Sweet Valley Twins Super Edition #1: The Class Trip

The Moral of the Story: What is this I can’t even…

The Big Deal: Class trip to the Enchanted Forest

Synopsis:

The sixth grade is going to a super cool theme park called the Enchanted Forest. Caroline Pearce wants to sit with Liz on the bus, but Liz hates the idea of listening to her gossip the whole way. Liz asks Jessica to sit with her and Jessica promises she will, but then she goes ahead and sits with Lila instead and Liz has to sit with Caroline after all. Liz spends the whole morning thinking about Jessica’s terrible betrayal.

As soon as they get to the park, Lila ditches Jessica when she runs into a cute guy she knows from camp or something. Feeling hurt, Jessica goes off to find Liz. Liz ignores her and gets on her favorite ride, King Abelard’s Castle, but then she spends the whole ride feeling guilty. She vows to make up with Jessica before she does anything else, but she can’t find her anywhere. After a while, she becomes convinced that Jessica must have disappeared on the castle ride, so she goes back there to find her.

When she gets to the castle, there are no ride attendants and there’s nobody in the queue. No problem, Liz will just use this handy rowboat to get across the moat to a secret door she never noticed before. She goes down a hallway and then falls down a hole, where she runs into a little girl who introduces herself as Princess Charity. Princess Charity is hiding from some bad guys who want to lock her up and make her a slave. The rest of her family has already been locked in a cage, so it’s up to Liz and Charity to rescue them.

Liz uses her camera’s flash to blind the bad guys, and Charity opens the cage while they’re distracted. The good guys escape and pick up their weapons, which have been thrown into a pile conveniently near the cage, and have a battle. Once order and goodness have been restored, someone asks Liz how she got away from the evil King Nestor. Liz deduces that Jessica must have been taken by him, and King Abelard tells her there’s a boy with a raft who can take her to Nestor’s kingdom.

The boy with the raft introduces himself as Tom Sawyer, and he tells her stories about Huck Finn and Injun Joe while he ferries Liz down the river. When they get to Nestor’s kingdom, they follow some footprints into a cave, where Liz immediately causes a cave-in. She and Tom are trapped, but then a kindly mouse gnaws on some grass and the rocks come tumbling loose. Now there’s a barrier between Liz and Tom. Tom goes back the way he came, and Liz continues on to the other end of the tunnel.

It’s night when she emerges, and she sees someone dragging Jessica up a moonbeam and into a cloud. The mouse from the cave comes along, introduces herself as Allegra, and encourages Liz to follow Jessica up the moonbeam path. Why not? They go through a gate and into a gray world where people are chained to the ground and forced to break rocks all day for the gray queen. While Liz tries to figure out how to break the magic chains holding Jessica prisoner, a manacle appears around her own ankle. Things are looking pretty grim, but then Johnny Buck shows up in a flying black limousine. He starts singing and all the chains disappear. The gray queen picks up Jessica and carries her through a door on the side of a boulder that immediately takes off flying into the air.

Liz and Johnny fly after them in Johnny’s flying limo, and Johnny starts singing again when they get close. Jessica tries to make a jump for the car, but then a witch comes out of nowhere and throws Jessica onto the back of her broomstick. Liz falls off the limo’s wing and into the Enchanted Sea, where she meets a sea serpent named Sidney. After a game of checkers played with seashells and pebbles, Sidney tells Liz that the witch who snatched Jessica is named Grisolda and she’s taken over Fairy Tale Land.

Liz catches a ride to Fairy Tale Land on the back of a friendly turtle. Since Grisolda’s occupation, it’s become known as Sorrowland. Rapunzel is bald, Peter Pan is a middle-aged accountant, and other fairy tale characters are equally miserable. Liz finds Grisolda’s gingerbread house and rescues Jessica from the stove, and then they laugh at the witch until she dies. Fairy Tale Land and all its inhabitants are all put back to normal, and they put the twins on a magical boat and send them home.

And then Liz wakes up. During the King Abelard ride, she and Amy knocked their heads together and Liz blacked out. She gets up and spends the rest of the day having a super awesome time with Jessica, who has apologized for sitting with Lila on the bus.

The absolute worst thing about this book is that I read it over and over again when I was a kid. What was wrong with me?

The Cover: Who’s that boy? And based on hairstyles, it would appear that Liz is the one wearing all that purple.

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Comments
  • Ann November 17, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    You have NO idea how many times I read this book as a child. Or maybe you do. Either way, this story is incredibly stupid. I can’t believe I read things like this and then grew up to be a lawyer. Maybe this explains our legal system. And also the ending to Lost.

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  • Sucky Stackhouse November 17, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    Oh freaking wow…what a horrible story!! The whole way through your recap, I was thinking “Please let this be a joke…tell me Shannon didn’t have to read this piece of crap and this is the real book.”

    Poor you 🙁

    And…did the cover-art dude not know that Jessica is the purple girl and Liz, honestly, can be best described as a beige type person?

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  • rachierach November 17, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    yay! welcome back! we missed you!

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  • HelenB November 17, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    Yeah, I kind of figured it was a dream stright away… didn’t they do the exact same thing in one of the SVH books? Except in that book I think Jessica died in Liz’s dream.

    Either way, I can’t believe they did the whole “…and then I woke up!” thing *twice*. And I can’t believe Liz even feels guilty over not wanting to put up Jessica’s crap even in a dream.

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  • MV November 17, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    ahahahaha I LOVED this book as a kid. I too read it so many times. I always wondered who that boy was. I’m not even sure that girl is supposed to be Lila, because on the covers of later books the girl with that same face is Ellen.

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  • Fear Street November 17, 2011 at 9:28 pm

    What.

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  • Jenn November 18, 2011 at 10:14 am

    OMG! I completely forgot about this book until I started reading your recap LOL. For some reason, it always felt like this one came later on, after they started doing the stupid crap, like the Big rip-off.

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  • Amiee November 21, 2011 at 2:37 am

    All I recalled from this one was was how she met Tom Sawyer. When you’re blacked out isn’t it just a sea of nothingness? The expression on the twin in the pink shirt is all Jessica!

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  • Sarah November 21, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    wow.
    I know age rarely ever plays a role in these books, but this storyline would have been much more fitting for an SVK book.

    Congrats on getting through this, it sounded awful.

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  • Audrey November 21, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    There is a theme park in my town called Enchanted Forest! That’s so weird… and creepy. I wonder if the writers knew about it?

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  • Anonymous November 22, 2011 at 10:17 am

    As series continuity goes – The twins ‘ second-grade also end up going on a class trip to The Enchanted Forest in the Sweet Valley Kids #43 – Jessica Gets Spooked.

    But as covers go -Does Aaron appear within this story at all? As I’ve always thought it to be him on the cover; based on how he’s always described as looking within the books. Having said though, it also looks an awful lot like Tom McKay as seen on the cover of Second Best: http://shannonsweetvalley.com/2011/08/24/sweet-valley-twins-16-second-best/

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  • swc/red November 22, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    what i want to know is where the hell is liz’s right hand 😀

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  • megan s November 25, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    wasn’t there another theme park story? but a different theme park?

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  • Claire November 26, 2011 at 10:49 pm

    What.The.F…

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  • Afrancis November 30, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    Dumbest. Book. Ever.

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  • Sadie B September 10, 2012 at 2:49 pm

    Did the ghost writers drop acid before writing this crap??

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    Shannon Reply:

    I hope so. Otherwise there’s just no excuse.

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  • Erica Chestnut November 11, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    I too read this book repeatedly as a child. Having just re-read it I did not really enjoy it and could not wait for it to be over. I always thought the other girl on the cover was Ellen and the boy was Ken Matthews. Also, there are actually several books where one of the twins will go to sleep and dream really weird things ie. the Christmas Ghost which was another that I loved as a child. Wonder how I’ll feel when I re-read that one.

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  • melissa November 17, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    i always wondered who the boy was too. and i also noticed jessica was not wearing purple. i dont think the artists always read the books LOL. the girl is ellen ritemen, i remember her from the book burried treasure. the boy looks like ken matthews but then isnt he really short?

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  • Kanna-Chan January 6, 2013 at 6:58 am

    I can’t understand how Ellen is considered one of the popular girls considering how stupid she is and the fact she has big ugly horse teeth. People in Sweet Valley get picked on for less.

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  • Kate March 22, 2013 at 7:39 am

    I thought this book was great when I was a kid. I must have been an idiot.

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  • Kanna-Chan February 27, 2015 at 5:47 pm

    I just noticed that Jessica and Elizabeth don’t really look that much alike. For one thing, Jessica’s forehead is higher and their hairlines are on opposite sides.

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  • Alex Kennedy July 9, 2016 at 11:35 am

    When I first read the title, I thought the content of the book would be different. My own question is why? I have not read it word for word because it was just so ridiculous and I did not enjoy it. Actually, when I was in the hospital, I purchased it from the hospital bookstore to read before my operation and I was so disappointed. I know that it sounds really sad, but I have been waiting for more than fifteen years to obtain a copy. I did not make a very robust effort. Thus, the find in the hospital was very serendipitous. The book was beyond silly.

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