The one where you think Jessica has sex but the title and cover are misleading, or #5 All Night Long

I was totally not allowed to read this one. For the apparent sexual content it promised. BUT….when I did read it, it did not deliver. Jessica was out all night because she wouldn’t sleep with a college guy on the first date and she couldn’t get a ride home until the morning. LAME!

I digress. First, let’s start with the cover. Why did Jessica and her date stop at the Sears portrait studio? Why in the hell does Scott have a porn moustache? He looks old enough to be my father. Or a little bit like a drag king. Creepy. And Jessica and her damn feathered hair.

Jessica hangs out with aformentioned moustached college guy, Scott, at a beach party. They are drinking! SHOCKER! And they are passing around a joint. This is how Jessica knows she is in the “fast lane”. Jessica has no real contact, just talks in sexual innuendos and acts like a third grader, like dumping mud on him and runs away. Hot. I’ll have to try that one. They go to some abandoned boathouse or something and Scott starts kissing her “like he means business”. She protests and he pins her down and threatens that he won’t let her leave until she “gives it up”.

Hold it there. Here is the chance for the issue of date violence and date rape to be addressed, but good old Francine decides to go with the blame the victim route. Scott says, ” Go ahead, Jessie baby. Tell them. Tell them how you lied to [your parents] so you could sneak up here with me. Tell them how you just happened to be in a deserted boathouse, practically naked, when I came along and tried to take advantage of you.” Great. Fantastic. He leaves her in the boathouse to find her way back.

The All Night Long refers to the time it takes Jessica to find her way back and get a ride home. When she gets back she bullies into covering for her. Elizabeth is a total doormat, so does it and has multiple panic attacks in the process. Oh, and fights with Todd. Big shocker. Jess actually makes Liz feel bad for not helping her enough. She even has to pretend to be Jessica in front of her Mom so that she can cover. How does her Mom not know? Jessica basically blames her whole situation on Elizabeth, justifying her dumb actions as Elizabeth not stopping her. Whoa. Some serious denial. And totally yells at Elizabeth that she hates her once she gets back, and Liz just takes it and begs for forgiveness. Based on the novel that is about an inch think, I’ve diagnosed Jessica with Histrionic Personality Disorder:

    • Constant seeking of reassurance or approval.
    • Excessive dramatics with exaggerated displays of emotions.
    • Excessive sensitivity to criticism or disapproval.
    • Inappropriately seductive appearance or behavior.
    • Excessive concern with physical appearance.
    • A need to be the center of attention (self-centeredness).
    • Low tolerance for frustration or delayed gratification.
    • Rapidly shifting emotional states that may appear shallow to others.
    • Opinions are easily influenced by other people, but difficult to back up with details.
    • Tendency to believe that relationships are more intimate than they actually are.
    • Make rash decisions
    • Threaten or attempt suicide to get attention

Yep, seems about right.

Other things:

When describing Olivia Davidson, the arts editor for The Oracle, it mentions that she is “big on anti-nuke rallies and eats alafalfa srprouts and whole-grain breads”. Oh come on, Francine, we know what you really want to say- that she’s a dyke. Just say it.

Enid also recouts a college party she heard about from her cousin. “It was kind of a grown up pajama party, with everyone wearing nightshirts and nightgowns, and on the floor strewn with mattresses for them to sit on instead of chairs. According to Enid’s cousin, things had gotten pretty out of hand, especially with all the drinking that had been going on.” The fuck???

These characters either have no sense of humor, or they were purposely written with the sense of humor geared towards four year olds. When Todd and Liz are fighting over the fact that Liz is being manipulated by Jessica, she calls off their Saturday night date. “I’d rather go out with Jaws!” is her retort. Okay, maybe the reference meant more in 1982. That would mean today, that insult would translate to “I’d rather go out with Shrek!” Okay, it still doesn’t work.

I think Bruce Patman is a thinly veiled allegory for free market capitalism and corporate greed. And Liz represents socialism. It’s like Animal Farm with teenagers.

The moral: if you manipulate and emotionally abuse your sibling long enough, you will finally break them down. Or something.

My grade: B

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20 thoughts on “The one where you think Jessica has sex but the title and cover are misleading, or #5 All Night Long

  1. Onnie says:

    hahaha i remember blushing when i took this book out of the library! then i read it and felt so cheated!!! damn Kate Williams, or whoever the ghost writer was at the time.

  2. kiwimusume says:

    OMG, I love this journal so much!!! I love seeing the cheesy books I used to love getting snarked on. 😄

    Gotta disagree on the “blame the victim” bit, though. Maybe it was because I read this book after reading numerous Dolly and Girlfriend articles about the dangers of shaking your tits in horny college guys’ faces, but I always thought Jessica was a gigantic idiot for going off with him. I mean, really, what did she THINK was going to happen?

    I totally agree that date rape is wrong, but I also think that if you’re too naive to know about basic safety precautions, you’re too naive to go to that kind of party.

  3. Juliet says:

    this book was almost as big a letdown as the Sweet Valley U books down the road in which the twins actually did have sex.

  4. olivia says:

    Or the allegory could be to Ayn Rand books. Think about. All the criticism of the poor, the obsession with wealth and material goods (anyone else remember how Rand used to go into great detail about the houses and apartments of her characters, similar to Pascal’s ghostwriters’ obsession with “Fowler Crest.”) Bruce could be Hank Rearden! Or something.

    Also, I remember my friends in elementary school all asking to borrow this book because it looked so racy. And since I was nine, I don’t think I understood date rape at all. I just thought that the whole “Jessie baby” thing was creepy.

    • Lucas says:

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  5. Dwanollah says:

    One word: pornstache.

    I know Tom Selleck was all dreamy in 1982, but dudes, this cover is so gross. Even back then, I wondered if the college guy secretly loved the Villiage People and leather chaps.

    The other moral of this book is that lying and cheating is wrong… unless you are Elizabeth doing it to protect your twin sister.

  6. Tia Ramirez says:

    How come Alice & Ned are mentioned as being young and good-looking. in 1 book they also mentioned alice as havin no grey hair.
    if they have a 20 yr old and 2 16 yr olds…they should be OLD by now! unless she was freaking pregnant at 18! which v know she was not.

  7. dejarmahs says:

    just found this gem at a goodwill. absolutely astounded at how little sense it made. it doesn’t even really explain how jessica found her way home from a party full of dumb drunk kids and guys who try to rape her? also, dog-eared the hell out of it for quotes:

    “this whole things was elizabeth’s fault, she [jessica] decided suddenly. if only elizabeth had tried a little harder to talk her out of this, she was sure she wouldn’t be here.”

    yup. i don’t know what type of disorder she has, but she’s definitely some type of insane.

    also, liz’s writing. ahem: “i rose from the warmth of my dreams to the chill dawn of reality.”

    because sweet valley is a harsh, cold place you hate so much?? aargh.

    and also, mom wakefield wears burgundy velour warm ups. i don’t think her ghettofab and spanish styled house mix very well.

  8. katie says:

    I know the victims aren’t to blame….but it just really frustrates me when girls dresses like skanks, hoping to get the guys attention and then gets pissed off when guys make a move on them. Wearing clothes that shows a lot of skin…and short skirts; hoping that boys would think your sexy is almost pretty much as if your asking for it. Quit complaining. And then girls complain that guys are shallow and only want sex…etc.

    The dude really does look like Freddie Mercury.
    Ick…dno why..but guys with moustache grosses me out…but thats just me.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Um, what’s with all the justifications for date rape in the comments here? Sure, Jessica ain’t the brightest crayon in the box in this book (when is she ever, though?) but that doesn’t in any way, shape, or form excuse Scott’s douchbaggery. Seriously. The only one responsible for rape is the rapist. No matter WHAT the rape survivor is wearing.

    Thanks for another great recap, ihatewheat!

  10. Leila says:

    hmmmm..what above comment from me is right. although i understand what some others meant. they prob dnt mean to say its the victims fault. they are probably frustrated by jess’s cockteasing ways, as well as being a sociopath and bitch. i certainly have seen a typical jessicas behaviour in some girls and thought ‘oh dear…’
    certainly it is scotts and his out of control hormones and dominating characteristics…but i can see why they also see it in a different perspectives as well. bear in mind, not everyone sees a situation the same way. for instance, some people praise angelina for her humanitarian deeds while others call her an attention seeking whore.
    blaming the victim is wrong, although jessica should of been careful. this type of situation is extremely common even though many cases of rape and sexual assault cases are not often reported to the police due to various factors. young teenagers and adults needs to be EXTREMELY careful, and never to neglect help from trusted peers.

    yeah. i really disliked this book. not my cup of tea. maybe because the author portrayed jess particularly in a VERY negative light. it made me feel sry for liz *gasp*

  11. katie (asian one) says:

    OHH! I have this book…but I dont remember much about it.
    I remembered Jess getting pissed at liz for not helping her….like..seriously..wtf?

    Yeah, I remembered feeling embarrassed purchasing this book from the book exchanged store. Its like he’s removing her clothes for some action. The lady glanced at the book and back at me a couple of times, probably thinking I should be reading BSC blah blah. Anyhu..I was disappointed as well that the title was misleading. I mean, is that all? Not that I was interested in sex and stuff at that age. lol.

    Ive always wanted Jess’s top! Scotts moustache is a turn off. Is he suppose to be 19 or 20? He looks 30 or 40.

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  13. Keyler says:

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