About the Book
- Francine Pascal
Since covering the first two installments of The Sweet Life, I decided to get another perspective on the remaining chapters (which you can sample for free here.) Who better than everyone’s favorite Stoneybrook Middle School, Baby-Sitting Businesswoman, Kristy Thomas?
It’s bad enough that I have to read books for English, and Mallory keeps bugging me to read Misty of Chincoteague, and now I have to do this book report for English class? I mean, a book report? What am I, in the sixth grade? At least one character, Todd, is a sports writer, so I guess I’ll give it a try. In English class we are learning about themes and symbolism and stuff, so I guess I’ll try that out here. It will help when I have the BSC keep detailed journals of every baby-sitting job ever.
Let me catch you up on what’s happened so far. (This is like the chapter two of all my books.) Elizabeth is still suspicious that Bruce really did sexually assault Robin Platt, despite his claims that his business rival set him up. Elizabeth goes behind his back and befriends the accuser, hoping to find out information. After Bruce is arrested for attempting to break into Robin’s house, his private investigator finds out that Elizabeth’s name was on the lease. Bruce confronts Elizabeth and gets so angry that he grabs her wrists, and Elizabeth runs away. What a wimp! I would have fought back and given him dead-leg. The Pike triplets do that to me all the time.
Too bad, because she was living in a mansion with Bruce. I live in a mansion too, because my mother married that icky Watson. But did you also know that even though I live in a mansion I’m not snobby? I just wanted to make sure you knew that.
Meanwhile, that evil Caroline Pierce broke the news that Jessica “slept” with Liam, and her husband Todd got angry and left her. First of all, what’s wrong with sleeping at someone’s house? The BSC does it all the time. Sometimes we even get pizza (with celery sticks for Stacey, natch). Oh, I’ll bet Todd was mad because he wasn’t invited. I know how he feels. It’s like how Mary Anne was my best friend forever but then that dirty hippie Dawn came into the picture. ALFALFA SPROUTS ARE NOT LUNCH, DAWN! I mean, really!
Lila is on a reality show, and bad-mouthed her husband Ken on camera, and he left her. She decided to pretend that she was pregnant to get more attention and to win Ken back…wait, what? Did someone say pregnant? Does she have a baby-sitter yet? I know a ton about babies. One time I took care of six of them at once. I’ve even taken baby-care classes.
So, that about takes us up to where we start #3. Bruce is in a jail cell, where the paparazzi are going nuts. This Bruce must be as popular as Cam Geary? He’s upset that Elizabeth doesn’t bail him out. He knows this break-in wouldn’t be good for the case, so he flees to his villa in France. That seems kinda dumb. Why didn’t he just call an emergency meeting of the Baby-Sitters Club? That always solves everything for us.
Meanwhile, Elizabeth tries to investigate Robin Platt’s background. It’s like a mystery! We solve a lot of mysteries, like Mary Anne’s missing cat and ghosts in secret passages. All you need to do is not tell your parents about anything and take on crimes yourself. She has Aaron Dallass go undercover as an intern at Bruce’s rivals’ company to try and find info about Robin Platt and to see if she works for him. Then Elizabeth visits Kentucky to try and find more out about Robin’s upbringing. She visits a rehab center and finds out that Robin Platt is really Mona Wilson, and had a drug problem. You know, I’m not sure what a rehab center is but I have heard Watson say that my friend Claudia Kishi will probably end up in one. “Have you seen what that child wears? The girl has bones in her hair and fruit glued to her clothes,” I heard him say to my mother once when the BSC was over at the mansion. “I wonder if she’s been inhaling her paints too much, if you know what I mean.”
Where was I? Oh yes. Elizabeth finds out that Mona Wilson took her friend Robin Platt’s name when her friend had a sex change operation and became Robert Platt. (I am too young to even understand that sentence). She confronts Mona and it turns out that Mona has a drug problem and stole from the company, so Rick Warren said that if she pretended that Bruce Patman attacked her, he wouldn’t call the police. To prove it, Mona had tapes of her and Rick Warner having sleepovers. Except that there was no pizza or sleeping bags at this sleepover. Jeez, I wonder what they did for fun then?
Meanwhile, Bruce is at his villa in France with Annie Whitman and refuses to call Elizabeth. Wow, this is like a Super Special! I wonder if someone is going to form a special friendship with a kid with cancer or get lost in a famous place, you know, like what always happens in a Super Special.
Ugh, I was wrong. Annie Whitman and Bruce Patman have a lot of sexy time except that they keep stopping and starting. I don’t understand adults and I don’t want to be one. I don’t want a boy to take his clothes off in front of me. Ew, smelly boy socks! Gross. Apparently Annie and Bruce did “it” a lot in high school. Ew, I hope Charlie isn’t doing “it” in the station wagon that he drives me to meetings in. Annie thinks that doing “it” with Bruce will compromise the case and she doesn’t want to betray Elizabeth, her best friend.
Lila is the star of the reality show True Housewives of Sweet Valley, and she faked being pregnant so her husband, Ken Matthews would love her again. I am only thirteen, but that even I know that sounds like a horrible idea. To make someone love you, you have to organize a parade with the neighborhood kids. Duh, I thought everyone knew that. But, ironically she finds out that she is actually pregnant. (Please let me get extra credit for using the word “ironical” in this book report.) Also, remind me to ask Mom how people get pregnant. As far as I know, you buy babies from Vietnam and give them two first names. After fighting a lot, Ken finally feels Lila’s belly and says he loves her again. This Lila seems really shallow, mean, and a pain in the ass, even worse than Cokie Mason. She doesn’t care about anything except something called stilettos and short skirts to get what she wants and how nice her townhouse is. I just want to say that her townhouse is probably not as big as my mansion.
Jessica and Todd were separated and Jessica was angry because she thought he was going out with a coworker named Sarah, and Todd read on something called TMZ that she was dating Liam the movie star. TMZ reports a lot on these people, it must be their local paper. Sarah does something to Todd that makes him let out a “guttural moan.” I don’t think I want to know anymore about that.
Liam wants to marry Jessica but Jessica realizes she really just wants Todd back. Jessica finds out that Liam has been talking to her friends and boss pretending to be her and ruining her relationships. Finally, Liam comes over and won’t leave until Jessica says she loves him and does “it” with him. This part of the book was scary because Liam suddenly turns mean and rips Jessica’s clothes and hurts her and holds her down and I think he wants to do “it”. If this is what “it” is, I can see why my parents decided to adopt.
At the very last minute, Todd stops by because he thinks Jessica is neglecting their son, and sees Liam attacking Jessica and punches him. She is saved and she and Todd decide to love each other again, and this whole storyline could have been solved a zillion times quicker if they had regular meetings, like the BSC, so they wouldn’t have to keep misunderstanding each other. Boys problems always ruin everything. You would not believe how much time we waste in BSC meetings talking about Logan and Mary Anne’s issues. Logan, Tigger, Logan, her strict father, Paris, Logan. I swear, I don’t know why I put up with her.
The only part of this book I liked was about Aaron and Steven’s baby. Aaron and Steven are married, even though they are both boys. They have a baby named Emma, and Aaron spoils her and Steven is annoyed. In fact, Steven is afraid that Emma will turn out like his sister Jessica, which apparently is the worst thing that could happen. Emma screams loudly whenever Aaron is not holding her. Ugh, that is so “Lucy Newton” of her! The boy and the boy hire a nanny for Emma, who was at the park and meets a woman who ends up kidnapping Emma when her back was turned.
There’s mass chaos when they try and find the baby. It’s so exciting! None of the babies I have sat for have never been kidnapped. In fact, that’s the motto of The Baby-Sitters Club. Finally, the kidnapper, who is actually the birth mother, gave Emma back ’cause she couldn’t stand Emma’s screaming and fussiness. Steven admits that it was a good thing that Emma was spoiled because it saved her life! They decide that they are going to continue to spoil her. I dropped my Kid-Kit when I read this. I mean, REALLY? That’s how they think they should raise a child? I can’t believe they didn’t consult with neighborhood thirteen-year old girls on this. It’s baffling.
All the characters are reunited at Bruce Patman’s big press conference about his declaration of innocence. Elizabeth thinks that Bruce will forgive her. Instead, he announces his love for Annie Whitman, his lawyer. I believe this is what literature calls a “cliffhanger.”
Now that I’ve told you everything that happens, this is the part where I tell you the themes of the book. I found a few:
1. When all is said and done, being married is not any different than dating in middle school. If couples fight and make up a lot, it is because they are truly in love. Talking about issues, clear communication, and trust don’t really seem to matter. Just fall into each other’s arms passionately, talk about nothing but your relationship to each other, have explosive argument, move out, then repeat cycle. This book made me never want to be married if it is like this. I mean, I never want to be married to a man….
2. You know you’ve made it when you and everyone you know have a blog written specifically about you, and all your friends are headlines on TMZ. Also, what’s a blog?
3. Being beautiful and attractive are the most important thing in the world. However, it’s a curse that the Wakefields need to bear. In fact, despite your personality, you will be so beautiful that a famous movie star will want to force himself on you, your boss will always want to date you, and you can’t go out in public. See #2.
4. Whatever you want to be when you grow up will automatically appear as an opportunity wherever you live, even if it is not a major metropolis. Want to be a writer? There’s a star reporter job just waiting for you! Good at high school football? You will be drafted as the quarterback to the NFL team nearest to your house! Good at screaming for attention? A reality show will be filmed in your town! Good at being in the spotlight? An important PR company will rocket you to the top, and your PR campaign on cosmetics will dominate the trending topics on Twitter. Also, what’s Twitter?
5. The purpose of having children is so that there will always be someone that loves you the most out of anyone, and you’ll never be alone. I had originally thought it was so you can become a permanent baby-sitter. I mean, isn’t that the dream?
So, it seems that there are going to be more sequels in the future. I am definitely going to read The Secret Garden instead of those next time. Also, I hope this book report will give me a high enough grade so I won’t have to retake English in summer school. I have a performing-arts-snowboarding-adventure-space camp that the BSC is organizing for the neighborhood kids.
-Kristy Thomas, Stoneybrook Middle School, Grade Eight
About the Contributor:
Robin Hardwick is the founder of the Sweet Valley High-devoted site, The Dairi Burger.