So I STILL don't have book #24, Memories. I thought I'd wait until I got it...then I got distracted by moving, new job etc. By the way, my brother saw my SVH collection when he was helping me move and he looked at me like I had brain damage. Which I probably do. But screw that, I miss this ridiculous blog! So, on to #25, Nowhere to Run. Don't be fooled by the dramatic title, this book is not all that thrilling.
On the cover we have Emily looking distraught and Saint Liz comforting her. So creative. I don't blame the artist. Not their fault that nearly every book involves Elizabeth comforting/counseling/patronizing someone. Emily is also wayyyy prettier than Liz. Funny how the other characters are often better looking than the legendary Wakefields on the covers.
Naturally the book starts off with the obligatory description of the Wakefield (gorgeous, heart-shaped faces, shiny blond hair yadda yadda yadda). Jessica is described as being on "Jessica Standard Time" which is a cutesy way of saying that she's chronically late to everything and too selfish too care about how that may inconvenience others. People that are always late drive me freaking nuts. Annoying.
The Wakefield grandparents are coming to town, and the twins are super stoked. (Yeah I just used the word stoked. I'm bringin' it back.) While Jessica is gushing over the upcoming grandparent visit, Liz is distracted by Droid's drummer Emily Mayer, who appears to be upset. It's like Elizabeth has a radar for people in distress. Someone is having a problem? I MUST MEDDLE! Em and Droids singer Dana are discussing the baby that Em's step mom just had. Dana thinks it must be fun having a new baby around the house, Emily (and me) disagree. Emily makes a dramatic exit, yelling about how her step mom Karen wants to get rid of her and how she won't let that happen. Liz furrows her brow and acts concerned.
Emily isn't being dramatic-Karen really is out to get her. Ever since she had baby Karrie (don't you love the K theme? Is this where Kris Kardashian got the idea?) she's been threatening to send Emily to boarding school. She's convinced Em's dad that the Droids are too wild (HAHAHAHA) and a bad influence. She's a real-life evil stepmother!
Emily joins the school newspaper to make Karen happy, and ends up pouring her heart out to Liz. Elizabeth does her typical concerned routine and it's all very touching. Yawn. Emily bores me. Liz bores me. I'm bored.
So on to the Wakefield grandparents visit! Grandpa and Grandma Wakefield are charming and perfect..and mama Alice is jealous. Yes, Alice is jealous of the attention her in-laws are getting from the twins. She dramatically tells Ned that she must have been neglecting the twins and that she feels like she's "lost touch" with them. Was she ever in touch with them? Even in the SVKids and Twins books, she wasn't paying much attention to them. The whole thing is stupid. (I don't like this book..is it obvious yet?)
Meanwhile, in Emily-land, Evil Karen is forcing Em to babysit and treating her like an indentured servant. Emily's dad seems to be totally oblivious. The one bright spot in Emily's dreary existence is her blossoming friendship/romance with Droids drummer Dan. I don't think band members dating is a good idea, but hey, I'm freakin' tone deaf so what do I know about these things. ('sobs' I'll NEVER get to be in the Droids! So many crushed dreams.)
Before I go further let me mention that Emily's mom is not dead-that's just what she tells everyone. Truth is, her mom ran off with some other guy. You don't want news like that to get around Sweet Valley- cheating is only okay if you're Jessica Wakefield.
Emily invites Dan over to show him her new drum something or other, and Karen flies off the handle. Psycho Karen screams at her and even calls her a "tramp just like her mother". Dayum. It's super awkward for Dan and he leaves. What's the first thing Emily does after this embarrassing scene? Uh-huh..she calls Elizabeth. Never saw that coming. She goes to the Wakefield home and is comforted by Grandma Wakefield, who is actually pretty likeable. A likeable Wakefield? I must be getting soft in my old age.
Em tries to talk with her dad, who refuses to believe that he married a two-faced monster. She avoids Dan and Dan confides in-barf- Elizabeth. Not a close friend, nope, of course not. Liz should really just open a counseling office at the school. I don't recall SVH having a school counselor...maybe they just figure Liz already does it, so why bother? Liz gives her typical vague, useless advice.
The poor girl is so distraught that she decides to sell her drums, hoping that it will placate Super Bitch Karen. Dan buys the drums "for a friend", because he knows she's gonna regret selling them. Aw that's sweet. I'm actually not being sarcastic.
The major dramatic event of this seemingly never-ending book is when Emily saves baby Karrie from choking. Karrie chokes, Karen starts to lose it, Em slaps her to snap her out of it and performs the Heimlich maneuver on Karrie. Em's dad walks in and sees Karen sobbing and holding the baby, and assumes that Emily tried to hurt Karrie. He acts completely unreasonable and kicks Emily out. I'm starting to understand why Emily's mom ran off with another guy.
Speaking of her mom, Emily is at her wit's end and starts planning to take a bus to Chicago and live with her mother. The plan falls apart when Emily discovers that her mom ran off to Mexico with some guy awhile ago and never bothered to tell her. More boring stuff happens. Emily ends up at the Wakefield home again. Krazy Karen and Em's dad go there to talk to her, and everything is sorted out. They apologize to Emily and they all reunite right there at the magical Wakefield residence. Dan surprises Emily with her drums, and they admit to liking each other, I guess. I wasn't really paying attention.
Throughout this engaging novel there's some more crap about how Alice is jelly over all of the attention grandpa and grandma are getting. Dumb. The twins pick up on this and have a special dinner or something to soothe Alice's hurt feelings. Once again, dumb.
Thank God this book is over. I already know the next book is gonna be much better because it involves Regina and a cray cray hostage situation! Bring it on!
Moral of this lame story? Don't save your baby half-sister from choking because your dad will blame you. Don't be too nice to your grandparents, cause' your mom will get jealous. Don't sell your drum set!