Posts Tagged ‘Bad Boyfriends’

Sweet Valley High #54: The Big Party Weekend

Friday, May 27th, 2016

SVT054The Moral of the Story: No consequences! Ever! Do whatever you want!

The Big Deal: Party at the Wakefield house

Synopsis:

The Wakefield parents are going to Mexico. Good riddance. They never do much parenting anyway, which is probably why Jessica and Steven assume the kids will get to look after themselves. They start planning a party for Saturday night and inviting all their friends. It’s not until the day before they leave that the parents tell them a very nice elderly woman named May Brown will be staying with the children. She’s a total stranger, but she comes “highly recommended” so I guess that’s safer than leaving the kids alone?

The parents leave Wednesday after the kids go to school, and when the twins get home that afternoon they find Steven and May glaring at each other in the kitchen. The old woman won’t let them have any snacks, they have to go to bed at nine, they only get one hour of TV a day, and she has the nerve to suggest the twins wear nametags so she can tell them apart. She’s a real bitch about all of it. The kids decide to get rid of her. They pull a few stupid pranks, like putting garlic in May’s coffee and setting her alarm clock to go off in the middle of the night, but all that gets them is the loss of phone privileges.

While all this is going on, Steven and the twins are also on a mission to clean out the garage and have a garage sale. They don’t get many customers, but Jessica manages to accidentally sell their mother’s antique wooden rose, given to her by her great-great-grandmother. So now Liz is freaking out, but Jessica is happy they’ll have money to buy stuff for the party she’s still convinced she’s going to have. Liz goes to every pawn shop in town trying to find the rose, but no luck.

In other news, Amy Sutton has a boyfriend all of a sudden. His name is Rob. Amy found him at the mall. Liz is surprised because she thought Amy liked Ken, but Amy says Ken is more interested in sportsball, and besides, Rob is in eighth grade and he’s really cute. Amy is showing signs of becoming her future self. Amy and Rob drag Todd and Liz on a double date to Casey’s, and Rob is a total ass.

Saturday rolls around and May is still the worst baby-sitter ever, so Steven and the twins put their latest plan into action. Steve tries to get himself a snack, which prompts May to yell at him about her no snacking rule, so Steven packs a bag and leaves the house, saying he’s never coming back. A few hours later, he calls May and tells her he got a ride to a friend’s house really far away, but the friend isn’t home and May needs to come get him. When she’s gone, Steven comes home from the supermarket with party supplies.

The party starts out okay, but it gets out of control pretty fast. Amy’s stupid boyfriend keeps putting on terrible music and turning it up too loud, there are people outside throwing food into the pool, and half the guests are people the Wakefields don’t even know. Amy tells Rob to get lost and then asks Ken to walk her home, so that’s all right. Then Aaron says he has to leave and just as he’s kissing Jessica good night for the first time ever, someone starts a food fight and Jessica gets hit in the face with a piece of bologna. Soon, the only people left are strangers who want to dance on the furniture. That’s when May comes home.

May is royally pissed, and she goes right upstairs and starts packing. The twins apologize and beg her to help them get rid of the kids downstairs. May relents and starts yelling, and pretty soon all the jerkface kids are gone. Steven and the twins apologize some more, and May apologizes to them for being so strict and terrible all week. They all call it even. The next morning, the kids wake up super early and clean the house while May is off on some errand. She comes back later with the antique rose Jessica accidentally sold. It turns out one of the pawn shop guys Liz talked to was at an auction in Big Mesa and he saw the rose. May went up there and bought it back. When the Wakefield parents finally come home, the kids are actually sad to see May leave.

So, to recap: the kids threw a raging party and did not get in trouble, and the antique rose is back where it belongs. Nobody is grounded or in jail. Everything is wonderful.

Quotes:

“I’m not wearing a nametag,” Jessica said. “You can tell us apart by our hair. I wear mine down, and Elizabeth wears hers up.”

Always and forever.

The Cover: Steven, with his expressionless face, is apparently sweeping the couch. Well done, young Steven.

The Sweet Life 4: Secrets and Seductions

Sunday, July 29th, 2012

Lila is finally a star. Now that she’s got Ken back and everyone hates Ashley Morgan, Lila is the most popular True Housewife and #lilafowler and #lilasbaby are trending topics on Twitter. There is that pesky fake pregnancy she’s got going on, but she plans to have a miscarriage at a dinner party given by Ashley, who wants to regain some of her lost popularity. Lila freaks out when she’s served raw fish and she accuses Ashley of trying to kill her baby. She puts on the dramatics and cries to Ken about Ashley all the way home, and then she fakes some cramps and locks herself in the bathroom.

Caroline Pearce hasn’t gotten hold of any good gossip lately, so she makes an appointment with Enid Rollins. Apparently, the gynecologist’s office is the best place to get some gossip. Enid isn’t happy to see Caroline, not after Caroline blogged about Enid’s affair with married pool salesman Brad Jones a few months ago. Lila is one of Enid’s patients, so Caroline asks how Lila’s been since the miscarriage. Enid is too cool to watch True Housewives and has no idea what Caroline is talking about. She says Lila can’t possibly have had a miscarriage because Enid saw her recently and she wasn’t even pregnant. Then Enid asks Caroline not to repeat that. Yeah, right. Caroline sells her story about Lila’s fake pregnancy to TMZ and it doesn’t take long before it’s all over the television. Ken manages to string more than three words together to tell Lila he’s done, he’s filing for divorce and he never wants to see her again. After he leaves, Lila throws up a few times and then realizes she hasn’t had a period in a while. She takes a test and yep, it turns out she is actually pregnant. Oh, Lila.

After Bruce disappears, Liz tells her editor, Tim White, she can’t run her Jane Doe interview because she just can’t do that to Bruce. Tim says he doesn’t want to have to fire her, so Liz quits her job. Why in the world did he ever put her on that story to begin with? Liz is still convinced Rick Warner is behind this whole thing and she needs someone to go undercover at Warner Gas headquarters. She decides – arbitrarily, it seems – that Aaron Dallas is the perfect choice. Aaron and Steve recently went to New York to get married, so I guess now Liz feels like Aaron is family and has to help her.

The Warner building is some big deal glass high rise, so Aaron pretends to be an architecture student doing research for his thesis. Nola the receptionist gives him a tour of the building, and when she leaves for lunch, Aaron hops on her computer and starts going through the employee records. He doesn’t find a Robin Platt, but he does find a Rose Pally who went on paid extended leave about a week before Bruce allegedly attacked Robin. Aaron emails everything to Liz, who sends it on to Annie and Jessica. But then Aaron finds out Rose Pally is not Robin Platt so we’re back to square one.

Liz tells Annie she thinks Bruce is probably at his villa in France, so Annie flies there to try to get Bruce to go home. Bruce doesn’t want to talk about the case and takes her to lunch instead. Annie is all googly-eyed by the wine and the wealth and the gorgeous Bruce Patman, and she thinks about the time they had sex in high school, back when she was Easy Annie. Meanwhile, Bruce realizes he needs to be “the old Bruce” if he’s going to win this thing and he figures the best way to get his cockiness back is to have sex with Annie. They tumble into bed and Annie keeps thinking “Should I? Shouldn’t I?” and the chapter ends and we don’t know if she did or not.

Jessica has gone back to work and she’s miserable. Tracy Courtright is in her old office and Jessica is in a cubicle. She hates her assistant, Emily, and Tracy keeps shooting down all her ideas. Jessica is too depressed to care, though. The only thing she cares about now is clearing Bruce’s name so he and Liz can get back together. She gets an email from Caroline one day with a link to another TMZ headline: “Liam’s New Flame, Jessica Wakefield, in Bitter Divorce Battle.” Jessica didn’t file for divorce, so Todd must have. Rather than call Todd to do some fact-checking, Jessica takes Michael Wilson to dinner, presumably to seduce him. And when Todd sees the news, he assumes Jessica has filed for divorce, so he goes ahead and has sex with Sarah. She’s been living with him this whole time but nothing has happened between them until now. As soon as Todd falls asleep, Sarah texts Caroline and lets her know she and Todd are officially a couple now. Sigh. Sarah’s the one who told Caroline that Todd was filing for divorce. She hates Jessica for getting her fired and so she’s going to steal Todd from her.

Quotes:

“Something wrong?” Robin asked, and the meanness and suspicion had disappeared from her voice. Now there was only worry.

Instantly, Elizabeth felt flooded with shame. She’d doubted Robin based on something less than a hunch.

I hate you, Elizabeth.

The Sweet Life

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

It might be a good idea to revisit the Sweet Valley Confidential recap before reading this one. I had to. And as always, spoilers await. Don’t read on if you don’t want to know what happens!

It’s been three years since the Wakefield-Wilkins wedding. Here’s what we’ve missed:

  • Jessica is vice president of George Fowler’s green marketing company VERTPLUS.NET (yes, it’s capitalized like that and yes, George Fowler’s name has been corrected since SVC). She’s found her calling as a PR genius, but she and Todd separated four months ago because, you know, women are supposed to stay home with the kids. They have a two-year-old son named Jake.
  • Liz and Bruce have been living together. Bruce is wealthier than ever and he runs a foundation or something.
  • Sweet Valley is now “just a suburb of L.A.” and Liz and Todd both write for the L.A. Tribune – Todd a sports column and Liz a blog.
  • Steven and Aaron have a four-month-old named Emma. A woman named Linda Carson was their surrogate mother and they don’t want to know whose sperm made the baby.
  • Lila is about to audition for True Housewives of Sweet Valley because what else would she be doing with her life? She’s still married to Ken.
  • Enid’s been having an affair with the husband of a patient.
  • Liz’s friend Liam from New York is a star in L.A. now and he’s in love with Jessica.

Let’s go ahead and get Lila’s business out of the way since it has nothing to do with the rest of the story and I know you’re all dying to know what she’s up to. She wants to be a “True Housewife” (think Real Housewives of Wherever) so her daddy will pay attention to her again. Ken is an NFL superstar and Lila figures it’s her turn to be famous. Ken occasionally packs a suitcase and acts like he’s ending the marriage, but he always comes back. Lila wins a spot as a True Housewife, and the first meet and greet is filmed at her house. There are three other women, and Lila figures the producers will love her if she acts the part of Rich Snob. So she spends the entire day saying mean and nasty things about Ken and being a bitch to the other women. Ken sees the footage that night and packs a bag and leaves. And that’s all the Lila this book has to offer. Not enough Lila! We’ll be seeing more of her in upcoming episodes, don’t worry.

Jessica finds out Todd has been seen around town with another Tribune reporter named Sarah Miller. She can’t resist Googling Sarah, and she finds some articles where Sarah has quoted Jessica without giving her credit. Fuck. That. Jessica sends the articles along with her original interviews to Sarah’s editor, Walt Tyndale. Two weeks later, Caroline tells her that Sarah’s been fired. Todd comes over to yell at Jessica for ruining Sarah’s life and accuse her of manipulating him into loving her. He says he wouldn’t be surprised if she had pretended to be Liz on purpose at that one party. After saying he’ll “fuck whomever I please,” he storms out in a huff and goes to Sarah’s. Sarah is totally baffled that her boyfriend’s wife is so mad at her over one little mistake. Clearly, she’s an idiot. She and Todd start making out, but Todd apologizes and leaves when Sarah tries to have sex with him.

That same morning, Bruce gets a call from his PA (personal assistant? public announcer? Port Authority?), Dean. One of the Patman Foundation’s summer interns is accusing Bruce of sexual assault. Liz knows Bruce wouldn’t do such a thing (because he’s changed since his sexual assaultin’ days!) and she’s convinced this all has something to do with Rick Warner. Rick recently gave in and let Bruce win a land deal for one of his foundations, and Liz thinks it’s suspicious that he gave in so easily. Whatever the case, things are looking pretty terrible for Bruce’s reputation.

Liz gets an urgent text from Jessica telling her to come over right away. Thinking Jessica might know something about this Bruce situation that’s all over the news, she rushes over there. Of course, Jessica just wants to cry about Todd. Liz lets her get it out of her system, and then she finally gets to talk about her own problems. To her credit, as soon as Jessica finds out what’s going on, she jumps into action, running out the door and yelling about crisis intervention.

Jessica talks to Bruce and his lawyer, Ben Bookman, and finds out there was an incident a while back at the Charm Club. Bruce says he was there to meet someone named Alan Bloom, but Alan never showed. While he was waiting, a girl came up to Bruce and started crying about her abusive father. Bruce tried to help her and get her to a women’s shelter, and then he felt sick and the owner let him take a nap in the office. When he woke up, the girl was gone. Jessica emails all these details to Liz, who calls Alan Bloom and finds out he never set up any meeting at the Charm Club. Then she tracks down the bartender. He tells Liz that Bruce got drunk and hit on the girl and she turned him down.

Jess takes a break from rescuing Bruce to go on a date with Liam. She’s convinced herself that Todd went and fucked Sarah (Jessica and Todd have filthy mouths) as soon as their fight was over, so she figures she might as well move on with her life, too. She accidentally leaves her cell phone at home, so she misses Todd’s many apologetic texts. She doesn’t see them until after she’s had sex with Liam. Well done, Jess.

Liz spends all day talking to Patman Foundation interns and worrying about how pretty they all are. She finally finds the right one, Robin Platt. She goes to Robin’s house and judges the shabby exterior before ringing the bell. She pretends to be a therapist sent by Robin’s priest to help her through this troublesome ordeal. When Robin lets her in, she judges the furnishings, too. She thinks it’s weird that there’s nothing feminine about the place and it makes her think again that Rick Warner is behind this. Then she gets sucked into Robin’s sad story.

Robin’s story: Bruce got drunk and complained to Robin about his lame girlfriend and their lousy sex life. She went to the bathroom and Bruce was waiting for her when she got out. He pushed her into the office and started trying to rip her clothes off, and Robin was able to knock him down and escape because he was drunk.

To Be Continued…

Quotes:

“Another half hour and I’d have put him to bed and he’d have missed seeing his mother for the whole goddamn day because her work was more important than her kid!”

“That’s so unfair!” She answered him in that same sizzle of words. “How many times do you miss putting him to bed?”

“I’m not his mother!”

I feel like Todd has always been the kind of guy who thinks mothers should all be of the stay-at-home variety. Remember that time his mom baked a cake for no reason at all? That’s what he wants, but he married a woman who probably can’t figure out a toaster oven.

It had been thirty years, and she still didn’t get how people, even ones who knew them well, could mix them up. Todd never did.

Yeah…except all those times he did.

“I know you don’t read it, but my blog is really edgy now.”

I’m sure it is, Liz. You are edginess personified.

“Kenny, it’s not me. I was just pretending to be a bitch.”

“Not pretending.”

Ken Matthews, loquacious as ever.

Jessica felt like she was on a mission. A fuck mission.

Oh, Jessica. You’re a little bit ridiculous.

My thoughts:

I think it’s awesome that Jessica has found a job she likes (and is good at!). She doesn’t say “like” and “so” as much as she did in SVC, but the habit isn’t completely broken. She’s still able to go out and do Jessica things because she has a superhero of a nanny, Liza, to take care of the kid. But all in all she seems to be the only character who’s grown and matured. Which is fucking bizarre.

Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

This is it, folks. The day we’ve all been waiting for. The day we find out exactly why Elizabeth Wakefield left Sweet Valley and why she cries when she orgasms. There are obviously spoilers here, so don’t read any further if you don’t want to know the whole story.

Y’all ready for this?

Here we go!

Elizabeth Wakefield has left Sweet Valley and is now living in New York City, working for a crappy online magazine that nobody’s ever heard of. When our story opens, Liz and her boss, David Stephenson, are returning to Liz’s apartment after grabbing a post-workday dinner. Liz thinks David is handsome enough, but she doesn’t really want to sleep with him because he made her leave the tip at the restaurant. Get over yourself, Liz, it wasn’t even a date. The phone is ringing when they come in, but Liz lets the machine pick it up. It’s Jessica, begging Liz to talk to her.

Liz ignores Jessica and gives David a glass of wine. He asks whose voice that was on the answering machine and marvels at how much it sounded like Liz. Liz considers sleeping with him to get him to stop asking questions, but in the end the tip thing just bothers her too much and she tells him she’s tired and kicks him out. Once he’s gone, she curls up on her couch and feels sorry for herself.

FLASHBACK! We’re suddenly treated to a present-tense-first-person account of the day Todd Wilkins asked Jessica out back in high school. It’s kind of weird.

PRESENT DAY Back in Sweet Valley, Jessica is whining to Todd about Liz not answering any of her calls, texts, emails or Facebook friend requests. There’s kind of a lot of nonsense, but I gather that Liz and Todd were engaged at some point and Jessica slept with Todd. Then there’s another weird first-person-present-tense passage. It’s the exact same scene from before, this time from Jessica’s point of view. Anyway, Todd and Jessica are now living together and are going to be married in four weeks. Todd writes a successful sports column and the two of them spend most of their time trying to avoid the judgmental stares of their friends.

Todd and Jessica go to a party at Lila’s house, and we learn the latest about all our old faves:

  • Lila and Ken Matthews are in the middle of getting a divorce, but Ken is apparently still at the house most of the time. Ken is a successful NFL star. Lila doesn’t work, of course.
  • Caroline Pearce is a successful real estate broker and a cancer survivor. She’s still a big gossipmonger.
  • Jeffrey French is a successful dentist and is married to someone whose name Jessica can’t remember.
  • Enid Rollins and A. J. Morgan are having an affair or something and it’s bad for their image, but I don’t know why.
  • Robin Wilson is a successful caterer and restaurant critic, but somehow manages to keep herself slim.

You’ll notice that with the exception of A. J. and Enid, everyone’s life has the word successful in it. Sweet Valley is magic.

Everyone seems surprised to see Toddica, but Caroline is the only one who actually dares to ask about Elizabeth. Instead of answering, Jessica tells Caroline what a nosy bitch she is. Then she turns on Lila and hollers at her for inviting her to a party Caroline was going to attend, accusing her of wanting her there only for the drama.

All of Jessica’s chapters are like so infused with instances of like and so and they so make me want to like stab my eyes out.

Meanwhile, Liz goes to some crappy theater to interview William Connolly, a playwright who is currently auditioning actors for his debut play. He acts like a jackass and hardly even looks at Liz, but when he finally does, Liz freaks out a little because he looks exactly like Todd. Sigh. Of course he does. His resemblance to Todd throws Liz down memory lane and she thinks about a time in college when she was sick and made Jessica go to a party with Todd. As far as she knows, it’s the only time they spent any time alone. I guess that whole thing after the prom doesn’t count. And, of course, Liz doesn’t know about the other stuff.

Coincidentally, Todd and Jessica are also thinking of that party in college and…

FLASHBACK – COLLEGE, SENIOR YEAR Jessica doesn’t really want to go to the party, but Todd is the guest of honor and Liz really wants him to go. Neither Todd nor Jessica has any fun at first, but people keep assuming Jessica is Liz so she and Todd pretend to be a couple and have a good time tricking people. When they get in the car to leave, they apparently forget they were just pretending and they start making out like crazy. They eventually end up at the apartment Todd and Winston share. Winston isn’t home, so Todd goes ahead and has sex with his girlfriend’s twin sister. God, what a fucked up piece of fuck this guy is. Jessica’s wrong too, of course, but if I’ve accomplished nothing else with this blog, I know I’ve at least established that Jessica is insane.

For the next month, Todd and Jessica meet every day at a diner nobody they know ever goes to. They don’t have sex again, but it’s still an affair. The guilt finally gets to be too much for Jessica and she breaks it off.

PRESENT DAY Elizabeth runs into Will Connolly at the bar across the street from the theater. They both get a little tipsy and end up talking. Will isn’t really the jerkface he’s made himself out to be, and Liz thinks it’s okay to like him because his eyes are blue and not brown like Todd’s. They introduce themselves to the gorgeous Irish bartender (Liz mentions that her cheating twin would go crazy for him) and then Will invites Liz back to his apartment. They make out for a minute.

Liz’s mother calls that night and tells Liz she’d like her to come home for her grandmother’s eightieth birthday party. (She would also like Liz to come to Jessica’s wedding because she’s a fucking idiot.) Liz tells her there’s no way in hell she’s going to sit through a dinner with Todd and Jessica. Then she gets to thinking that it would really show those bastards if she came home with a new man. She calls Will and asks him if he wants to go. He says he can’t get away, but jokingly suggests Liz take Liam the bartender and try to make Jessica fall in love with him. Liz doesn’t take it as a joke.

FLASHBACK – EIGHT MONTHS AGO Jessica has married some guy named Regan and they’ve been traveling the world. It’s been about six months since the wedding, and that means it’s about time for Jessica to move on. Not one to waste time, she decides she has to leave Regan immediately. She’s in France, but she calls Liz, who tells her to just come home and stay with her. Todd isn’t super happy about this, but he agrees to be civil.

In this flashback, we learn that brother Steven married Cara Walker, but he apparently has frequent affairs and at this moment might be involved with Lila. What a tool. We also learn that nobody likes Winston anymore because he “changed radically” after making a bunch of money.

PRESENT DAY Liz goes to the bar and insinuates herself into Liam’s life. They hit it off after Liz finds out Liam’s parents live in L.A. and he owes them a visit soon. After about five minutes of friendship, Liam agrees to schedule his visit so it coincides with Liz’s grandmother’s party and he can be her date.

Jessica goes out for a friendly drink with one of her coworkers and wonders if she should hook up with this guy instead of Todd and then she could have Elizabeth back in her life. But alas, her love for Todd is too strong to be denied. Then she thinks about when she came back from France and lived with Todd and Liz for a while.

FLASHBACK – EIGHT MONTHS AGO Todd is working from home and the house is beginning to seem very small. Jessica and Todd try to avoid each other, but he gets on her nerves one day and she goes to the beach. That’s where she sees her brother in a loving embrace with…Aaron Dallas. Yep, Aaron is gay now and so is Steven. Steve asks Jessica not to tell anyone, but she thinks she’ll be doing him a favor if she tells Cara. Oh, Jessica. This is why you’re the bad twin. Well, this and the whole stealing-your-sister’s-fiancé thing.

PRESENT DAY Liz has lunch with Will and tells him she’ll be taking Liam with her to Sweet Valley. Will was only joking when he suggested getting Liam to seduce Jessica and he does not approve. Liz, who has been telling herself that she’s only bringing Liam home so she’ll have some company, gets defensive and actually says, “fuck you,” and storms out of the pub. Nice. She talks to Bruce Patman on the phone (they’re best friends now) and tells him she’ll be bringing a friend home for her grandmother’s party. Bruce gets a little weird. Liz is irritated and Bruce hangs up on her. Then we get to spend some time in Bruce’s head. And wouldn’t you know it? He’s in love with Liz!

FLASHBACK – EIGHT MONTHS AGO Bruce and Liz became friends a few years ago when Bruce’s parents were in a car accident. Liz came to the hospital every day for moral support. (Both Patman parents wound up dying.) Bruce has always known about Todd and Jessica’s affair in college (he saw them together at the diner), but he didn’t want to tell Liz because it would hurt her. But now that Jessica is staying with Todd and Liz, and Liz wants to set a wedding date, Bruce thinks it might be time to clue her in. He takes Liz out for pizza (I believe the pizza place used to be the Dairi Burger, but now it’s called Napkin) and tries to get up the courage to break her heart, but just then Ken Matthews comes running in to tell them that Winston is dead.

What the frak?

Meanwhile, Steven goes to Liz’s house to yell at Jessica for outing him to Cara. He calls her a selfish bitch and then leaves. Jessica starts crying and Todd hugs her to comfort her, and OF COURSE they start kissing. That’s when Liz comes home, crying about Winston. Todd and Jessica manage to cover up pretty well and Liz doesn’t notice anything is amiss, but Bruce is giving them the hairy eyeball.

PRESENT DAY Liz flies into LAX, where she’ll meet Liam. She’s going to change at the airport and drive directly to the club for the party. On the flight, she remembers – FLASHBACK! Winston’s funeral. Winston got super drunk and fell off his balcony. People are sad, but Winston had turned into such a total misogynistic jackass that most people are mourning the kid he used to be. Jessica starts looking at Liz intensely and yapping about forgiveness and junk. Liz thinks it’s weird, but figures it’s just funeral stuff.

PRESENT DAY Jessica is getting ready for “Grandmommy’s” party (ugh, grandmommy?) and thinks about the day Liz found out about her and Todd.

FLASHBACK Which is totally lame. Jessica’s husband shows up, I guess to talk to her, but she’s afraid of him so she asks Todd to be in the room. Regan walks in and immediately accuses Jessica of sleeping with Todd. I don’t know why. Words are exchanged and the boys start scufflin’. Liz comes home and breaks up their fight. Regan yells at her and says there’s something going on behind her back, and then he leaves. Liz asks Toddica what Regan was talking about and Jessica says he’s just crazy jealous, which seems reasonable. But Liz has one of those moments where she suddenly realizes how blind she’s been. She calls them cheating liars and storms out.

And that’s it, that’s how she found out. Maybe I’m sick in the head, but I was really kind of hoping she’d find them in bed together or something. Something more exciting than a “sudden realization”.

PRESENT DAY Dinner at the country club seems like it might be okay at first. The twins manage to ignore each other for the most part, but Liz is a little irritated that Liam seems completely smitten with Jessica. She was supposed to fall for him, not the other way around. He hangs on her all night, which pisses Todd off. Liz can’t help but smirk when Toddica start arguing, and the smirk gets Jessica going. Pretty soon, Liz is yelling at Todd, Steven is yelling at Jessica, Bruce and Aaron are telling people to shut up, and Alice is trying to keep everyone from killing each other. She yells at Ned to “bring out the fucking cake.” Grandmommy Robertson is the only one not yelling. When Liz leaves to go back to New York, Todd and Jessica aren’t speaking to each other, and Liz is pissed at Liam for flirting with Jessica so much.

Liz still has to interview Will for her job, and she can tell he wants to apologize for accusing her of being crazy for revenge. She doesn’t want him to do that because then she’ll have to say he was right. So she does the interview and then goes back to his place and has sex with him. I’m not sure why she feels like she always has to have sex with a guy to make him shut up.

She gets home from Will’s to find Jessica asleep outside her apartment door. Jessica says she’s left Todd and wants Liz’s forgiveness. It only takes about thirty seconds of Jessica crying for Liz to forgive her. And just like that, they’re talking everything through. Liz, who only needed to find a new man to realize she really doesn’t love Todd anymore, tells Jessica to go back to Todd. Jessica leaves the next morning and Todd is waiting for her outside Liz’s apartment building. He gives her a big hug and they go home to Sweet Valley. Liz meets Will later and tells him everything. He still thinks she’s the bee’s knees and they go back to Liz’s.

Will and Liz become friends with benefits, and things are going really well. Her article comes out and she gets another job offer from a magazine. By the time Will’s play opens, Liz has decided she’s not in love with Will, but they have a really good friendship. On opening night, Will’s parents show up with the fiancé Will left behind when he came to New York to be a famous playwright. It’s clear to Liz that Will and Wendy love each other. She’s happy for them.

When Liz goes home for Jessica’s wedding, Bruce tells Liz he’s selling his house and moving to New York because he’s in love with someone who lives there. Liz is an idiot and Bruce has to spell it out for her that Liz is the one he loves. They go up to Bruce’s bedroom where they get naked and we learn that Liz has “taut nipples.”

EPILOGUE: FOR ALL SWEET VALLEY FANS OF OLD

Everyone in the world shows up to Jessica’s wedding, and Francine gives us a little bio of what’s been going on with all our old friends…

  • Bill Chase – Lost his right leg to a shark during a triathlon three years ago. Now teaches surfing to handicapped teens. Married someone named Lianne Kane.
  • Roger Collins – Mr. Collins has quit teaching and is a successful writer. His son is now nineteen and named Sam (pretty sure he used to be named Teddy).
  • Jeffrey French – Lila’s date for the wedding. Now Francine tells us he’s single, even though Jessica talked to his wife in the second chapter.
  • Dee Dee Gordon – Working as an artist
  • Charlie Markus – Married Annie Whitman. He writes for a car magazine but wants to be a novelist. He is referred to as the boy who “saved” Annie, but I think Francine has confused him with Ricky Capaldo.
  • Betsy Martin – An alcoholic who sleeps around. I guess art school wasn’t all it was cracked up to be.
  • A. J. Morgan – Sells shoes at the Nike store in the mall.
  • Roger Barrett Patman – A successful Hollywood producer. He married Zoe Jones, a rock star.
  • Caroline Pearce – Caroline’s cancer is in remission these days. She puts out a gossip blog six days a week.
  • Enid Rollins – Enid is a successful gynecologist, but she’s arrogant and extremely right-wing. She plans to run for city council, and that’s why she wants to keep her relationship with A. J. a secret. She doesn’t think a shoe salesman is an appropriate partner for someone as important as she is.
  • Nicky Shepard – I don’t know why we care about this guy since he was really only important in one book, but Francine tells us he hit rock bottom two years ago and is now living in Utah, teaching at an AA center.
  • Cara Walker – She and Steven are now divorced, but she still remains friendly with Ned and Alice.
  • Annie Whitman – Annie is a lawyer in San Francisco. She and Charlie have a two-year-old boy.
  • Robin Wilson – Catered Jessica’s wedding. She’s also senior editor of Bon Appétit.
  • George Warren – A representative for a Silicon Valley company. Lives in England.

We get a rundown of some dead folks. Winston, Regina and Tricia are mentioned, but strangely, Olivia Davidson is not. Maybe because of her zombie appearance in SVU. Surprisingly, Suzanne Devlin is among the dead. We’re told she returned to Sweet Valley six years after the Mr. Collins scandal, but she had multiple sclerosis and crashed her car after taking her medication with champagne. Wait, I thought she just had mono. I’m confused.

And now the Wakefields…

  • Ned Wakefield – Still a successful lawyer. He’s so awesome that even the mayor came to the wedding.
  • Alice Wakefield – Now has her own interior design company. It is, of course, successful. Alice was diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago, but she had a lumpectomy and some radiation and is good to go.
  • Steven Wakefield – Steve and Aaron are living together and hoping that someday they’ll be able to get married.
  • Elizabeth Wakefield – Liz was Jessica’s maid of honor. I think that’s gross, but what do I know? She and Bruce are totally in love.
  • Jessica Wakefield – Was fifteen minutes late for her own wedding because, as you know, nothing starts until she gets there.

Quotes:

Unless, of course, she were to arrive, unexpectedly, at her grandmother’s party on the arm of a handsome New York playwright. That certainly wouldn’t be pathetic.

It’s a little pathetic if he looks exactly like the ex-boyfriend you’re so eager to show up.

…its main financial backing had come from Richard Fowler, Lila’s father.

Didn’t his name used to be George?

One time when we were in high school, this lunatic madman came at her with a sledgehammer. I jumped in between them, and I didn’t even have a weapon. All I had was crazy fury and determination to save my sister’s life.

What’s funny is that I thought I would try to give you guys a link to the book this is from and make a snarky comment about it, but the twins escaped death so many times that I don’t know which book to link to.

I’m in my black Porsche convertible, the last vestige of the old Bruce that I can’t give up.

1BRUCE1 is still alive, people!

“I remember once I had this thing with Caroline way back when we were in the seventh grade. She told everyone that I let A. J. Morgan touch my breast.”

That’s so weird, you know, because he didn’t move to Sweet Valley until junior year.

She was twenty-seven years old and this was the first person she’d ever told to go fuck himself. What was wrong with her?

Oh, Liz. You’ve just been suffering from Valleyitis. Folks from the SV don’t say fuck. Except Alice Wakefield, apparently.

The Cover: Is boring. I really do like the endpapers though.

 

The End.

Sweet Valley High Senior Year #46: Prom Night

Monday, May 31st, 2010

The Moral of the Story: If you want to have a bad time, go to prom with Trent.

The Big Deal: Prom at the beach!

Synopsis:

Liz and Jeff: The whole gang gets together at House of Java and Andy starts talking about his plans to go to New York next year to try his hand at stand up comedy. Jeff starts going on and on about how horrible New York is and how glad he is that he decided not to go to NYU. Liz is really irritated with Jeff these days because he’s acting so weird, but he can’t figure out why she’s so upset.

Jeff has begged Liz to let him write an article for The Oracle, but he can’t come up with a good story idea. He eventually decides to recycle an essay from last year, and he goes over to Liz’s with a report about The Catcher in the Rye. Liz recognizes it because Mr. Collins read it in front of the class last year. She doesn’t know what Jeff’s deal is, but she tells him she can’t put a book report in the newspaper and she’ll just have to call Maria to see if she has anything to fill the space. Jeff stays up all night writing an article about the pressure seniors feel to choose a career path, and he gives it to Liz the next morning. She says it’s perfect.

Andy and Dave: Dave is going to school in New York next year and he’s acting kind of weird about Andy joining him. Then when they go to get their tuxes for prom, Dave doesn’t seem to want the clerk to know he and Andy are going together. Andy gets pissed and starts yelling at Dave in the parking lot. He says if Dave is ashamed or embarrassed by him, then maybe he just shouldn’t go to the prom with him. Dave says that’s fine and drives away. Andy tells Six all about it, and she says she and Andy should go together. Andy sends Tia an email about how bummed he is to not be going with Dave, and Tia forwards the email to Dave and tells him to come to the prom.

Tia and Trent: There’s a policy in place that says only SVH seniors can be elected prom king and queen, which means nobody whose date is from another school can be elected. Trent decides he wants to make Tia’s prom super special, so he anonymously gets on the SVH virtual bulletin board and proposes a policy change. The response is overwhelming and the change is made. Meanwhile, Tia is wondering why everyone cares so much about something so stupid. She’s totally not interested in being prom queen.

Trent and Jeremy go to the One Stop Prom Shop (ugh) to get their tuxes. Jeremy has a swatch of fabric from Jessica’s dress and a picture of the flowers she wants for her corsage, and Trent has nothing. He makes fun of Jeremy for being whipped and says he’s taking care of all of this on his own to show Tia how much he cares. When the saleslady asks Trent what kind of corsage he wants, he says he wants a wreath for Tia’s hair. Jeremy and the saleslady try to talk him out of it, but Trent is sure he knows what he’s doing. Then he decides that instead of riding in the limo with everyone else, he and Tia will get their own. Unfortunately, all the smaller size limos are taken, so Trent ends up reserving a horse drawn carriage.

Trent makes another post on the SVH bulletin board, asking for people to vote for him and Tia as king and queen. Tia freaks out. She calls Trent and yells at him, telling him she does not want to be queen. She also tells him she wanted to pick out tux and corsage stuff together. Trent feels dumb.

Pre-Prom Madness: The girls spend all day at the Wakefield house getting ready, and then Jeff and Jeremy show up. Liz and Jeff go to Jeff’s car to get her corsage, and a bunch of papers fall out of the glove box. Among them is a rejection letter from NYU. Because the glove box is where you keep stuff like that. Liz realizes Jeff’s new look and personality are all because of the rejection, and she’s super pissed that he didn’t just tell her the truth.

Trent is really late and Tia is getting nervous. She’s horrified when he shows up in a horse drawn carriage, and even more horrified when he tries to put the wreath of flowers on her head. Luckily, Jessica pushes him out of the way before he can do too much damage to Tia’s hairdo. Everyone is supposed to go to a pre-prom party at Maria’s (huh, remember Maria?), and Tia is surprised when the carriage pulls up in front of the fanciest restaurant in town instead of Maria’s house. She manages to step in horse manure, and everyone in the restaurant gives her dirty looks because she smells like shit. She manages to clean up her shoe and get rid of the wreath, but then the whole menu is in French, so Tia isn’t quite sure what she’s ordering. She’s disgusted when the waiter brings her a whole fish, scales and all. Trent’s food doesn’t look much better, so they just pay the $120 check and leave.

At the Prom: Six goes off to try to talk to this senior guy she has a crush on, but he shoots her down. Andy finds her and comforts her, and she leans over to give him a kiss on the cheek. She misses and gets his lips instead, and that is, of course, when Dave finds them. He’s a little freaked out, but Andy chases after him and they make up and everything is great. The only reason Dave didn’t want Andy to come to New York with him was because he was worried Andy would resent him or something if his comedy career didn’t work out.

Tia and Trent are crowned king and queen. Tia reluctantly gets up onstage, but starts crying when she’s told they’ve won a gift certificate to the French restaurant from earlier. Trent tries to kiss her, but she walks offstage. Melissa says something snotty because she’s pissed she and Will didn’t win, and Tia throws her crown at her before storming off. Tia tells Trent she hates that he changed all their prom plans, Trent apologizes, and Tia eventually sees the humor in the situation.

Liz spent all of Maria’s party glaring at Jeff, and he finally tries to talk to her in the middle of the dance floor. She tells him he’s changed and she doesn’t like the new him. They break up, and Liz goes for a walk up the beach. And who should she find sitting on the beach and playing his guitar? That’s right, Conner. Todd’s car broke down, so Conner gave him and Megan a ride to the prom. Conner and Liz chat for a minute, and then she asks him to dance. They dance…and then they kiss. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

Quotes:

“Mmmm. Thanks,” she said, tearing off a piece of the bagel and plopping it into her mouth.

Ew! Why can’t these ghostwriters talk about food without making me want to throw up?

The Cover: Tia certainly looks happy for someone having the worst prom experience ever.

Sweet Valley High Senior Year #37: Be Mine

Monday, May 10th, 2010

The Moral of the Story: Couples in Sweet Valley always live happily ever after on Valentine’s Day.

The Big Deal: Valentine’s Day

Synopsis:

It’s Valentine’s Day in Sweet Valley and everyone’s having issues.

Maria and Ken: Maria and Ken are both broke, so they’ve decided not to exchange presents. So when Maria finds a huge bouquet of flowers on her desk, she freaks out and goes crazy trying to think of something she can give Ken in return. She hears a guy talking about some concert tickets he won’t be able to use, and since it’s a band Ken likes she decides to buy them from him for a hundred dollars. Ken, who doesn’t know anything about the bouquet of flowers, is now freaking out because he didn’t get anything for Maria, as per their pact. So he leaves school at lunchtime and buys a pair of earrings Maria admired last week. Now Maria is freaking out AGAIN, so she decides to have some balloons delivered to Ken at school. They finally see each other that night for their date, and Maria realizes the flowers she got that morning had been placed on the wrong desk; they were really for the girl who sits next to her. Maria and Ken have a good laugh and live happily ever after.

Jade and Evan: Evan isn’t all about the love these days because of his parents’ divorce, and he’s just so glad he’s got a gal like Jade who doesn’t get all girly about stuff like Valentine’s Day. Of course, when he sees Jade all decked out in red and pink and going gaga over some other girl’s candygram, he realizes she really does care. He decides he can’t deal with that, so he just avoids her all day. Jade is crushed, but her mother tells her she should just tell Evan she wants to celebrate. So she shows up at his house that night with all his favorite gross health food treats. He apologizes for being a jerk and they live happily ever after.

Tia and Trent: Tia is getting flowers and stuff from a secret admirer. She assumes it’s all from Trent, and she’s pissed that he won’t leave her alone. At lunch, she announces she’s going to drive out to Big Mesa and tell Trent to back off, but Jessica tells her not to. Apparently, all that stuff was really from Jessica. She was just trying to get Tia and Trent back together. Tia is embarrassed and kind of disappointed to find out Trent wasn’t actually trying to get her back. But don’t worry! She gets home that night and finds Trent on her front porch with a bouquet of flowers. They kiss and then live happily ever after.

Andy and Dave: Andy is all depressed because the first guy he’s ever liked doesn’t want to come out of the closet and now he has no valentine. He goes to the park at lunchtime and runs into none other than Dave. They sit there talking for a minute, but then Dave sees some guys from his school and acts all weird. It’s clear to Andy that Dave doesn’t want anyone to think they’re at the park together, and it bugs him so he leaves. Dave shows up at his house that night. He apologizes for being weird at the park and says he’s going to tell his father he’s gay because he really cares about Andy. Andy and Dave live happily ever after.

Melissa and Will: Will has made all these plans for Valentine’s Day and he’s pissed when Melissa says she has to cancel because of a family dinner. Actually, she’s just planning to surprise him at the Tribune office after school, but Will doesn’t know that and he’s pissed. So pissed that he doesn’t think twice before making out with that Erika bitch. And wouldn’t you know it? That’s when Melissa walks in. She can’t believe her perfect boyfriend would do such a thing. Come on, Melissa, it’s not like he hasn’t done it before.

Some creep: There are all these scenes from an unnamed guy’s point of view. He keeps checking out some chick, also unnamed, and thinking about how much he wants to get back together with her. He leaves the mysterious girl a note asking her to meet him at First and Ten that night at six.

Elizabeth: Liz gets the anonymous guy’s note, which says he has a past with her. She can’t think of any ex-boyfriend she’d like to get back together with, but she decides to go to First and Ten anyway. When she gets there and sees who her secret admirer is, she gets really happy. In an attempt at suspense, the ghostwriters have decided not to tell us who it is just yet, but it’s someone Liz apparently didn’t even consider when trying to figure out which ex might want her back.

Quotes:

Couldn’t be, she reasoned. Fairy-tale plot twists weren’t written into the Elizabeth Wakefield life story.

LOLOLOL

The Cover: There is something terribly cheesy about this cover. I hate it.

Sweet Valley High Senior Year #19: It’s My Life

Monday, March 29th, 2010

The Moral of the Story: Conner sucks.

The Big Deal: Conner’s gig

Synopsis:

Conner’s a moody little bitch these days and he’s taking it out on his liver. He’s got a gig coming up at a club called The Shack, and the only way he can calm his rattled nerves is with vodka. He gets falling down drunk one night and goes to school the next day with a hangover. All his friends ask him what’s wrong and of course he gets all pissed off at them because, as I said, he’s a moody bitch. Tia wants to talk to someone about Conner and the only person she can think of is Angel. When she calls him, he tells her he has a new girlfriend. Tia hangs up the phone and goes to Andy’s. He lets her vent for a while, and then he tells her what he told Maria and the twins that morning, that he might be gay. Tia gives him a hug and feels shitty for going on and on about her stupid problems while Andy’s been dealing with this life-altering thing.

Tia finds Conner one night drinking at the beach. She tells him she’s worried about him and sort of threatens to tell Liz about the drinking. Conner says their friendship is over if she does that. She goes to Liz anyway and says she’s worried about Conner’s drinking, but Liz tells her she’s being paranoid. Conner makes up some lie to explain to Liz why he’s not talking to Tia.

Jade Wu is really obnoxious. There’s a bit about her mother going out with a different guy every night and almost never being home (did she divorce the tyrannical Mr. Wu?), so I guess I’m supposed to feel sorry for Jade, but I just don’t. Jeremy is halfway to falling in love with her, but Jade doesn’t think twice before accepting Josh Radinsky’s invitation to “study” with him after school. Lila overhears this and gets mad because she used to date Josh. Jade does a lot of eye rolling and can’t figure out why everyone is so uptight about their ex-boyfriends.

Lila goes to House of Java and tells Jessica that Jade is cheating on Jeremy. Jessica isn’t sure if she should believe Lila, but she overhears Josh the next morning talking about how he hooked up with Jade. Jessica confronts Jade, and Jade tells her to mind her own business. Jessica tells Jeremy that Jade is cheating on him, and of course he gets mad at Jessica and accuses her of lying because she’s jealous.

There’s some pointless crap about Will and Melissa. They’re planning to go to the same college next year and live together off campus, but Will really wants to go to Michigan and Melissa doesn’t. A football scout from Michigan comes and watches Will play and then tells him he can pretty much get a free ride. When Will tells Melissa, she says she wants to go wherever he’s going and she’s already filling out her application to Michigan. No drama, no excitement. I so don’t care.

Everyone goes to Conner’s gig at The Shack. Liz tells Tia she thinks whatever reason Conner gave her for their fight is stupid and they should just make up. Tia is pissed that Conner lied about her, so she goes backstage with Liz to wish Conner luck. He’s obviously drunk back there, and Liz and Tia try to tell him he shouldn’t go on. He yells at them both and tells them to leave him alone. Liz and Tia sit in the audience worrying that Conner’s going to make a fool out of himself, but he actually sings and plays just as well as he always does. The girls are shocked and wonder if they were mistaken, but Conner yells at them after the show about them needing to back off and quit trying to mother him. He tells the guys he wants to go hang out at Crescent Beach, so off they go.

Jeremy and Jade went to the show together, but Jessica sees Jade talking to Josh. (Everyone’s name in this storyline starts with J. That’s annoying.) Josh wants Jade to ditch Jeremy and join him at Crescent Beach, and Jade accepts. Jade has Jeremy take her home, claiming she has to get to bed because she has an early morning. Jeremy drops her off, and then goes home to find Jessica waiting on his doorstep. She says she can prove Jade is cheating if he’ll just come with her. He goes just so she’ll shut up, and then throws a fit when he sees Josh and Jade together. He tells both Jessica and Jade that he never wants to see either of them again.

Conner’s getting mad because his friends are trying to get him to go home. He climbs up on some rocks and promptly falls off of them. He hears someone say they need to call an ambulance and only then does he notice he’s bleeding from the head.

The Cover: “I’m Conner. I’m deep and brooding. Nobody understands me, so I clench my jaw and make sure everyone knows how miserable I am.”

Sweet Valley High Senior Year #17: Backstabber

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

The Moral of the Story: If you make out with your best friend, you’ll become an alcoholic.

Synopsis:

After being caught in Tia’s bed, Conner goes to the Wakefield house and bangs on the door, begging Liz to let him explain. She finally opens the door and he says nothing happened, all he and Tia did was kiss. Liz, who I guess didn’t see the kiss, slams the door in his face. Tia comes over later to apologize, and she’s all hurt when Liz says Conner told her the kiss meant nothing. Oh, Tia, really? Conner goes home and his mom yells at him for staying out all night. Ever since she came back from rehab, she’s been doing this “involved mom” thing and Conner can’t stand it because he’s used to doing whatever he wants. His mother leaves, and Conner goes out to the garage and starts throwing things around. He finds a bottle from his mom’s drinking days, has a drink and then tells himself he’s not an alcoholic like his mom.

Jessica gets promoted to assistant manager at House of Java, but she’s a little upset when she finds out Jeremy was management’s first choice. The only reason he wasn’t promoted was because the boss thinks Jeremy already works too much and she didn’t want to give him more responsibility. Jade Wu gets hired and Jeremy immediately starts crushing on her.

Melissa overhears Jessica telling Maria about Liz finding Conner in bed with Tia. Tia can tell Melissa knows something and she really doesn’t want things to get out of hand. After cheerleading practice, Tia finds Conner waiting for her at her locker. He wants to go for a drive. Tia says she doesn’t think they should hang out until this mess gets straightened out. Conner says, “Call me when you grow up,” and stalks off. Because he’s, like, so mature.

Conner’s having trouble dealing with all this on top of his mother’s newfound sense of responsibility. She gives him a curfew and he sneers at her. The next day, he does a very un-Conner thing and writes a poem to Liz and sticks it in her locker. He can’t believe it when Liz doesn’t immediately come running back to him. He goes to House of Java that afternoon in a terrible mood and loses his temper completely when he sees Tia and Liz having what looks to be an intense conversation. Neither of them is speaking to him and he’s pissed that they’re talking to each other. He goes home and has some Scotch, all the while telling himself he’s not like his mother.

Liz’s talk with Tia is pretty useless. All Liz can think about is the fact that Tia kissed her boyfriend. Tia tries to reassure her that she and Conner have always been just friends and Conner would have said something by now if he liked her. Liz thinks Tia’s delivery is a little weird and asks her if she has romantic feelings for Conner. Tia says she might. Liz loses it and tells Tia she wants her to stay away from Conner. Tia gets all indignant, but Liz tells her that’s the way it is and then sashays out the door. When she gets home, she decides the best thing to do is tell Conner she loves him. What? She starts thinking about when and where and how she’ll tell him. Seriously? You just caught him in bed with some other chick and you want to tell him you love him? Does not compute.

Jeremy and Jade keep on flirting with each other at work and it’s really getting under Jessica’s skin. Jade is way bitchier than I ever thought her capable back when she was just a sad little Chinese-American who didn’t want anyone to know she was Chinese. She knows Jessica and Jeremy used to date, but she doesn’t seem to care. Whatever, I don’t care either.

Conner is hanging out in his garage, listening to the radio, totally wasted. Tia comes over to try to talk things out with him. She knocks on the side door, and Conner pulls her into the garage and starts making out with her. Tia thinks about stopping him but she doesn’t because he’s just so totally hot.

The Cover: I’d be interested in seeing the full version of this picture because it looks badly cropped. Whose ear is that down there?

Sweet Valley High Senior Year #16: Three Girls and a Guy

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

The Moral of the Story: If you work too much, your boyfriend is going to make out with some other chick.

Synopsis:

Andy is starting to get seriously annoying. He picks up Six for a date and gets totally flustered because she’s showing a little cleavage. And not just flustered, but scared. He still doesn’t know exactly how he feels about her so he’s basically afraid to be alone with her because then she might try to make out with him or something. In the car after dinner, Six starts unbuttoning her shirt and Andy just about has a heart attack. He goes to sleep that night wondering why he’s not attracted to Six. Andy, I’d like you to meet Tom McKay. I think you two might have a lot in common.

Conner is still being a whiny little bitch about Liz’s job. And I guess he kind of has a reason to be: his mom is coming home from rehab and he really wants Liz to be there for moral support the night before she gets there. Surprise, surprise, Liz has to work, so Conner walks over to Tia’s in the pouring rain. Tia gives him some of Angel’s old sweats to change into while Conner’s clothes dry, and they start talking about the fact that Conner’s afraid of what his mom is going to be like. They’re sitting very close together and looking very intense when Liz suddenly bursts in to surprise Conner. She gets a little weirded out when Tia and Conner nervously say they were just talking.

Ken’s father’s girlfriend, Asha, apologizes to Ken for her and Mr. Matthews missing the awards banquet on Friday night. She insists on making dinner for the Matthews men on Monday night. Maria comes over and gets along great with Asha, but then Ken’s dad calls and says he has to work late and won’t be able to make it. Asha looks really disappointed and Ken is pissed at his dad because it seems like he’s just avoiding his girlfriend. He’s a senior reporter and he should have been able to delegate the assignment that made him miss dinner.  A couple days later, Ken wakes up in the morning feeling really good about his father’s relationship, but when he goes down to breakfast, some woman who is not Asha is hanging out in Mr. Matthews’ bathrobe. Gross.

Andy goes on a couple more dates with Six, but it’s becoming increasingly obvious to him that he’s just not at all attracted to her. He does have a great time talking to Six’s brother, Travis, but doesn’t think anything of it until he notices himself checking Travis out and his heart actually skips a beat. He eventually comes to terms with the possibility that he might be gay, and he manages to break things off with Six without hurting her too much.

Tia comes to the mall the next day to see Liz on her break, and she gets really uncomfortable when Liz starts interrogating her about what she and Conner were talking about the night before. Liz is really upset that she’s not involved in every aspect of Conner’s life, and she’s a little jealous of the closeness Conner and Tia share. Meanwhile, Conner’s mother comes home and actually seems better. She cooks for the first time in years and makes Conner’s favorite dinner. Conner is feeling pretty good about this and calls Liz later to tell her all about it. Mrs. Wakefield says Liz is at work, so Conner sighs and calls Tia. They meet at House of Java, and Tia can’t believe how upbeat and happy Conner seems. She gives him a hug and is shocked when she feels a less than platonic emotion.

Maria decides to stick her nose in where it doesn’t belong and tell Conner that Liz is feeling insecure about him talking to Tia and not her about all his home stuff. Conner dwells on it all day and gets angrier and angrier that Liz has been talking to Maria about what’s going on with his mom. They’re supposed to go out that night, but Conner calls and says he’s sick because he doesn’t want to deal with her. He goes to Tia’s instead and they fall asleep watching a movie. They wake up facing each other in the morning and suddenly start kissing. They both think maybe they should stop, but it just feels too good. Inevitably, Liz barges in (doesn’t she ever knock?) and starts crying when she sees them. Then Mrs. Ramirez comes into the room and sees Conner and Tia in bed together. This is bad news, folks.

The Cover: This is the cheesiest picture. Does Liz’s hat say “LOL?” And I hate Conner’s stupid face. And Maria’s. I think this is the worst one yet.

Sweet Valley High Senior Year #13: All About Love

Monday, March 15th, 2010

The Moral of the Story: Will Simmons is a douche.

The Big Deal: Big Mesa party

Synopsis:

Liz is pretty much going to be grounded for the rest of her life for sneaking out and going to that party, and she goes to school the next day worried that she acted like an idiot in front of Conner. But surprisingly, Conner is nice. He asks her how she’s doing and then gives her a kiss before going off to class. So I guess they’re a couple now. FINALLY.

Will and Jessica are together, but Jessica really doesn’t like showing it at school. They have an argument at lunch because Will wants to hang out that night but Jessica promised Tia they’d go shopping. Don’t forget, Will’s kind of an ass. Melissa comes out to the courtyard, so Jessica gets up and leaves in a hurry. After school that day, Jessica works her first shift with Jeremy since the breakup. She feels pretty awkward. The phone rings and Jeremy answers it. Of course it’s Will, so Jeremy gets irritated. Jessica tells Will he probably shouldn’t come see her at work tonight.

At lunch the next day, Jessica asks Liz and Conner to double date with her and Will. Nobody actually knows they’re together at this point, so the whole table stares at them and Conner looks like he’s going to pass out. These fucking kids. Liz reminds Jessica that she’s grounded, but Jessica is sure she can talk their parents into letting Liz go. After lunch, Conner tells Liz he doesn’t like Will and isn’t interested in going, but he ends up saying he will if Liz’s parents say it’s okay. It turns out Will isn’t too happy about the idea either, but he tells Jessica it’s fine and if a double date with Liz and Conner is inevitable, they might as well “get it over with.” What a prince. Ned and Alice have a talk with Jessica, and then tell Liz they will unground her if she agrees to get a job, pull up her grades and spend more time on the Oracle. Since Liz has already decided to do all of that, she readily agrees and she and Jessica go upstairs to get ready for their double date.

The date is pretty horrible. Will talks about football all night and then gets annoyed when Jessica asks Conner about his guitar playing. Will doesn’t seem to notice that Jessica is still eating when he says he wants to leave and be alone with her somewhere. Jessica says it would be rude to leave Conner and Liz, but really she’s just sick of Will trying to decide everything about what they do. She tells him she’s not Melissa and she’s not just going to give in to everything he says. Will gets pissed and leaves. When he gets home, his mother tells him Melissa came by and dropped off a box full of stuff he gave her while they were together, including a sweater he gave her as a gift. Will’s a little bummed.

Jessica calls Will on Saturday morning to apologize for the night before and ask him to get together later. He kind of says, “Yeah, sure.” Jessica can tell he’s still upset about her bringing up Melissa, so she’s determined to make their date totally awesome. After talking to Jessica, Will goes to Melissa’s with the sweater. Melissa is outside sunbathing in a string bikini (you know she planned that shit). Will can’t stop staring at her, and he’s depressed when she thanks him for the sweater and then gets up and goes inside. So now, of course, Will can’t stop thinking about Melissa, just like he couldn’t stop thinking about Jessica when Melissa was his girlfriend. I hate this guy. Hate him, hate him, hate him.

So, Will takes Jessica to some Italian restaurant and starts talking about colleges. He says she should apply to a small school because she’ll be happier there, says he’ll sign her up for an SAT prep course (she’s already taken her SATs) and then he orders for her when the waitress comes. She gets upset and tells him to stop doing that, and he says, “Chill out, Melissa!” Smooth. Jessica tells him to take her home.

Conner’s friend, Evan, asks him to go to a Big Mesa party Saturday night. Conner thinks it could be the perfect thing to make him forget about Liz. Ugh, why does he want to forget about her now? I thought they were doing so well. Liz calls and Conner invites her to the party before he can stop himself. He worries he’s turning into a “boyfriend” guy. He’s really annoyed when he gets to Liz’s house and she says her parents want him to come in and say hello. But he deals with it and they go off to the party, taking Jessica with them because Liz didn’t want her sitting around at home all night.

Will wants to apologize to Jessica, but she’s not home. He finds out about the Big Mesa party and drives all the way out there. When he finds Jessica talking to Jeremy, he tries to get her to leave with him. Jessica says she doesn’t want to and this starts a whole thing with Jeremy and his friends. Will invites them all outside where I guess he’s going to beat them all up, but Jessica pleads with him not to fight them. He finally just leaves.

Conner and Liz go into a bedroom to make out for a minute. When they leave, another couple slips in. It’s some tall, good-looking black guy and Tia. Jessica and Jeremy dance together and she realizes how much she misses him and also how mad Will would be if he found out she was dancing with Jeremy. Meanwhile, Will goes to Melissa’s house. Well, that didn’t take long.

The Cover: At no point in this book do Will and Jessica look that happy.

This book apparently used to belong to some girl named Holly (her name is written in sparkly green ink on more than one page). Holly seems confused about someone named Alice. I wonder if White Rabbit was playing while she was reading this book.

Well, Holly, if you’re listening to the song this brings to my mind, the answer is “Jefferson Airplane.”

(As Sarah points out in the comments below, Holly is actually probably looking for Smokie – Living Next Door to Alice. Thanks, Sarah!)