The one where they think they’re in a baby sitters’ club book, or Super Edition: Malibu Summer

I don’t know what makes this a super edition. Maybe because it’s about 20 pages longer than the usual book? In case we forgot that Elizabeth is the Madonna and Jessica is the whore, Liz gets to wear a hideously conservative suit and Jess gets the bikini.

So, it’s summer vacation and I am pretty sure the next book after this they are back in their junior year. Whatevs. That won’t keep me up at night. Jessica wants to work in Malibu as mother’s helpers, so she convinces (i.e. manipluates) Liz into giving up her job at the Sweet Valley news to do it with her. She even makes Liz interview for her as well. That’s ethical. Jessica takes a job at a small house with a baby because the family are cousins of Tony Sargent, a famous singer. This is someone that was just mentioned here, and I am pretty sure will never be mentioned again after this book. Liz gets a job in a large rich house for a girl that is unloved and neglected. Weird, because I just caught Uptown Girls yesterday. Of course, Liz, at sixteen, teaches them how to raise their child and how to treat each other. Blech.

This one was so bad and tedious I can barely tell you the rest. If I wanted a book about mother’s helpers, I would read Sunet Island. For reals. So….Tony Sargent, the singer, needs to hide out because apparently he banged a groupie and now her boyfriend wants to kill him. So he hides out at his cousin’s house and poses as a Yale senior. Elizabeth meets him when she is over covering for Jessica and they fall in love. Because he likes books. But he is 21! and too old! Her parents won’t approve, so she is struggling. Yelllooooo, you’re in Malibu without them, stop being such a LOOOOOOSSSSER, Liz. Seriously, this is so unrealistic. I think they are trying to create a good role model character, but Jesus H Christ I want to fucking punch Elizabeth. Ok, so there is some sort of big rainstorm and the little neglected girl runs away and Liz runs away with the singer. Jessica saves the little girl from being swept away by the storm and the stalker finds Elizabeth and the guy and attempts to kill him. Ho-hum.

All is well, but Elizabeth is mad when she finds her lovah is really Tony Sargent undercover. She is mad? Pleez. Also, they can never really have a relationship because he is such a big celeb. So she has to give him up. um, WHAT? This put me over the edge. Yea, it couldn’t work, but if you had the chance to DATE a celeb, you TAKE IT! I am nearing thirty and if I made out with a celeb, even B-List, I’d do it! Liz is such a fucking grandma!!!!!!! I am acting as if I am surprised that SVH is unrealistic.

Other thoughts:

Elizabeth talks shit about Lila yet hangs out with her all summer. Just sayin’.

Because Jessica and Lila are sooooooo pretty, they pick up guys wherever they go. Lila picks up a guy at the mall (so unlike her). Turns out he is a younger guy and he hides that fact from her (geeeee, we’ve never seen THAT plot device before.

My grade: C-

The one with the socioeconomic issues, or #9 Racing Hearts

When I read these the first time around, Lila Fowler was my favorite. Probably because she was rich, pretty, and popualar (supposedly). Criminy, her house actually had a name- Fowler Crest. I totally got a Sarah Michelle Gellar circa Cruel Intentions as my picture of her. I would say I still do like Lila. She is a total beast. but at least she is honest and not manipulative and borderline like Jessica. Plus, she’s got MAJOR daddy issues, so cut her a break.

Roger Barrett is sooooo poooor. Bruce Patman is soooooooo rich. In case you didnt already know, Francine, has to mention it about a thousand times. And she only thinks in extreme binaries. Roger is totes channeling Edward Norton. And ick! He has to wear a sweatshirt. Cuz he’s so poooor!

Ok, so there is this big annual race happening at SVH. It has never been mentioned before this book, so I am pretty certain it will never be mentioned again. The winner get some cash plus a scholarship to Sweet Valley College. Uh, okay. A track scholarship? They don’t mention it. Also, there is a big dance that follows the race. Because Sweet Valley can’t go five fucking minutes without having a dance. Lila suddenly shows interest in Roger once he becomes a strong contender for the title, because she “wants to be seen at the dance with the winner”. See, she’s a cold-hearted beast, but at least she’s straightfforward. But uh oh! Roger actually can’t make the race because on Saturday afternoons he is at his job as a janitor in an office building. BECAUSE HE’S POOR! God forbid a teenager has an afterschool job in Sweet Valley. And he couldn’t work at the mall?

Oh wait, Jessica decides she is totally mature and wants to go work at her father’s law office. Seemingly because she wants to learn more about it. But she delivers this gem, probably influences tons of preteen girls to apply to law school.:

It was one thing to defend lost causes but quite another to have to defend really grizzly, dangerous criminals. Civil law, something more along with the lines of her father’s practice , was much more better, she concluded. Conferring with other lawyers-including lots of handsome men- certainly had to be exciting , and a lot less dangerous

But about eight books ago, she was okay with giving it up to the town criminal when he picked her up on the walk home from school. Anyhoo, about five minutes into the job, she got annoyed that she actually has to make copies. What is this, Heidi from The Hills? But, she sneaks out and meets another guy working at the law office across the way. Because she is soooooo pretty and soooooooo popular (as we are constantly reminded) he asks her out. Except that he never wants to go out. They meet in the copy room after everyone goes home. Well, what is the purpose of this subplot? Well, I love when Jessica gets embarassed. Turns out the guy doesn’t take Jessica out of the building because he can;t drive because he’s really fifteen. Oh! The horror! Jessica’s a shallow cunt so breaks it off. But during her late night rendezvous, she sees Roger working as a janitor in the building.

Ok, so of course Liz always has to be so condescendingly moral, she asks her father to ask Roger’s boss to give him the time off work so he can run the race. Oh, because his boss is making him work on Saturdays because he’s just a mean bitter guy. Not because he actually needs to get the office clean because the big shot lawyers like Ted Wakefield will complain. No, he’s just mean. I can’t wait til the class riots overtake Sweet Valley and loot the Dairi Burger.

Yes, Roger wins big shock and realized Lila is not the girl he wants, so he gets together with his friend Olivia. You know, the weird girl who eats alfalfa srouts and wears peasant skirts.

Snore.

Oh wait, Lila may be mentally retarded. Check out the poem she wrote for Roger:

Roger Barrett, a boy so fine

His speeding runner is so divine

In school, too, he is very smart.

He’ll walk away with the trophy from the Bart

In everything he operates in the highest stratum.

We at Sweet Valley are so proud we have him.

Wow Lila, great use of active voice.

My grade: D +