Thursday, October 20, 2016

Review: "The Sweet Life"

The Sweet Life: The Serial by Francine Pascal
3 out of 5 stars

I actually got this book last year but it took me a while to get around to it and in the right mood for it. But I finally did back in August (so far behind reviewing again ugh) and I enjoyed it, for the most part. I was really excited when the first one came out and it's what got me back into reading all the original books again. This book has the 6 novellas Pascall published online after Confidential took off better than expected. This review will obviously have spoilers from that 1st book but I'll try to keep it minimal for the rest. And I'll intersperse it with highlights just like my regular reviews. :)

"They're ready for you," Katy Johnson, Jessica Wakefield's assistant/savior, said as she peeked into Jessica's double-windowed corner office, iPad in hand.

The first novella starts 3 years after the last ended. Jessica & Todd have a sweet little boy, Jake, who is 2 years old. But they aren't together anymore. Jessica has gotten even more successful at her job and Todd has gone back to the fifties. Were they really back to where the woman had to stay home with the children or have some kind of unimportant job that was totally second to her husband's and could be dropped whenever he needed it to be? So yeah, things are tense there. They still love each other but can't get over past fights. Also, there's some new people brought in who don't help matters.

Jessica's office clothes were Elizabeth's party clothes. Today it was a hot little dark pink DVF minidress with a deep V back. Off the hook the whole dress couldn't have weighed more than two ounces. Her hair was parted in the center with cascades of blond flowing on either side of her face, just the way she'd worn it for her wedding. Her Jimmy Choo heels, which she had kicked over into the corner, were woven with the thinnest pink and silver threads, which if she were wearing them, would make her about five inches taller than her sister.

Bruce & Liz are still together, but things get rocky when Bruce is accused of assaulting an intern at work. We're made to feel very back & forth on whether Bruce really did attack the girl and honestly, I hated that story line. Liz is a reporter on the local newspaper and they expect her to research the story which she does, to the extreme. So extreme, she befriends the girl.

The baby [Jake] looked up with that flash of confusion, just long enough for the penny to drop and register "Not Mommy." The flash was down to a nanosecond and its way to a picosecond, and soon it wouldn't be there at all. Instantly, she'd be Zizzie. Even if it was only for a moment, she had to admit she liked being mistaken for Mommy.

Lila Fowler married Ken Matthews, who is a hot NFL quarterback, and she is desperate to get cast on "True Housewives of Sweet Valley". Lila decides her niche for the show will be spoiled rotten and proud of it. Yeah. Of course, she gets on the show and does some truly despicable things, even for Lila.

Lila might have been deficient in certain disciplines, but when it came to knowing what appealed to people, sexually or otherwise, she overflowed with skill.

Caroline Pearce causes lots of trouble and scandals with everyone, on her gossip blog. They deal with it because Caroline'd had cancer and it might come back. Wow. Caroline never found it easy growing up two doors down from the beautiful Wakefield twins, always being compared to them and coming up short. I don't recall this at ALL in the original books. Her living on their street OR people comparing them.

Steven Wakefield and Aaron Dallas have a baby with a surrogate and the little girl is so completely spoiled, she screams bloody murder whenever they try to put her in her crib or stroller. Steven hates it and is afraid little Emma will turn into Jessica but Aaron doesn't care. The nanny claims (privately) that she is the most high-maintenance baby she's ever seen. And her new friend in the park, the one who has just lost her own baby, agrees but still loves Emma. A little too much...

The Jessica gene had saved Emma's life.

Annie Whitman ("Easy Annie" as she was known in high school) shows up to defend and befriend Bruce, Liz can't defend or even live with Bruce, Jessica goes out with Liam the movie star and regrets it, Todd dates the plagiarizing reporter and regrets it, everything blows up in Lila's face, typical Sweet Valley weekend really.

All the suffering, all the pain--it would all go away in this next moment. She felt like the luckiest girl in the world.

(Those of you that have read this will realize that I didn't put the real last lines of the book, because it was a big spoiler and also, it made me mad lol.)

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