Saturday, November 13, 2010
Sweet Valley Twins #35: Amy’s Pen Pal
It’s funny how some of these books tend to stick with you. I probably read this book 17 years ago (good lord, am I dating myself?) and as soon as I started reading it, the whole storyline started running through my head.
Sweet Valley has a big three day weekend and everyone is off from school and work on Monday. It’s a big weekend too because Dave Carlquist is doing a live radio show at the mall on Sunday night. He’s a high school senior who ran a radio show and it was so popular that the local station picked it up. I call bull shit on that. Plus Alice is throwing a huge barbecue on Sunday and Lila is having a party on Saturday.
Jessica and Elizabeth are shopping for napkins and stuff at the mall. Alice is so busy with planning that she doesn’t have time to get that kind of stuff. Jess gets all distracted by a purple sweater and wants is so bad because she’s in the Unicorn Club and they all love purple. They swing by the mall center, to see them fixing up the stage for the radio show.
Liz really wants to get the stuff and get going, but Jess doesn’t want to walk all the way across the mall, so she suggests they stop for ice cream. They run into Lila and the rest of the club, which wants to talk about her party. Lila makes a face when asking if Amy is coming, but of course no one would miss one of her events.
Liz ends up buying everything herself and then going home, where she finds Amy eating a sandwich and staring at a mountain of potatoes. Amy explains that Alice went out to get more potatoes and she’s there because her own mom blew her off for the day. She asks Liz to help her clean up her room and they take a bike ride before taking care of the cleaning.
Not long after Liz leaves, Amy hears the doorbell. It’s Samantha Williams, her pen pal. Sam explains that she sent a letter, saying she was coming, but Amy never got it. When the Suttons show up, they agree to let her stay, even though they’re a little confused. Sam says her parents are going camping for the weekend and she never told them she didn’t get a response back, because she assumed it was okay for her to stay.
Amy is so excited that she introduces Sam to the twins the next day. Jess could care less, but Liz lets Sam borrow an outfit for the big party. Sam is a little worried about going to a party she wasn’t invited too, but they assure her that it’s fine. I’m guessing Lila invites so many people that she wouldn’t know who’s there anyway. Jess meets a friend of Steven’s Buddy, who’s in the radio club with him and she kind of blows him off.
Sam meets Lila at the party, who acts kind of snotty, until Sam starts gushing over her house. Before long, Sam’s completely involved with the members of the Unicorn Club and ignoring Amy. Amy notices Sam telling stories that she’s never heard before, like how she’s dating actress Glinda Paris’s son, won a bunch of blue ribbons for horseback riding and has a house in Hawaii. Amy leaves the party early, but Sam stays all night.
The next day Lila calls and asks Sam to join the girls for lunch. Amy doesn’t want to go, but does it anyway because her mom wants them to stay together. Sam wows the girls with all her stories and they make Amy feel like crap. After lunch Lila suggests making Sam an honorary member of the club and only Jessica protests. She thinks Sam is full of it. She also goes to see the radio club and sees Buddy again, who kind of seems to like her.
The barbeque is a smash, but the girls are starting to doubt Sam. Jessica remembers reading that the actress’s son is a lot younger than them and manages to track down a copy. She shows it to the club and they decide to test Sam. They make up a story about an actress making a new movie and hurting herself on the set. Sam lies and says she took her flowers in the hospital and met her.
They decide to make her look like a fool. They tell her that Dave Carlquist wants her on his show and she’s supposed to go up to the stage and talk to him during the second song. She’ll look like a moron when he turns her away. Liz tells Amy about their plan and she’s all into it because she’s tired of Sam treating her like crap.
Amy’s mom pops up and asks for Amy’s address book because she wants to call Sam’s parents. Sam keeps acting all weird about when she’s going home and not talking about her plans. It turns out that Sam ran away from home and her parents are flying down to get her. Liz runs to Steven, hoping he can do something about the club’s mean trick because she doesn’t want Sam to get hurt and he agrees to help.
The club all shows up and tells Sam that everything’s fine. The girls are looking around for Dave and Tamara points out Buddy. Jessica is floored because she was around him constantly and never realized who he was. He makes a big announcement and calls Sam on stage, where he interviews her. The club is all pissed, they tell her they know she’s a liar and she’ll never be a member of the club.
Sam gets back and her parents are waiting for her. It turns out that she has a little sister Emily who’s been sick and in the hospital a lot. She ran away because she didn’t think her parents cared about her. They promise that things will change. She makes up with Amy and promises to invite her to San Francisco for a visit.
Everyone’s all excited about the radio show because the station is hosting a contest to give it a new name. The winner gets a huge party at a local club and both twins enter. Jessica comes up with Teen Talk, Teen Scene and a dozen others. Liz ends up winning with The Awesome Hour and agrees to share the prize with Jess. I like Jessica’s names a lot better.
*Amy totally has the hots for Ken Matthews and I forgot this story completely. Did they make any reference to it when they were older and she went after him?
*I’m starting to wonder why none of these kids were mentioned later, especially since they were such a big deal in this series. Would it have been so hard to make Janet or Ellen turn up in a Sweet Valley High book?
*Liz only invites two people to the barbecue: Amy and Julie Porter. Yet in SVH it’s never mentioned that they were friends and Liz only kind of knows her.
*Ned makes a comment about how it’s been forever since he had Alice’s pie for breakfast. I almost died.
*Would anyone really care about a teen radio show, even back then? Even better, why would a teen show get so much attention from a real station? They kind of make it out like Dave was doing a Happy Harry Hard-On show in his basement, but not nearly as cool.