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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Don't Mess With Sweet Valley and Crush My Childhood Dreams

Some things from my childhood are sacred.

And should not be messed with.

Like the memory of my pegged jeans and Guess slouch socks.

New Kids on the Block.

And Sweet Valley High. How I loved those books.  I always tossed a few of those in my ultra-cool bright pink Benetton bag.

Ahhhh, memories.

So, when I heard there was a new Sweet Valley book coming out, where twins Jessica and Elizabeth were all grown-up, I was so excited. Sweet Valley Confidential, oh yes, how I wanted to read it.

I bought it for my Kindle on Sunday afternoon and curled up on the couch to read it.  Oh, scandal, scandal, scandal.

But, wait.  Like why is like the word "like" used in like every other sentence? And the Sweet Valley girls saying the F-bomb? No, no, no.

It wasn't like this.

Even leaving out the f-words, which I guess is how the book is for "grown-ups" now, the stories weren't this bad, were they?

I'm afraid to go back and read any of the old Sweet Valley High books, for fear it would burst my fuzzy memories bubble.

Is there anything from your childhood that you've had experience with as an adult where it just doesn't seem the same any more?



Blogger The Blonde Duck said...

I loved SVH! I cant' believe they screwed it up!

April 12, 2011 at 7:16 AM  
Blogger Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Really? The f-bomb?!? I liked the SVH books but they probably didn't have much substance. But I haven't tried to read one as an adult.

April 12, 2011 at 7:18 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I revisited a restaurant from my childhood recently. It didn't look the same and the food wasn't as good.

April 12, 2011 at 7:27 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Oh, I'm cracking up! Benetton. LOL

I never read those books. But I've watched a ton of movies that I used to think were super awesome only to find that they were not!

April 12, 2011 at 7:37 AM  
Blogger Natalie said...

Oh wow you just brought back some memories! I used to read those books like crazy...can't believe they are using the f-bomb in there now though...

April 12, 2011 at 7:50 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Oh my gosh, the memories you just brought back. Remember the Babysitters Club series? I wanted to be those girls so badly. Now? After a long day with my own kids, babysitting is not my idea of a good time.

April 12, 2011 at 8:04 AM  
Blogger OLLIE MCKAY'S ~ A Chic Boutique said...

I'm a mid 50's Mama :)) ~ have lived on the East coast for over 21 years! Hubby and I both grew up in middle of Nebraska and we LOVE going back to visit - it's like a little slice of heaven back there! The on place we drive by every time that has changed so many times over the years is a restaurant - when we were young, it was THE hangout all the time ~ "Chuck's Dive-In" ~ at the moment, it is another Chinese place :(( But still brings back great memories! Great post!

April 12, 2011 at 8:09 AM  
Blogger angela said...

Oh no! My friend just bought this, and it is supposed to be my guilty-pleasure read at the pool next month when we're on vacation. Even now that I know it's bad, I think I still need to read it, not because I don't trust your opinion, but almost because I need to see how bad it is!

April 12, 2011 at 8:23 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

So sad that they ruined SVH! I don't even try to read them now as an adult, but you've brought back some good memories!

April 12, 2011 at 8:23 AM  
Blogger Rachel said...

wow I havent read those books in years! I used to love those and the babysitters clubs! I'm not too surprised about the f-word being used, I dont remember them being especially wholesome girls!

April 12, 2011 at 8:29 AM  
Blogger VandyJ said...

Candy has changed. I loved pop rocks and zots. Now they just make me sick to my stomach. I liked the Sweet Valley books, but have not tried to read them as an adult.

April 12, 2011 at 8:29 AM  
Blogger Maggie S. said...

How strange? It's like if they brought Nancy Drew back smoking and swearing and wearing jeans and a t-shirt and solving crimes in the assisted living community.

April 12, 2011 at 8:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooo. I am very disappointed. :(

April 12, 2011 at 9:04 AM  
Blogger Evonne said...

I never got into Sweet Valley High. I hate when a good thing is ruined. There have been a few tv shows or movies that I loved and thought my kids would too. When I would watch them with the kids, all I can think is "what did I ever like about this?"!

April 12, 2011 at 9:08 AM  
Blogger KLZ said...

The Neverending Story. I loved it as a kid but as an adult? That damn movie makes no sense and is kind of terrifying. How was I not afraid of it as a kid?

Although I still have a soft spot for Falcor. Seeing it as an adult couldn't ruin that.

Why, yes, I am a geek. Funny you should notice.

April 12, 2011 at 9:14 AM  
Blogger Clare said...

I hadn't heard this yet, and I am intrigued! Trashy or not, I will have to check it out! I am passing this info on...

April 12, 2011 at 9:35 AM  
Blogger A Mommy in the City said...

I had this on my reading list! So disappointing that it wasn't any good! :(

April 12, 2011 at 9:35 AM  
Blogger TerriG said...

Don't go back Shell. Treasure the memory.

April 12, 2011 at 9:37 AM  
Blogger John said...

KLZ speaks the truth, Neverending Story does NOT age well. I remember watching it over & over & over again, and my parents hated it. Now I see why. And The Dark Crystal? Dear god, that's a horrible movie, even if it had Muppets featured prominently.

The Hardy Boys, though - they were my Sweet Valley High. I remember reading one book, putting it down & starting the next. I remember being completely flabbergasted when the turn happened & the crime was solved. I'm 99.9% sure that, now, I'd read overly predictable schlock.

April 12, 2011 at 9:46 AM  
Blogger Tiff said...

I loved SVH!!!!!! I think I read every single book! Can't believe they could ruin it. =(
I used to love Sour Heads back in the day, now they make me gag! LOL

April 12, 2011 at 9:46 AM  
Blogger Sara said...

I loved Sweet Valley- Twins AND High. Remember when Enid got in the plane crash and was paralyzed for a book? Awesome. Well, maybe not IRL, but in the SVH soap opera... I heard not great things about this new one, and I also heard that it's modern but dated (i.e Betsy Johnson is the new "it" designer). Really? Lame.I will probably read it at some point though.

I'm disapointed in the Baby-Sitters Club now. How did I not realize after like 40+ books that the first three chapters were exactly the same in every book, and that they were never getting out of junior high?

April 12, 2011 at 10:02 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

Devastation! SVH and Baby Sitters Club!!!

April 12, 2011 at 10:30 AM  
Blogger Di said...

Oh - slouch socks! Remember pairing different colors together to match your outfits?

Doogie Howser - I was obsessed with that show growing up - but rewatching it now just didn't have the same effect on me.

Now I'm off to see if I can still rock a side ponytail!

April 12, 2011 at 10:30 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I loved the BSC over SVH. But really. They were in 8th grade for about 20 years.

Remember the Super Specials? God, I loved those books.

April 12, 2011 at 10:32 AM  
Blogger Jewels For Hope said...

Oh I love svh books! I am afraid to get this one now though ha ha

April 12, 2011 at 10:39 AM  
Blogger diane rene said...

do you mean finally catching the boy that you crushed on all through high school, only to find out he is a sappy, crying drunk and no good in bed? that wasn't where you were going with that?? oops, sorry ;0)

actually, I haven't had that issue. I was reading previous comments about the neverending story and the dark crystal - still LOVE those movies (and watch them regularly with my youngest daughter), but I think it's because I don't expect them to be good. I watch them with my young eyes, not my mommy eyes (yes, I'm weird). I feel the same way about dirty dancing, footloose and all Molly Ringwald movies - awesome movies as a kid, so those are the eyes I watch them with. if you put too much thought into them, all movies will suck.

April 12, 2011 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

I remember those books. Good times. I can't believe they changed them. WTH?

I don't revisit the 70-80's too much, but I do remember the remake of Dukes of Hazard being quite the let-down. (We have the originals on dvd though and they are still quite entertaining.)

April 12, 2011 at 10:46 AM  
Blogger Amanda @ It's Blogworthy said...

I also LOVED Sweet Valley High books. I guess dropping the F-bomb makes it adult?

April 12, 2011 at 11:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read ALL of those books!!! I LOVED them. I just got all excited when I saw that there is a new, adult version to read!! But...it seems like it ruined it for you. Should I read??? Now all I want to do is flip on my Kindle and order it!!!!

PS-New Kids ROCKED and I loved pegged jeans.

April 12, 2011 at 11:22 AM  
Anonymous Making It Work Mom said...

I think I was totally obsessed with SVH. Like read every book multiple times. Now I am torn order the new book or not????

I bought the DVD of the first season of Punky Brewster for my children and could not believe how cheesy it looked - we have come a long way in TV production! My children (all 3 of them) LOVED it!!! It is one show that all 3 will watch. I guess the stories were timeless!

April 12, 2011 at 11:30 AM  
Blogger Nicole Marie said...

I still have all my SVH books! I may have to order this book too...

April 12, 2011 at 11:54 AM  
Blogger Emmy said...

Oh I hate when the ruin good things. And yes I remember those books as wonderful too. Really I think just about every movies from the 80's that I so fondly remember when I go back and watch just makes me want to laugh.

April 12, 2011 at 12:03 PM  
Blogger Minivan Mama said...

Wow, thanks for the flash back of memories!

April 12, 2011 at 12:04 PM  
Blogger Nicole said...

Sweet Valley High! Remember when Elizabeth got into an accident on Todd's motorcycle and acted more like JESSICA? That is INTENSE.

April 12, 2011 at 12:27 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I was just telling my daughter about those books. I can't believe they went and ruined them.

April 12, 2011 at 12:31 PM  
Anonymous Bruna said...

I absolutely loved the Sweet Valley High book series. I wanna read this 10 years later book! How fun!

Thanks for sharing:)

April 12, 2011 at 12:56 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Yes. McDonald's.

April 12, 2011 at 1:30 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

And Dukes of Hazard.

April 12, 2011 at 1:31 PM  
Blogger Hutch said...

Oh no, I was really hoping for this to be good! Trying to finish up the girl who kicked the hornets nest (taking me foreeeever but determined to finish) and was going to pick this up next.

Transformers, Fraggle Rock, She-Ra and He-Man also take me back, but maybe a bit farther back than SVH.

April 12, 2011 at 1:43 PM  
Blogger Helene said...

I loved SVH too! But I recently read a review of the new book and it basically said the same thing you did, and said how everything seemed more scandalous now (like one of the twins sleeps with the other's boyfriend or something like that) and that they're not as close as they used to be.

I could see why you're dissapointed in it!

April 12, 2011 at 1:46 PM  
Blogger Courtney K. said...

Hmmm....I think I've had that feeling most commonly lately because of the fuss over Justin Bieber. Is this how I was as a tween when the Backstreet Boys and NSync were a hit? Sheesh. Total bummer.

April 12, 2011 at 1:53 PM  
Blogger Theresa said...

I was more a VC Andrews and Stephen King kind of girl. I am pretty sure Stephen King invented some kind of monster that would eat the SVH girls.

BTW, I have given you The Versatile Blogger Award.

You can find it here: The Versatile Blogger...OMG, It's Me!


April 12, 2011 at 2:10 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

I saw this book at Barnes and Nobles the other day and I considered buying it. But then I put it back. I figured this series was best left for my childhood memories. Sounds like it was a good thing I didn't buy the book.

April 12, 2011 at 2:12 PM  
Blogger Rhiannon said...

Oh- Em- Gee!! Like I totally loved SVH!!
But seriouslly, I didnt know they have an adult version. Oh just hearing SVH brings back memories and Nancy Drew!

April 12, 2011 at 2:13 PM  
Blogger NotaSupermom said...

I wasn't into SVH, but I'm jealous of your Benetton bag!

It's sad when they try to make something contemporary and relevant and mess it up.

April 12, 2011 at 2:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh it's so so true. This was a disaster. I downloaded it on my Kindle App the day it came out, eager to read it.. and was very quickly disappointed.

So so sad.

April 12, 2011 at 2:55 PM  
Blogger Sonora said...

I hate it when that happens. Some things are better left to the innocent memories of youth. One example of this for me is Saved by the Bell. I used to love that show. Don't go back and watch it as an adult. :)

April 12, 2011 at 3:25 PM  
Blogger Desperate Housemommy said...

Pleaseohpleaseohplease tell me that it was Jess that dropped the F-bomb and not Liz.

Because knowledge of the book is bad enough. But if Liz were to go all bad-ass? That might just put me over the edge. I wanted to BE her. For reals.

April 12, 2011 at 3:26 PM  
Blogger MrsJenB said...

I've been waiting to see what you thought since you tweeted that you were readin git. I haven't but I've read reviews on Amazon and my stick-straight hair practically curled in shock at what I saw. It breaks my heart, for reals.

I like to think that "my" music from when I was young, aka NKOTB and such, was waaaay better than today's. I know it's not true. I just like to think it.

April 12, 2011 at 3:56 PM  
Blogger Stephanie Faris said...

I guess Francine Pascal is trying to branch out?

I tested to write for that series twice in the 90s. (I don't take one NO for an answer!) They were all ghost-written. Okay, probably not all of them...she probably wrote the earlier ones. But Daniel Weiss Associates was paying authors $2,000 a book to write them. Ms. Pascal wrote the very detailed outline, beginning to end, what was going to happen, and we had to try to write the book in her voice. Not so easy to copy someone's voice by the way!

April 12, 2011 at 4:54 PM  
Blogger Macey said...

This makes me incredibly sad. :(

April 12, 2011 at 4:56 PM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

Pegged jeans, slouched socks, and NKOTB??? I heart you!

I'm so upset about SVH! I used to read them all. the. time! Now I'm sad to read the new one.

April 12, 2011 at 5:30 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

Thanks for bringing back those awesome memories. I had a GREEN Bennetton back pack, and GUESS socks-black and red. Funny how we remember those things, isn't it? I have to tell you I never read the SVH books, though.

April 12, 2011 at 5:59 PM  
Blogger Cyndy Bush said...

Oh, what a letdown! I won't read it, they can't make me. I want to remember Liz & Jess the way they were.
Hubby and I watched the original Nightmare on Elm Street a while back and could barely stay awake. It's nowhere near as scary as it was back then! Total letdown.

April 12, 2011 at 6:42 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

Oh why do they have to go and wreck a classic? Boo

April 12, 2011 at 7:40 PM  
Blogger SharleneT said...

Going back and seeing that everything you held dear has been torn down and new things have taken their place is very sad. You really can't go home, again. And, the lovely little town where I grew up has shrunk even more... come visit when you can.

April 12, 2011 at 8:58 PM  
Blogger Kmama said...

Wait. How old are Elizabeth and Jessica supposed to be in these stories? I don't say "like" all the time, and I thought they were older than me when I used to read the books.

I hate when they mess with a good thing or memory.

April 12, 2011 at 9:02 PM  
Blogger Foursons said...

I LOVED those books! How disappointing that the book is so bad.

April 12, 2011 at 9:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was giggling at the library book sale last week b/c there were a TON of SVH books there!

April 12, 2011 at 9:29 PM  
Anonymous Missy said...

First - I loved, loved, loved SVH. LOVE. That one when Regina died? Oy.

Second - NO CLUE - there was a SVH all grown up. I am so getting it for my vacay next week. Even if it's a disappointment.

Third - yes. Going back to my hometown. It seemed so big when I was a kid. But now I live in a city 10 times its size and it, well seems 10 times smaller than it used to.


April 12, 2011 at 9:37 PM  
Blogger katsidhe said...

WTF?? NO! Yes, I may drop f-bombs now, but my blood SVH girls better never! This is awful!

April 12, 2011 at 9:41 PM  
Blogger Stephanie in Suburbia said...

I was afraid of this!

As I watch some cartoons from my youth, I feel a tad insulted. Like the Smurfs. Using Smurf as a verb and then randomly using it as an adverb or noun? Confusing.

April 12, 2011 at 10:25 PM  
Blogger XmasDolly said...

Ketchup sandwiches, nope just not the same as when I was a kid. Loved them back when, but it doesn't do it for me now. Hi, I'm your latest follower simply because Boobies said you were a great gal so I thought I'd come over & check for myself. Yep, I think she was right. Have a great night & nice to meet ya.

April 13, 2011 at 12:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We clearly grew up in the same era. LOL

I'm so glad pegged jeans are out! (but I admit I might read that book!)

April 13, 2011 at 12:12 AM  
Blogger Tracie Nall said...

I read a review about this book....and it scared me. But I did so want to read it.

Now, though, I'm a little scared to look back and reread my beloved SVH books.

Before I loved the SVH, I was a Babysitters Club girl, and recently my daughter got the first one while on a trip to the bookstore with my husband....I sat up that night after she went to bed and read the whole thing. It was exactly what I remembered (although the girls seemed more like kids to me...when I was seven they seemed SO grown up!).

Movies are crazy. I remember watching Grease when I was kid and singing the songs and everything. Then years passed. Recently I saw it and was SO surprised that the whole thing is about sex. I mean the WHOLE thing! I really did not get that when I was a kid. (and even though I didn't get it, it did leave me wondering what my parents were thinking letting me watch it! lol)

April 13, 2011 at 2:08 AM  
Blogger Lindsey said...

My 5 year old has been watching Boomerang and I keep thinking, wow, I used to think this was hilarious. And Knight Rider. And Christopher Pike.

April 13, 2011 at 9:59 AM  
Blogger We 2 Bees said...

I just read a review for this book in a magazine yesterday and I thought the same things and then I wondered if it would be any good. Now I know the answer is no it won't. So sad! I read when I was young as well so I guess I'll be skipping that book.

April 13, 2011 at 10:53 AM  
Blogger Kir said...

I read the SVH books but they were not my favorite, however they are still sacred to my childhood and then not being what I remember is hard.

I got Riki Tiki Tavi a few years ago and couldn't wait to sit down and see it again...and then there were snakes, lots of SNAKES and I couldn't sleep for days.

I was actually watching All in the Family last night on TV Land and I thought, "This has lost none of it's magic for me" Like "MASH" , it might be a different decade but the message is clear, WAR is Bad, Ignorance is BAD, family is important.

plus all those Brat Pack movies, will never lose their glitter in my memories. :)

April 13, 2011 at 11:53 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Ok so let me show how weird I have always been. I was never into SVH or the Babysitter's club. I fell in love with V.C. Andrews books and series. The intensity and drama sucked me in from the ago of 13. I was so disappointed when I learned the woman who wrote them had passed away, but had left enough manuscripts for 7 other series of books, and they had chosen a 'ghost' writer to write in her style.. Umm yeah NOT they SUCKED seriously. I was heartbroken sooo heartbroken.

April 13, 2011 at 1:03 PM  
Blogger Babes Mami said...

Noooooo I was looking forward to that!

April 13, 2011 at 1:05 PM  
Blogger shortmama said...

I almost bought this the other day and then I read the reviews and had to refrain because they all said exactly the same as you! So disappointing!

April 13, 2011 at 2:24 PM  
Blogger Belle's Books said...

I was crushed when I read a review of the new Sweet Valley High book. I don't like the stories of Jessica and Elizabeth all grown up! :( What they have done is just wrong, because I remember those books, cherished those books, and don't remember Jessica being THAT bad even in her worse moments.

I do love me some NKOTB, too! :)

I'd say today's cartoons are a sad, far cry from what cartoons were in my day in the early 80's. I'm sad that cartoons have evolved into the violent, adult comedy driven shows they have today. :(

April 13, 2011 at 2:49 PM  
Blogger TLF said...

Oh Man, I was so excited to hear about this coming out!! But I've heard nothing but bad reviews. Bummer!

April 15, 2011 at 4:47 PM  

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