"Sweet Valley Confidential" Review

"Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later"
by Francine Pascal

Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release Date: Mar 29, 2011

Source: sent by publicist

My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Summary from goodreads.com:

Now with this striking new adult novel from author and creator Francine Pascal, millions of devoted fans can finally return to the idyllic Sweet Valley, home of the phenomenally successful book series and franchise. Iconic and beloved identical twins Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield are back and all grown up, dealing with the complicated adult world of love, careers, betrayal, and sisterhood. 


My Review: 


I didn't think this book was as awful as the other reviews are making it out to be. However, the author makes really bold choices about her beloved characters, and some of the choices are bound to make long time fans angry. While the book isn't rocket science, it's the equivalent of a juicy soap opera. Lots of fluff, and all the drama you need for a relaxing afternoon read.


It's hard to say that the Wakefield twins have "grown up" but it is ten years later. Elizabeth and Jessica are still caught up in the same type of fluffy, selfish story lines we saw them in during high school. Now the residents of Sweet Valley are cheating on spouses instead of boyfriends and girlfriends. Jessica is still wildly selfish and Elizabeth is still a goody two shoes martyr. As the book itself says "Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose," which means "The more things change, the more they stay the same."


I always had a soft spot for Bruce Patman, and he comes out as the 'most changed for the better' from Sweet Valley High. Lila Fowler fans, she barely makes an appearance, much to my dismay. As for the other characters, I won't give any spoilers, but I can see how huge fans of the series who remember every detail from the books would be disappointed and saddened by the direction of some of the characters (cough...Todd...cough).  


I didn't care for the New York storyline at all. Elizabeth had moved to NYC, and all of the events and characters from that part of the story seemed so irrelevant to the soapy drama happening in Sweet Valley. Readers want to know about their old favorites not disposable new characters. 


Another part of the book that I didn't like was the style of font for the flashback scenes. It literally made my eyes hurt. I don't think it was a proper font for reading such long passages.



Main Characters: 2/5
Supporting Characters: 3/5 

Setting: 4/5
Romance: 2/5

Uniqueness: 3/5
Cover: 4/5
Writing: 3/5


 

Bottom Line: An angsty, drama-filled visit back to Sweet Valley. The author made bold choices for her beloved characters that may or may not please hard-core fans.

8 comments:

Christina / Book Addict said...

I am so bummed that Lila doesn't make a big appearance in this book. I think I will wait to read this. I was such a huge fan of SVH and I don't think I can handle some of these changes that Pascal made. Thanks for the honest review!

Missie said...

I haven't picked this one up yet even though I was a big fan growing up. I just have been motivated to. Now that I know about the font think I'm thinking maybe it might be better to get on my Kindle. It might be easier to read that way. Thanks for the heads up on that. :)

Blodeuedd said...

nah, not for me, those negative things I have head made me think that I would just be annoyed. And Elizabeth sure grew up to be a martyr, started to dislike her little by little

Leanna (Daisy Chain Book Reviews) said...

I'm reading this one now, and I think it's fun! I've seen a lot of reviews totally slagging this book off, but I think people are taking it all way too seriously. It's fun fluff and should just be read that way!

OMG - can you freakin' believe that Jess did that to Liz?!!! :D

Alexis @ Reflections of a Bookaholic said...

Thanks for the honest review. I really wonder why Pascal chose to do this with her characters. It just seems to be a strange move.

Misha said...

I guess I will be avoiding this . I was such a big fan of the series while growing up - I don't want to spoil the good memories :)

Kitty said...

Ooh I read a few of these when I was young but my sister was COMPLETELY OBSESSED and had every single book! Might have to buy her this, thanks for the review.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Oo ewww that doesn't sound good. Thanks for the honesty.

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