Saturday, August 28, 2010

Nightmare Hall: Book of Horrors (Diane Hoh)

Reed is the president of the Victoria McCoy fan club on the Salem University campus. McCoy is the writer in residence and a hugely successful writer of horror novels, many of which were turned into movies. At least they tell us this, but I have my doubts since the club only has a few other members: Debrah, Jude and Lilith.

Her boyfriend Link keeps coming to meetings, primarily to keep an eye on her and barely reads anything. He tells her that McCoy needs a new assistant since hers went missing and Reed decides to go for it. She stops by the writer’s house and after one meeting, gets the job, which makes all her friends jealous.

Jude demands that she pass along some of his writings because he assumes that he’ll be the next huge horror author. Debrah gets pissed, but rarely says anything. And Lilith is insanely pissed, but views it as her chance to put the moves on Link.

Working for the writer is a lot harder than she expected. She has a black bird that looks like a crow, which keeps uttering random words. The author herself stays holed up in her room, listening to music and working on her new novel, leaving Reed all alone. Luckily she has the author’s hot son Rain to keep her company.

Here’s the thing I don’t get. Reed’s main job is answering fan mail. She has a desk, reads the fan letters and writes responses, with Victoria apparently signs later. Yet she’s supposed to be a HUGE star. Wouldn’t she get way more fan mail than one person could handle?

Everyone else acts a little odd because McCoy’s had three assistances and something weird happened to all three. Her latest Carl, went missing. McCoy claimed he told her he was dropping out of school, but no one heard from him and eventually his car turns up abandoned. Another one dropped out of school mysteriously and her first assistant Sunny, turned up dead.

Reed keeps the job though, even after Poe (the bird) follows her on campus and attacks her. Rain asks her on a date and since she has a boyfriend, she asks him to join the group for a party at Nightmare Hall. Then she decides to ride with him and blows Link off. He actually mentions that they’re a couple and she tells him that he should have asked her first then. Me thinks she’s taking lessons from a certain Jessica Wakefield.

McCoy herself is a little weird because she keeps accusing people of stealing from her and says that all her assistants steal things too. Reed finds a first draft of one of her famous books and starts reading it, which is actually a little rude. McCoy catches her, blows up and then completely forgets that the fight happened.

Later Reed suggests inviting the fan club over and McCoy flips out, over people going through her things. She forgets about it and invites the gang over. She thinks Debrah looks suspiciously familiar, but can’t put her finger on it. Then Rain shows up, freaks out over all the people there, but gets over it in about three seconds. What’s up with this family?

Link gets worried about her working there, so he starts showing up to walk her home. I think this is sweet, but she gets annoyed because he’s treating her like a child. She skips out early one night and promptly falls into an old well. Luckily he shows up and saves her life.

A few nights later she starts hearing weird noises from the basement, but thinks that she’s imagining things and that it’s just the old house settling. While checking things out, a stack of bookshelves falls on her and she narrowly escapes. The window was open and she thinks that somebody may have reached inside and pushed over the rickety shelves.

We’re then treated to a random party, where a random girl confronts her. Lindsay warns her to get out and stop working there, before she ends up like her sister Karen. Reed calls Karen, who just warns her to get out. Karen then starts calling constantly and for some reason, Reed never returns her calls. Karen decides to take a three-hour bus trip to Salem, just to warn her in person. Reed heads off to meet her and sees Karen run down by a car. She survives, but in a coma.

Yet Reed STILL refuses to quit. She starts finding slips of paper, with McCoy’s writing. The notes are about people stealing, missing things and threats to call the police. Then she learns that McCoy spent time in a mental hospital and Rain swears it was for exhaustion. Yup, she’s totally a celebrity.

Reed finally decides to quit her job, but when no one answers the phone, she heads out to the house. She hears the weird noises again and ventures into the basement, where she finds the missing assistant. A woman pops up at the top of the stars and as she gets closer, she rips off her wig and reveals herself as Rain.

Apparently Rain wants his mom’s money. In her will, she gave everything to charity, but if she’s incapacitated, he gets control of her estate. After she was hospitalized, she became paranoid about money and started limiting his funds. He planned on making everyone think she was crazy and taking over.

He also wrote a few books, which he planned on releasing under her name. He says that she stopped writing after the hospital. He kept Carl in the basement, slowly letting him starve to death. Once he died, he planned on calling the cops. He also tells Reed that he was in love with Sunny and when he told her, they fought and she died when she fell down and hit her head.

Reed can’t get out because he’s blocking the only exit, so she throws herself on the rickety banister. Somehow the banister breaks and Rain dies, but she survives. The book says that his head gets impaled with a post, but I’m not buying it.

The group decides to keep meeting and Reed sums everything up. Debrah looked familiar because she was spying on the house one day and McCoy caught her. Jude still thinks he’s the shit and Lilith has given up on Link because he and Reed are now madly in love. Oh and McCoy is in California, where she recovered and is now writing again. Go school….

Friday, August 27, 2010

Sweet Valley High Super Stars: Enid’s Story

This is a book about Enid, but of course it has to focus on Liz. Liz is all sad and kinda depressed because Todd is away for the Christmas break. This being Sweet Valley, you know that she’s either going to cheat on him or seriously contemplate cheating on him, which is true.

Enid is feeling lonely because she just broke up with Hugh and this makes no sense. She and Hugh break up (again apparently) right before Murder in Paradise, which was years later. That’s part of why she feels so shitty and almost gives into the plastic surgery thing. There’s even a whole thing about how he ditched her for a curvy and cute younger girl.

Enid’s crush on Jeffery is back, but she doesn’t really tell anyone. She takes Liz to the Dairi Burger where a bunch of kids are meeting for the first day of break. Liz and Jeffery run into each other by the front door and get caught under the mistletoe, so they have to kiss. Liz gets all flustered and starts thinking about all their “good” times.

Jess comes in and proceeds to makeout with a bunch of random guys. Okay, okay. She asks for volunteers to kiss her under the mistletoe and then starts eyeing Jeffery. He’s pretty cute and popular so she wonders why they never hooked up. At first he thinks she’s Liz and is kind of disappointed when it’s Jess so he gives her a tiny kiss.

Enid and Jeffery kind of chit chat a little and she volunteers some ideas for his mom’s Christmas gift. One thing leads to another and they make plans to go to a skating party together. She purposefully doesn’t tell Liz and actually encourages her not to come. Of course Liz shows up and is kind of surprised, but not hurt, that they’re together. Jeffery makes a joke about Sonja Henie, which I only mention because it turns up later.

Jessica pretends to be a shitty skater to catch some guy’s attention. We all know that the twins are absolutely perfect at all sports related activities, so of course she’s actually a professional level ice skater. The guy’s name is Brian and he comes onto Enid, knowing her from her wild and crazy days. Jess tries to get in the middle, but he’s all hot for Enid.

Enid and Jeffery go to the movies and he chats about Liz. Enid bought her a present and so did he, which is a little weird. She then sees Jessica, who’s looking at this awful pair of sunglasses with palm trees on the top. Jess wants to talk about Brian and gets pissed when Enid blows her off.

There’s another story in here, involving Enid’s dad. Apparently he’s a ragging alcoholic, but she refuses to admit it. Her mom remembers all these horrible stories about him fucking up their lives, but Enid thinks she’s exaggerating. Her dad’s coming back for Christmas, but her mom won’t answer the phone for him or take messages. She finally talks to him and they make plans to spend Christmas Eve day together.

Enid’s fuzzy feelings for Jeffery lead to her buying him a present. She gets him a tub of ice cream and a postcard of Sonja Henie. He gives her a book of poetry and she feels letdown when she realizes that it’s Liz’s favorite author. He then reveals that Liz brought him a gift of Christmas cookies and he eagerly wants her feedback on their relationship, making it clear that he’s still in love with Liz.

Jeff calls later, wanting to do something as friends and she turns him down. Still feeling crappy, she accepts a date with Brian when he calls. Brian takes her out for Thai food and she barely blinks an eye when he orders beer, even though he’s supposedly changed. He then takes her to a party, where she sees a bunch of her old “friends”. She wants to leave and when she spots him getting drunk, she takes off on her own.

We’re then treated to a short section about Liz. Oh god. She doesn’t want anyone to tell Todd that she made Jeff cookies because she’s worried what he might think. Todd calls, they talk for a few minutes and suddenly she’s back in love with him. Oh and Lila is now staying with the family because her dad is out of town and this includes Christmas. I don’t think I’d want to be reminded of a happy family if I was in her shoes.

Enid goes to see her dad and of course he’s drunk, even though it isn’t even noon. He makes her feel bad by comparing his behavior to the way she used to act and she runs away crying. To make herself feel even better, she goes to a party hosted by Robin and George. George, as in George Warren, he ex-boyfriend, the guy who cheated on her with Robin Wilson.

Liz and Jeffery have a short conversation, where she calls him on all the time he’s spending with Enid. Then, because they’re under the mistletoe, they kiss again and Enid sees it. She runs into Brian and decides to leave the party with him.

Brian pulls out his college moves on her and she’s putty in his hands. He shows her a joint and they actually smoke it. Go Enid! He also gives her some alcohol and now we’re veering into date rape territory. They actually get high and their conversation, complete with the wrong lyrics to the twelve days of Christmas, reminds me of real-life stoned conversations. Not that I would know…

The kicker is that Jess heads up to Miller’s Point with some college guy she just met. The car next to them is way too loud and when she goes to complain, she sees Enid all out of it. Instead of offering help, she runs back to the party to spread the latest gossip.

End’s dad finally realizes the error of his ways. Hey guys, it’s Christmas. He talks to his ex-wife, who realizes that Enid is late coming home and they both get a little worried. He vows to find her, no matter what. Look, I appreciate the sentiment, but she’s like 20 minutes late! He goes to a couple of bars to look for her.

Jessica tells the party about what she saw, just as Mr. Rollins pops up. Instead of wanting all the details, the party kind of turns on her, which is awesome. They make her feel like shit for not helping Enid, when she obviously needed it. Her pathological/psycho side reminds her that she’s the hero and now they know where to find Enid. She maintains this line of thinking even as her “date” edges towards the door and away from her.

Brian leaves Miller’s Point and starts driving recklessly. Enid passes out and the car crashes, but her dad saves her. He goes back to grab Brian, just as the car explodes. Enid wakes up in the hospital on Christmas. Jessica brings her the ugly sunglasses as a gift and she sees her dad, who promises to clean up. Actually he tells her that he’s going into rehab so he won’t be around for a few months. Oh yeah, that sounds a lot different from how things are now.

The book then jumps to a New Year’s Eve party at Fowler Crest. Jeffery asked Enid, but she turned him down because she wants more than friendship. He confesses that he has feelings and they kind of kiss a little. Too bad this storyline never appears again!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Fear Street Super Chiller: Silent Night 3 (R.L. Stine)

Reva Dalby is back yet again and I can’t believe that Stine wasted three books on such an unlikable character. In this one, Reva is back from her first semester of college and bringing along her roommate Grace. It’s hard to believe that Reva actually lived with someone and didn’t demand a single. She thinks that Grace will be fun and when she isn’t, Reva starts looking for excuses to get rid of her.

Pam can’t afford college so she’s working in Shadyside with her friend Willow. The two girls took some crafting classes and dreamed up business making hand painted scarves. She calls Reva and asks for her to take a look at them and see if she can’t get them in the stores. Reva agrees, but then skips out when they’re on their way to the house.

A guy shows up at the house that night and it turns out that it’s Daniel, a guy she dated a few times at school. He’s in town staying with a friend and is going to work at the store. She pretends that she doesn’t know him and laughs as the security guard drags him off and calls the cops. Even Grace finds it a little hard to believe she could do something like that, which makes me wonder if Grace has ever spent 5 minutes with her roomie.

Reva finally agrees to show her dad Pam and Willow’s scarves, but passes them off as her own design. He agrees to buy the scarves for the stores and let her host a fashion show. Pam is a little pissed off, especially when she learns that they have to make all the scarves and only get a percentage of the profits, but it’s worth it for the money.

Reva sets about planning the fashion show and pitches a fit when she learns she has to hire this girl Traci. Traci hates her for stealing her boyfriend, but is under contract with the store. She also hires a brunette named Liza and a redhead who looks exactly like her named Ellie. Liza and Traci hate each other because they keep going out for the same jobs and Liza’s boyfriend Grant used to date Traci.

You just know that Reva is going to steal Grant away, but then they also discover Traci’s body at the store, strangled with a scarf. Reva gets all wrapped up in hiring a new model and fooling around with Grant. Pam and Willow want a contract for their work and when she won’t help, they go behind her back to her dad. He creates a contract and tells Reva that he isn’t happy with the way she acted.

Most of the book centers on Grace, worried about her ex-boyfriend Rory. He keeps calling and leaving threatening messages and then she spots him in town. She tells Reva about how he followed her to college and keeps threatening her every time she looks at or talks to another guy. Grace wants Reva to offer her some help and you know, be a friend, but Reva could care less.

Finally she decides to call Grace’s mom and learns that there is no Rory. Rory was her high school boyfriend who died in an accident and Grace is having (another) psychotic break. Of course they only learn this after Liza dies and Grant walks away from Reva because he feels so guilty about cheating on his girlfriend before she died. They discover that Grace killed the girls because, as she explains to Reva, she didn’t want her to be happy. The fashion show was the only thing Reva ever cared about so she set out to make sure it never happened.

Pam then goes back to the store to get her things and finds a man standing over Reva’s body and crying. He jumps when he hears her and when she gets a closer look, she realizes that it’s Ellie and not Reva, damn. Reva then shows up and discovers that it’s Grant. He was so upset over cheating on Liza that he started blaming Reva for her death because if she hadn’t swept him away, he would have been with Liza.

Everyone starts fighting and Reva manages to knock him out. She and Pam tie his hands and feet up with scarves and wait for the cops. At the end, everyone bonds on Christmas Eve and Pam gets excited because Reva’s dad agreed to stock a lot of their other clothes in the store and under a new label, the Pam-Willow line (lame ass name for a clothing line). At the very end, Pam smiles and gives Reva her gift: a brand new scarf.

What the fuck is wrong with Reva’s dad? Does he not realize that his daughter is a complete and total sociopath? Seriously, what will it take for him to wise up? She’s now been kidnapped and almost murdered by like five different people and now her own roommate hates her enough to try and kill her, not to mention her boyfriend. I wish Stine had killed Reva off at the end of the first book and let Pam have the rest.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Point Horror: Nightmare Hall: Sorority Sister (Diane Hoh)

I actually tried to read this book like three times and kept putting it down because it was so hard to weed through. Basically a bunch of new pledges move into the sorority house at Salem University and that really doesn’t make sense. How the heck do they have room for all those girls? If they only pledge 5-10 girls each year, which is a conservative estimate, that’s still 20-40 girls living in the same house and that seems like a whole lot to me.

Anyway, you don’t really need to know that many girls because only a couple are mentioned. There’s Maxie, our main gal and Tinker, another new pledge, Cath, the new pledge who appeared in the first Nightmare Hall book and Erica and Candie, two older girls.

When the book first opens, Erica is freaking out because someone stole her jewelry box and everyone tries to find it. Then a messenger shows up at the door and the package he brings, has her jewelry box in it. Then the ring Candie’s boyfriend gave her disappears and the same company delivers it.

A bunch of the girls’ moms are coming to town because they were all former sorority girls and someone tosses rotting food on top of the catered dishes. Maxie tries to tell her boyfriend Brendan and best friend Jenna, but neither cares because she keeps blowing them off for sorority stuff. Jenna is especially pissed because Max up and moved out of the dorm room they shared and keeps forgetting to call her back.

A doctor stops by the house and asks to use the phone, but it turns out that he’s not really a doctor. He puts ants all over the house, which scares all the gals. Then Candie’s mom’s hairstylist shows up. Candie’s not there, so she offers to fix up Maxie. She starts acting weird, talking about all the stuff that happened at the house, even though no one’s supposed to know.

Maxie tries to run and ends up throwing herself down the laundry chute because the woman blocks all the exits. She sprains her ankles, the woman disappears and the other girls show up. Brendan tries to convince her to quit and move back in with Jenna, but she’s too busy coming up with random theories about the killer.

She thinks it might be someone who hates the sorority because they didn’t get in. Then she suspects Brendan because he isn’t happy about her blowing him off and she also suspects Jenna. She further suspects Brendan when he tells her he has to skip out on a frat party to take his friend to a birthday party a few hours away and then finds out that he didn’t do it. It’s basically one big game of who did it.

Then nearly every girl in the house gets food poisoning, or some type of poisoning. Only the girls who ate dinner that night get sick, but the cops can’t figure out what happened. Cath hurts her arm when someone ruins their initiation for her and she drops out of the sorority. Still, they can’t miss out on the next big frat party! Maxie decides to talk to Erica and finds that she left the party with Candie. She immediately decides that it’s suspicious and Erica must be behind everything.

So Maxie sneaks around the house and gets attacked by the real prankster. Big surprise, it’s Candie. Erica is now tied up in the basement and Candie has set the house up to explode, based on something she saw in a movie. Does anyone else have a bad feeling about this? The girls start fighting, but help turns up at the last minute.

It turns out that Candie resented her mom for loving the sorority so much. Apparently her mom was hot shit on campus and never wanted to leave. She married Candie’s dad and they had to move to Pennsylvania for a job, but she never let him forget how much she hated leaving Salem and her “girls”. Eventually he ran off and then her brother left too. Candie hated how much her mom loved the sorority and I can kind of see why, because her mom sounds fucked up. She planned on blowing up the sorority house, to make her mom forget all about it.

The whole thing is all fucked up. It really doesn’t make sense. Candie somehow managed to dress up as several different men and women and no one realized it was her, even the people she lived with. Hoh tries to explain it by saying that Candie was a big actor in high school, but there’s no way she could learn how to do this kind of makeup. Then again, I’m starting to realize that none of the Nightmare Hall books make any sense.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Sweet Valley High Super Stars: Bruce’s Story

Bruce Patman opens the book, telling his cousin Roger about their grandfather. Roger has never met him before, but the old man is planning a six-week long trip to Sweet Valley. He thinks of grandpas as friendly guys and can’t understand why Bruce is so worked up. Roger runs off to tell his new buddy Lisa all about it.

Alexander Patman comes to town, full of stories about Roger’s dad Paul and how he was a great man. Yup, so great that he didn’t take care of his son. I get that he did years ago, but he had to know that Roger existed in some form! Alexander doesn’t like the way the Patmans coddle the boys, giving Bruce a Porsche and giving them unlimited spending money.

Bruce finds a way to deal with this, by becoming obsessed with Lisa’s friend Tracy. She’s been in his class forever, but he never noticed her until she got a new haircut. He invites her to a birthday party for his grandfather in a roundabout way and manages to hit another car and damage his.

At a school assembly the kids learn that the Nicholson school might have to close. This is a huge deal because (a) the school was never mentioned before and (b) the school disappears completely after this book, taking Tracy with it. A charity program SAVE is raising money to keep the school going and they need student representatives. Lisa and Tracy, neither of whom were mentioned before, are picked, along with Liz. Apparently Tracy has a little brother who goes to the school and it’s for students with special needs.

Bruce learns that his parents are going to Japan for a month, leaving their grandfather in charge. The party happens and afterwards, Alexander announces a contest between the two boys. The winner will get control over the Patman Corporation when they’re old enough. He gives them each $2,000 and the one with the most money at the end of the month, wins.

Bruce spends some money buying concert tickets to take out Tracy. I love that he winces at the $50 price tag. I paid pretty close to that amount for N*Sync tickets, I’m sad to say and that was almost a decade ago. Tracy turns him down and then he has to spend even more money, when he once again damages his car.

Roger turns to Lisa’s dad, who’s a stock broker. He convinces him to buy stocks for him and spends $1,500 on stocks. The prices go up and he warns him that he should sell because there are rumors floating around. Roger holds onto the stocks and the price drops, losing him $700.

SAVE decides to host a Harbor Days event where local businesses, students and restaurants will set up stalls and sell crap. They don’t charge a set fee for the booths because they’re on an honor system, which is lame. Basically they think everyone will turn in exactly half of what they make at the sales and don’t even check how much people sell either!

Bruce loses a ton of money in a poker game with guys from the club and decides to open a booth at Harbor Days. Tracy helps him come up with an idea for a dating guide. Personally I think they should have released this as a separate book. Somehow he gets it written, printed and professionally bound in less than a week and he can still sell it for $5 and make a profit. I call horse shit on this one.

Roger decides to sell canvas hats and paint any design or phrase that the customer wants on them. Has he suddenly become super artistic? Bruce swaps his paint with water soluble paint and pays a kid to start a water balloon fight. All of Roger’s hats are ruined and people demand their money back, while Bruce sells out.

Bruce uses Tracy to find out Roger’s next plan, which involves selling photos someone else took. Tracy gives him this recipe for her grandma’s peach-raspberry ice cream, provided he give all the proceeds to the charity. He agrees, but actually plans on keeping it for himself. He also considers ruining Roger’s pictures. Tracy follows him, sees him plotting and warns Roger, not realizing that Bruce chickened out.

Tracy eventually dumps Bruce because she finally listened to all the stories about him and doesn’t like how he treated Roger. Both guys sell like crazy at the event and even trade ice cream for photos before making up.

The group meets and discovers that they’re $2,000 away from their goal, so the school will close. Liz finds an anonymous donation of over $1,000 and another envelope turns up, with almost as much, which means the school stays open. Yeah.

The Patmans come back and Alexander throws a welcome home party. In the middle, he wants to announce the contest winner and is shocked that both envelopes are empty. The boys confess that they gave their winnings to charity. Hank Patman is so shocked that he agrees to become the benefactor for the school and keep it open long into the future. Guess he has a good side after all…

Monday, August 23, 2010

Nightmare Hall #11: Last Date (Diane Hoh)

Demi and her best friend/roommate Shannon are discussing the new personal ads in the school newspaper, when she decides to try it for herself. All you do is setup an ad, guys call to leave a message for you and you decide whether to call them back. She’s a writer for the paper and her editor Kevin thinks it’s a great idea. She sets up her ad right before meeting his cute friend Brant.

The ad itself is fairly lame and it kind of makes her sound like a slut. She basically tells guys to call her for a night they’ll never forget. I’m a little surprised she only gets four calls! College guys should be all over that. The first date is a guy named Lance, who takes her to a French movie. This is where it becomes clear that Diane Hoh knows nothing about French.

Lance uses maybe a dozen French expressions and they’re all stuff you can pick up from Sesame Street and crap like that. The movie has subtitles, but he insists on translating for her anyway, even stuff like “oh” and “Jacques”. Then he laughs at her for saying bon voyage because she told him good trip. Oh, hah-hah-hah, I’m laughing my ass off.

Her next date says his name is Lawrence, but it’s actually some random guy named Peter that kept trying to date her. She thinks he’s a loser, but goes on the date anyway. She tries to end it after a movie and he insists they keep going, then accuses her of thinking she’s better than him so Demi ditches him.

The next day she has a fight with her ex-boyfriend Jack. Apparently they were dating, he got too possessive and she suggested they see other people. This is universal code for “let’s break up”, but they actually keep dating. He found out from Shannon that she did the personal ad and he warns her to stop it. Then she has a fight with Kevin’s girlfriend Marge, who also works for the paper and thinks there’s something going on between them.

She caps the day off with a visit from the cops. Peter was found in his garage, with the engine running and passed out. There’s signs that it might be foul play, but they also think it might be a suicide attempt and they ask her a bunch of questions. She’s worried, but not worried enough that she doesn’t make another date.

This time it’s Andrew, a super rich frat boy who only called as a joke with his frat boys, who all turn up at the movie theater to gawk at her. He keeps calling her babe and when she wants to go home after the movie, he drives her to a steakhouse instead. They fight in the parking lot because he wants the date to keep going, calls her a tease and says he knows why she needed to get a date from the personals and he’ll ruin her reputation. Harsh.

Of course Andrew disappears after the date and the cops get even more suspicious. Then she finds out that Lance was hit by a car after their date and wonders if it’s somehow connected to her. No, not at all. She sneaks into his hospital room to ask him questions, but he barely remembers her and remembers nothing about the accident.

She gets another call and sets up another date, but this time she thinks the voice sounds familiar. It turns out to be Brant, Kevin’s friend and they have a great date. At the end of the date, they start kissing and she sees a weird white mist, rising out of the ground and turning into a hand. Brant warns her to get away, but she passes out. Kevin finds her and gets her to the hospital, but Brant disappeared. The odd thing is that no one ever mentions the hand thing again, ever, like it didn’t happen.

Everyone at school starts treating her like a pariah and she turns to Kevin, which pisses off Marge. He finally gets up the balls to ask her out and she turns him down because she’s a curse. She gets a call to meet her at the bell tower a little after midnight and finds Kevin waiting, but then Brant comes out of the shadows. Both guys accuse the other one of killing off the competition and start a fight to the death.

Demi knocks Kevin over the head with a flashlight and then passes out. The cops arrive and it turns out that Kevin was stalking her the whole time. How he had the time with the paper, I have no idea. He was obsessed with her and hated that she was with Brant because he “knew” it was more than a fling for the article. She and Brant kiss and she tells him to “call her”. Ha-ha-ha.

Too many red herrings in this one. Every chapter you’re supposed to suspect someone else: the ex, the roommate, Brant, other dates, other women, a ghost, Kevin, etc. I was kind of hoping it was Brant because he was way to slick and smooth, but it once again had to be the nice, good guy best friend.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sweet Valley High Super Stars: Lila’s Story

I remembered this book so clearly, but I was sure that it was a regular book in the series. At one point I even went through the book list, just looking for a title that might fit it.

Anyway, Lila Fowler’s dad George is getting tired of her spending. Despite the fact that he gives her everything she wants, she goes shopping in every book and continues to shop later, here he wants her to stick to a budget. She recently spent $600 on a new suede outfit and he limits her spending, especially since she lies about not spending that much.

George is now dating Joan Borden who has a daughter Jacqueline who’s the same age as Lila, but doesn’t have the same life, even though Joan is super rich. Lila hates that they spend so much time together and thinks that George should be getting sick of her. Lila is also being rude to her friends because nothing ever happens in Sweet Valley and she’s bored.

The two J’s come over for lunch and Lila hates the way they act. Jacqueline is all enamored of the house, like she’s never seen one before. Joan is too, but she keeps dropping subtle hints about the expensive decorations and furnishings. Lila takes off early, so she can go to a concert with the gang. She meets Evan and they flirt a little, but then she learns that he has a girlfriend Sonja. Sonja has the hots for Bruce, so Lila calls and asks him for a favor.

Bruce meets her at the country club and agrees to help, but only so he can prove what a big stud he is. Jessica then gets to meet the two-J’s when they all have lunch together. Joan acts like the menu isn’t good enough and orders the most expensive thing, then makes rude/condescending comments about how small and quaint the club is compared to Beverly Hills.

Lila goes to the beach disco, all dressed up in some white jumpsuit. Apparently Sonja wears little sundresses and she wants to show Evan how a real woman dresses. Bruce is all over Sonja and she eventually agrees to dance with him. Lila comforts Evan and after 5 seconds, he asks her to come watch him drag race the next day.

Of course she does and of course he’s in shock. Sonja never supported him and never came to the track. They have dinner together and she tells him all about Joan and how her dad is changing. She heads home, feeling better about the situation until she spots Jacqueline in her bathrobe. Apparently they’re staying the night. Joan gives her a gift from Beverly Hills, but Lila still isn’t buying her act.

Evan and Lila meet again and this time he tells her that he’s not happy with Sonja. He broke up with her earlier in the day, which frees him up to make out with Lila. She should be happy, but Joan keeps popping up. They’re now basically living at Fowler Crest and Joan keeps buying stuff for the house. Conveniently when it gets there, she has no cash and George has to cover it. George meanwhile, wants Lila to take Jacqueline around town, introduce her to people and make her feel good.

Jacqueline borrows a bathing suit from Lila and thinks that gives her free reign over her closet. She complains to Evan, but he seems to think she should get over it and accept them into her life. He’d rather talk about his next big race and how he has to pay $500 to enter, but can’t get the money together. Lila pretty much jams the money down his throat and then wonders how she’ll get the money together.

She sneaks into the petty cash drawer and takes the money, making Evan write her an IOU. They then get a chair delivered and Joan can’t pay for it, so George gets in the petty cash. Lila pretends that her necklace was stolen and hides it in Jacqueline’s room. She demands they look there, but then they find it in her bedroom, where Jacqueline moved it.

George then decides that he should throw a party for Jacqueline’s birthday…in Sweet Valley…at Fowler Crest…where she knows three people. Lila gets even more pissed when Jessica calls and says she left word about a concert with Jacqueline the night before, but she didn’t give it to her. She invites Evan to dinner and George announces that he and Joan are going away for a week and expects Lila to loan Jacqueline everything she needs.

Lila discovers Jacqueline wearing her new suede outfit and the other girl lets her real side out. She turns into a mega bitch and basically says that she and her mother are taking over. I’m surprised that she doesn’t threaten her with boarding school. Lila turns to Jessica and then Evan, but neither believe her.

Bruce then pops up and he’s ready to call in his favor, the one Lila promised in exchange for him stealing Sonja. His friend Toby wants to win the next race and the only way he can, is if Evan drops out. Is Evan really that good? Wouldn’t Toby still have to compete against a bunch of other guys. Plus Evan is on a TEAM and that means his teammates should have the same equipment as him.

George and Joan come home early because they’re now engaged. Yay or something. Lila plays the good daughter, suggesting they turn Jacqueline’s birthday party into a combination engagement party and she’ll help plan it. Then she makes Evan feel bad for not coming because the race is the same night, since she really needs his support, so he drops out of the race. Isn’t this the race she gave him money for?

Conveniently Lila overhears Joan talking to her daughter about their scheme. She warns her to keep up the charade because she can’t have anyone find out the truth about him. Lila runs to her dad with the news, but of course he won’t believe her. He thinks that she’s just being jealous. Joan then pushes up the wedding to a few weeks.

Evan starts acting weird around Lila or at least not calling and paying attention like he used to. He comes over for a visit and disappears. She finds him with Jacqueline, talking about how much he cares about her. He even says that Lila doesn’t support his racing. She runs and cries and he sneaks off without saying goodbye.

Lila finds out all about the microphones and speakers for the wedding and hides three around Joan. She confronts her, telling her that Jacqueline let their plans slip. Joan goes off on her daughter and confesses everything. Joan goes out and the guests actually hiss at her. She plays the innocent card and George sends her packing. He then turns the party into one for Lila, for saving him.

Evan pops up and tries to pretend like nothing happened and that he’s still in love with Lila. She carts him over to her dad and says that Jacqueline lent him the money from the petty cash and she has the IOU to prove that he’ll pay it back. She storms off and runs into Bruce, who introduces her to Toby, the guy who won the race. Lila figures it’s poetic justice to wind up with him and rub it in Evan’s face. Go Lila!