Saturday, January 15, 2011

Sweet Valley High #23: Say Goodbye



Todd Wilkins is moving to Vermont! Yeah, don’t get your panties in a twist because he’ll be back in a few books. He and Liz have a long talk and decide that they’ll stay together because neither can face being away from each other. Everyone, including their parents, Enid and Jessica think that they’re crazy. Jess decides that the best thing to do is involve Nicholas Morrow in everything because god knows he hasn’t been through the ringer with Liz!

Anyway, they spend the last week together and then he leaves. They share a tearful goodbye and then Liz spends the whole time moping over him. Jess goes to Mr. Collins for help and he assigns Liz an article on the boat regatta. Nicholas calls and asks her to go with him and watch him race, at the urging of Jess and Liz agrees, as long as they remain friends.

Liz actually ends up having a great time with him, but she feels uncomfortable when Bruce shows up and starts talking about her and Todd. She feels even worse when Nicholas asks her to a party later and then another party at his house the following day. She keeps spending more time with him, but then feels crappy because she’s still in love with Todd. The next time Todd calls, Jess answers the phone and makes him think that Liz is throwing away her life because of him. He feels so bad that he just stops calling her and writing her.

This sets Liz off (of course) and she decides to go full throttle with Nicholas. They spend even more time together and everyone warns her that it’s just a rebound relationship. She considers it herself, but then decides that she kind of had feelings for him before and he makes her feel good, so everything is fine. Naturally she feels guilty every time she thinks about Todd or Nicholas comes anywhere close to kissing her.

Todd actually comes back to get the rest of their stuff, but doesn’t tell Liz. He drives around town, thinking about how much he loves her and wondering if she still wears the necklace he bought her before leaving. He decides not to call her and just randomly show up at Lila’s next party and surprise her. Of course he finds her dancing with Nicholas and looking all happy, so he runs off.

Liz takes off too and drives all over town looking for him. She realizes that he probably went home and finds him sitting in his old backyard moping over her. They have a long talk and realize that it was crazy to expect everything to stay the same, when they’re so far away from each other. They both decide that they aren’t ready to see other people, but break up. Todd asks her to hold onto his necklace and think of it as a bond of friendship and not something tying her down.

The other story is about Jess and how she charged a $100 outfit to her mom’s account. Ned and Alice man up and make her pay them back by getting a part-time job. She starts working at a dating agency and finds a few women for Steven because she thinks he needs to get over Tricia. The one woman never calls him and the other one calls him all the time, but is in her forties and freaks him out. She also sets herself up with one guy, but it’s a total bust.

The last woman shows up and tells Steven she got his name from the agency. She’s a total punk rocker and he flips out, sends her home and goes off on Jess. Later he stops to help someone stranded on the highway and it turns out to be Cara Walker. They talk, go for coffee and he realizes that she’s changed a lot. They dance a few times at the party and get along really well. When the book ends, Jess discovers that after they left the party, Betsy Martin went off on Steven about forgetting Tricia and he ran away from the party, leaving Cara there alone.

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