Tuesday, March 29, 2011

CBR III Review #48: Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later

Yes this book came out this morning. Yes I'm all ready done. I'm a huge dork I haven't been so excited about a book coming out in forever. In elementary school I was obsessed with The Babysitters Club, then in middle school I moved on to Fear Street and Sweet Valley High.  In high school I read Christoper Pike, Caroline Cooney, VC Andrews and I'll admit I read the Sweet Valley University series.  Embarrassingly I'll even admit I watched the Sweet Valley High TV series and seeing Brittany Daniel's aka Jessica Wakefield as a transvestite on It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia still screws with my head.  I would like to mention that SVH and Regina Morrow is the main reason to this day I've never dreamed of touching cocaine.  I mean she died  after trying it only one time!

This book is impossible to review.  The writing is still horrific and there are several continuity errors, but it's a wonderful dose of nostalgia.  The twins, who are now 27, drop the f bomb, they have sex, they have real world jobs and not everything is as rosy as it was when they were 16 years old.

The characters in the novel may have grown up but it's still a SVH book complete with happy ending.  Would I recommend this book to someone who didn't grow upon SVH, of course not! But if you read the novel growing up and want to revisit some old characters it's a great way to spend a few hours.

I'm going to go ahead and warn you that the rest of this review is insanely spolierfic.  Because honestly everyone who grew up on SVH knows this is not the next great American novel. You are only reading this review because you want to know what happens!  If you don't want to know who is gay, who is married, who broke whose heart then turn away now!

Elizabeth is now in New York City.  She works for an off Broadway publication and lives in a cheap New York city apartment.  She ran away to New York when her engagement with Todd Wilkins was broken off.  Why was it broken off?  Because Todd slept with Jessica!  He slept with her for a full month during their senior year of SVH and then again 5 years later after Jessica's second marriage falls apart.

It's been 8 months since Elizabeth found out about the betrayal and now Todd and Jessica are planning on getting married (Jessica's third if you ever read the series and probably her millionth engagement). Jessica lives in Sweet Valley with Todd Wilkins and is the constant source of gossip due to her huge betrayal.  Jessica works in public relations and marketing for a large cosmetics company - apparently she is a genius at her job, of course these twins would never be ordinary at anything!

Winston Egbert made millions in a internet venture with Bruce Patman.  Winston apparently has turned into a huge arrogant ass and right before Elizabeth learns about the affair he dies from falling off his balcony. Apparently he was super intoxicated.  That is the second SVH death due to alcohol in the series for those who are keep track.  Remember the Jungle Prom and the spiked punch? I wonder why the dangers of alcohol never stuck but the thought of cocaine still terrifies me to this day.

I blame the fact that Winston turned into a huge prick on the fact that when Jessica and Todd first start sleeping together Winston found out and Todd dumped him as a friends because he felt so guilty being around someone who knew his terrible secret. Maybe if Todd had been able to keep it in his pants his friendship with Winston would have never ended and Winston would have never had gotten drunk and fallen off his balcony.  Cheating kills!

Lila Fowler is now married to Ken Matthews, who is a huge NFL star.  Apparently she never did learn how to be faithful to someone and routinely cheats on her husband. Carolina Pearce is still a major gossip but is now a cancer survivor and successful real estate agent.  Enid Rollins has turned into an insufferable uptight right wing republican who also has a thriving medical practice.

Bruce Patman is now Elizabeth's best friend.  After his parents died in a car wreck his senior year of college he became a changed person and was no longer the shallow selfish guy that he was in high school and now he harbors a unrequited love for Miss Elizabeth Wakefield.  Does anyone else remember that he tried to date rape Elizabeth back in high school?  Apparently that was easily forgotten.

Steven Wakefield married Cara Walker but it was rumored for months that he was cheating on her with Lila Fowler.  Jessica accidentally found out that wasn't the case and he was in fact having an affair with Aaron Dallas. If I was going to pick a character to be gay in SVH I would have picked Bruce Patman, that man had some major underlying sexual insecurities in high school.

Okay that's the run down of some of the characters you grew up with such a long time ago! If anyone else picks it up let me know what you think!  I'm also sorry if I ruined the novel for anyone but I told you to stop reading, buttheads.

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