Double Love – a Sweet Valley High Review

Throwback Books Jami's Words

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It’s been a long time since I read the Sweet Valley High books–over 25 years, I’m sure. I don’t remember exactly how I began reading them. One of three things is a possibility:

  • My Mamaw literally hoarded books. She had multiple genres, multiple age ranges, and she loaned me hundreds of them.
  • Mom and I frequently visited the local library, and I borrowed lots of books there.
  • I also frequented my middle school library and bought books at the Scholastic Book Fairs hosted there.

The tales of twins Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield entertained me when I was a middle schooler, and I have always carried fond memories of the books.

When my friend Kristin from A Simply Enchanted Life and I began talking about books we’d loved as kids, this series came up. What resulted from that conversation was a desire to co-host a series of reviews and fun blog posts regarding the Sweet Valley High series of books. Now here we are, tackling the first 26 books during the 2018 year!

Initial Thoughts

Double Love Francine Pascal

Double Love, Francine Pascal’s first novel in the series, introduces the main characters Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield and their family. The Wakefields are an upper middle-class family (wealthy enough to have a Fiat convertible), and twins Jessica and Elizabeth share a home with older brother Steve and their parents.

Not long into the story I realized there were major POV issues and the writing was so corny! I wondered how on earth I didn’t notice that before, and then I remember I was ELEVEN when I last read this book.

Also, quickly into Double Love I discovered how ridiculously heartless and spiteful Jessica’s character is. She treats her twin sister horribly and has no trouble lying to her and being deceptive.

“Oh, Lizzie, do you believe how absolutely horrendous I look today!” ~Jessica

Elizabeth, though she’s Jessica’s identical twin, is a polar opposite in personality. Elizabeth is self-sacrificing, and it’s definitely a fault. She will allow her conniving sister have her way. In so doing, Elizabeth encourages Jessica’s deception and dishonest personality.

After all, she told herself, if Todd preferred Jessica–and that certainly was how it looked–she would not stand in the way. She’d do the decent thing. Die. ~Elizabeth

The sisters’ personalities seem over the top, which makes them feel unbelievable.

Final Thoughts

Plunging into this series has been a delight. In spite of the unrealistic feel of the characters and the POV issues, I will most definitely continue reading. Double Love has been a wonderful blast through memory lane, and I look forward to continuing on to Book #2, Secrets.

Check back next week for a fun post about Double Love!

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About Double Love

Who will Todd choose—the glamorous Jessica or the gentle Elizabeth?

Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield are identical twins—beautiful, blonde, perfect—but they couldn’t be more different from each other. Elizabeth is friendly, good-natured, and kind, and the complete opposite of her clever, conniving sister. Jessica believes the world revolves around her…and the problem is that most of the time it does. Jessica always gets what she wants—at school, amongst her friends, and especially with boys.

This time, she’s got her eye on Todd Wilkins, the good-looking star of Sweet Valley High’s basketball team—and the one boy Elizabeth really likes. Now the twins are in a game of double love, with Todd as first prize. Will Elizabeth fight for the Todd? What will Jessica stoop to in order to get what she wants? Can the bonds of sisterhood stand up to the pangs of a broken heart?

Welcome to Sweet Valley High… the beloved series by Francine Pascal.

  • Print Length: 182 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks (November 27, 2012)
  • Publication Date: November 27, 2012



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