin, “V” For Victory, and Double Love

    [Reply]

  • Sarahbee August 18, 2011 at 12:25 am

    Any book that features lots and lots of Lila is on my top 10 list.

    [Reply]

  • Heather Mallone January 28, 2013 at 11:11 pm

    This blog needs to come with its own warning! Sipping coffee and reading is hazardous to the screen. Seriously the best reading blog I’ve come by and my god, the covers, pathetic titles and storylines – give me my cheerleaders, werewolves, and token teen issue explored in each book than this bunch of whiners in SVH SY! I can’t wait for you get to SVU – fab characters are back and there’s a sociopath!

    [Reply]

  • Post a comment

    Threaded commenting powered by interconnect/it code.