Wednesday, November 11, 2009
FEAR STREET: THE CHEATER (R.L. STINE)
Carter Phillips is one of those secondary characters who pops up in Fear Street books. In those she’s rich, blonde and slightly snobby. In The Cheater she gets her own story where she’s rich, blonde and slightly snobby.
Carter is moaning to her boyfriend Dan about how horrible her life is. Yeah, I really feel for you girl. She took some special math test and scored 500 something, but that’s not good enough for her dad. Judge Phillips wants his little girl to go to Princeton and insists she retake the test and score at least 700. Dan acts all uncomfortable because he’s a math genius who scored 715 on his test.
The head to The Corner, the local after school hang out and she “jokingly” suggests that Dan take the test for her. He gets all freaked out and she changes the subject fast. After he leaves, Adam Messner, a math genius from their school who works at the restaurant, approaches her and offers to take the test. All he wants in return is one date and she gets all excited, barely noticing a newspaper story all about her dad and some mobster.
She fakes going to the test, gets the call from Adam and he freaks her out by saying that they checked for ID and he got busted. Haha, turns out it was a big joke and everything is fine so they make plans for their date. I don’t know about you, but even when I read this book back when it came out, I knew that you needed picture ID for one of these tests…
Adam is kind of cool because he doesn’t take Carter’s shit, calling her a “North Hills princess” and asking her to dress down on their date. They go to some underground dance club where she knows no one will spot them and then he kisses her. His girlfriend Sheila jumps Carter outside her house, turning all “he’s mine, stay away bitch” on her.
Carter retreats to her fancy world with Dan and Jill Bancroft (who I’m sure is in other books!). She heads to the country club to meet Jill and is shocked to see Adam outside, fighting with security. She reluctantly lets him inside and lies to Jill about how she ran into him. They decide to play doubles against some Richard guy, who apparently wants to get in Carter’s pants bad. She and Adam kick his ass and they all have a good laugh, except Richard who runs off like a three year old.
In the locker room, she grabs her bag and finds a cow heart inside with a note telling her not to break daddy’s heart. She’s freaked out, but not so bad that she can’t go right back to making out with Dan. Of course they get the test results and “she” scored a 730 so daddy runs right off and buys her a pair of $3,000 diamond earrings. And in case you’re wondering about Mrs. Phillips, she’s all busy with planning some big charity event for the club.
Adam blackmails her into a second date, only he wants to set Jill up with his friend Ray. They meet at some club and Stine apparently has no clue about the opposite sex or what girls want because he tries to make Ray all disgusting, but he actually sounds kind of hot. Dusty black jeans, a black shirt, silver studs in one ear, a skull earring and a couple of tats. Mm…bet he has a motorcycle too.
So everyone is having a good time until Ray puts the moves on Jill. Then he passes her off to another guy and somehow the two girls end up in a circle of guys. Is this a gang bang in a Fear Street book? Adam and Ray lead the taunters (damn, no sex) until a fight breaks out and the girls run off. Carter tells Jill that she bet Adam he couldn’t beat Richard in sex and the date was their dare.
Dan finally grows a pair and confronts Carter, telling her that he knows she went out with Adam. She denies it and tries to make him feel better. Then they play this asinine game called “what would you pick?” where they point out a display and pick what they want. He points to a jewelry display and picks a random locket.
Adam turns up and tells Carter that he wants $1,000 in return for his silence. At this point I’m wondering why the heck she doesn’t call his bluff. If they didn’t ask for ID at the test center, how would they know who really took the test. Instead she pawns her precious earrings, gives him the money and tells her dad that they’re getting repaired.
A car tries to run her off the road and she gets home, she sees Adam outside. He says it wasn’t him, but does demand more money. She sells a bunch of her jewelry, but only makes $200. Dan then confronts her and figures out what happened, which leads to a breakdown. She goes to Adam’s house and then comes home to find Dan, just as the cops arrive to inform her that Adam was shot and someone saw her car out front. Luckily Dan acts as her alibi, but then stays the hell away from her.
Her parents head out for the night and she starts hearing noises, even seeing shadows and the phone is disconnected. A guy jumps her, the cops show up and *gasp* it’s some total stranger. Papa Phillips shows up just in time to recognize the guy as someone who works for the big mobster. He was trying to get to the judge through his daughter!
All’s well in rich-ville until Sheila calls and demands $500. Turns out that Adam told her what happened and she claims to have proof that Carter killed him. Frankly I’d call it a day and tell her to fuck off, but she sells her expensive stereo. She gets the evidence and calls Dan to tell him that she’s ready to confess to her dad, but wants him there for support.
Carter and Dan sit down with her dad and she tells him about the cheating, then confesses to killing Adam. The judge gets all stern and starts to call the police, even though Dan tells him that he needs to help his daughter. Ooh, hard ass. When he refuses, Dan confesses that he killed Adam and Carter tells her dad that she knew he’d do the right thing.
She confesses that she figured out the truth when she got the “proof” from Shelia: the gold locket she pointed out to Dan earlier in the book. Dan says it was an accident and the gun went off when he was fighting with him. Judge Phillips offers to help and apologizes to Carter for putting so much pressure on her. At the end of the book Carter and Dan sit down to a game of chess, claiming that she’s done with cheating. Aw…
Things I Learned:
Money can buy everything. Seriously, Dan kills a guy and he doesn’t even get a slap on the wrist! Two pages later they’re playing a game and joking around. Also Carter’s dad isn’t even upset that she pawned all her shit and lied to everyone. Ugh, apparently Carter is the Fear Street equivalent of Jessica Wakefield.
On another note, Jill was dating Gary Brandt in this book. I think that guy turns up in every single book! I need to start paying better attention…