Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Unicorn Club #20: In Love with Mandy


I’m not sure how I feel about the Unicorn Club books because this was way past my time. I flipped through a few of the earlier books, so I could figure out where this fell in the Sweet Valley line. The books cover the 7th grade year of our favorite girls, but the twins are barely in the books! Liz is in the earlier books, but by this book, only Jess is still a member and she’s only in a few scenes.

Lila Fowler is up to her credit card limit, but still wants to get some new clothes. When she stops by to see her dad, she runs into Mitchell Parsons, who’s waiting for his dad to finish up a meeting. They do a little flirting, until their dads come out fighting. Mr. Fowler reveals that he’s in the process of buying Mitchell’s dad’s company and things aren’t going well.

Mandy Miller, another member of the club, just got a job working in the kitchen of the country club. I have to point out that this is completely illegal for a 13-14 year old girl. Her first night working is also the night of a huge adult/kid costume dance.

Lila shows up in a unicorn mask she custom ordered and a purple outfit. She runs into Mitchell, who wants her to sneak out to the golf course with him. Knowing that her dad won’t approve, she gets Mandy to wear her costume and wander around the room. Her and Mitch have fun, but end up fighting over their dads and she storms off.

While wearing the costume, Mandy meets a guy dressed as Prince Valiant. They do a lot of flirting and get along really well, but then Lila turns up and she has to give back the costume. He sees Lila wearing the outfit and she realizes that it’s Brandon Jones, a super cute and super rich guy who goes to Lovett Academy.

Brandon spills punch on himself and Mandy tries to help him. She keeps stumbling over her words because she thinks he’s so cute. She tries mopping up the punch with bread because she’s so crazy over him. He goes right back to Lila, thinking that she’s the one he’s been with all night and makes plans to see her later.

Lila immediately decides that they’ll make the perfect couple because they’re both cute and rich. He tells her that he wants her to help him create a committee to raise money for kids with cancer, which is his pet project because he survived cancer. She gets a little freaked out because Mandy fought cancer too and she’s worried they have more in common. She ends up lying and telling Mandy that he thought she was Lila and sought her out for help with the project.

Brandon and Lila both get a bunch of friends from their schools to help with the project, including Mitchell. Mandy actually does all the work, but won’t take any of the credit. She makes all of the decorations, makes the invitations and addresses all the invites. Brandon thinks Lila is the one doing everything, but at the same time, he keeps thinking that he knows Mandy from somewhere.

Jessica and Mandy go shopping for new outfits for the dance. Apparently Mandy is a girl after my own heart because she usually shops at thrift stores. She finds this “great” black smock with an artist’s palette on it and she buys it, even though it costs a ton. Jessica points out that she’s spending a lot of time with Mitch and that he likes her, but she blows it off.

Lila and Brandon really have nothing in common, except they look good. The party is getting a lot of publicity and people keep asking about their relationship and they can’t even come up with any answers, but they still assume that they’re a couple. Lila slacks off one day, leaving him to work on the decorations.

Mandy shows up and helps out a little. Mitch shows up and they ask her to go out for dessert, but she can’t because of work. Brandon keeps suggesting other days to get together and she can’t because of her job. She runs off, then feels bad and goes back to explain. She ends up shouting at them, telling them that she has a job before running off in tears.

Later she learns that she has to work on the night of the party. Mitch sends her flowers and asks her to the party, but she has to tell him no. Brandon calls Lila to tell her that Mitch is coming by to pick up some papers for the party and she explodes on her dad, telling him not to say a word about his dad and basically being a bitch.

Mitch hears the argument and tells her that he respects her for standing up to her dad. Mr. Fowler then reveals that he and his dad had been friends since elementary school and were even college roommates. He owns 700 businesses and they fight every time he buys one from him.

Lila and Brandon once again have an awkward moment before the dance. He keeps thinking about Mandy and assumes that she thinks he’s a rich snob and so does everyone else. At the party, Lila confesses that he met Mandy and that she was the one behind most of the planning. He ends up running off to find her, but she makes up with Mitch.

Brandon goes to the country club and bonds with Mandy. He knows that she was the one from the first dance and that they share a cancer survival. He ends up sticking around all night and helping her do all her work. They get to leave early and make it back to the party, so he can give a big speech. He kisses her in front of everyone and she thinks about how dreams do come true.

*The Unicorn Club has a “unicorn to unicorn” motto and if one girl asks another to do something unicorn to unicorn, the other has to do it. That’s how Lila gets Mandy to blow off her job.

*Jessica goes gaga when she learns that guys from Lovett are helping. Remember in the later books when she wants to transfer there?

*In this one, Lila says that her dad wants her to go to Lovett, but she decided to stay at Sweet Valley. In the SVH books, it’s explained that he made her stay there because he wanted her to have a “normal life”.

*Lila explains that she doesn’t have to do any work because she’s co-chair of the fundraising committee, but expects everyone else to do the work.

*The local ticket sales/company gives the group a complete list of kids aged 12-14 in the area that buy concert tickets. That’s illegal and impossible.

*They send out invitations to certain people and only those people are allowed to buy tickets to the party. This seems like a bad fundraising idea to me.

*That cover dress doesn't match the books. Lila wears a purple dress, not a pink one and Mandy's face is covered by her mask.

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