SVH #24: Memories

10 May

Estimated Elapsed Time: 3 weeks


Steven Wakefield is realizes that he kind of likes Cara Walker, who has grown up a lot since her parent’s divorce.  But he’s also feeling guilty about moving on from Tricia Martin.  This is exacerbated by the fact that Betsy Martin won’t let Steven forget her and goes off at him at a party about how he’s betraying Tricia’s memory.  Steven angsts a lot about what it means to hold onto Tricia while also living his own life.

Liz is dealing with Todd-moving-away-aftermath.  She swears she sees him at school, and then again at the mall.  Finally, she realizes that it’s not Todd but a guy who looks remarkably like him and attends the nearby high school Big Mesa.  Not-Todd’s name is Michael, and he’s the captain of the rival volleyball team SVH is playing against in an upcoming match for charity.  There’s a dance afterward, too.  SVH wins the match, and Michael hits on Liz and tells her he’ll see her at the dance.

Steven goes to the dance with Betsy and when Cara tries to say hello to him, he blows her off.  He’s a complete tool and after Jessica basically gives Steven the business (Hi, Tricia’s dead?  Cara has a pulse.), he asks Cara out.  They go on a picnic, have a lovely time, and he takes her out to dinner for her birthday.  But the Valley Inn is where he had his last date with Tricia, and he freaks out again, leaving Cara at the restaurant and spending the entire next day with Betsy, looking at pictures of Tricia.

Liz dances with Michael but soon realizes he’s a jerk.  I guess just because he looks like Todd doesn’t mean he has the personality of Todd.

Elizabeth sees how much Cara is hurting and goes over to Betsy’s house to make her see reason.  She agrees and sets a plan in motion to have Steven and Cara reunite under the clock at SVH.  She gives them her blessing and all is well again.

The B-Plot involves Jessica overhearing her mother talk on the phone to Winston Egbert’s mom about a relative who is visiting who also seems to be a movie director.  Jessica gets it into her head that she’ll be discovered and decides to use Winston as her way in.  She hints about going to the dance together, but he’s in charge of the food and is focused on that.  She works with him on a school project and finally meets the relative, and when she tells him she’s very interested in his work, he seems surprised but pleased.  The two sit down to go over his latest plans, and it’s then that Jessica discovers that this relative is not a director (his brother is and couldn’t make it) but an engineer.  Yawn.

Memorable Quotes:

  • “Although she had a reputation as a gossip and a flirt, Cara now displayed a sensitivity and maturity beyond her years.” (38)
  • “I’m sorry for that, Steven.  I am.  But I can’t compete with a ghost.  And the truth is, I don’t even want to.” (120)

Trivia/Fun Facts:

  • Apparently Mr. Collins’s English class is in room 103, and he greets his students with a, “Good morning, Scholars.”
  • Steven Wakefield is named after Ned’s best friend from college who died in a car crash.

(Totally Unqualified) Critical Analysis:

Can we just talk for a minute about what a total douche truck Steven is in this book?  He runs so hot and cold with Cara that it makes your head spin.  He likes her, he’s guilty.  He likes her a lot, he’s reminded constantly of Tricia.  Not only is his coldness toward her at the dance completely RUDE and unacceptable, but leaving her in the middle of the restaurant ON HER BIRTHDAY?  Pretty much inexcusable, save for an incidence of explosive diarrhea or something.

There’s also the complete idiocy of the plot point involving Liz and Michael, who looks like Todd.  Everyone is okay with the fact that Liz is interested in this kid based solely on the fact that he looks like Todd.  Gentle readers, I can’t be the only person who finds this disturbing.  It’s a theme that is explored in other books as well, with Tricia Martin doppelgangers.  Liz is interested in this boy because he reminds her of Todd.  There’s got to be a Freudian theory for that.


3 Responses to “SVH #24: Memories”

  1. mediumcore May 6, 2015 at 8:34 am #

    I just finished this book the other day and was thinking about all the instances of dopplegangers throughout the series (even the twins themselves are shadow/mirror images of each other. Plus, there are the doppleganger’s dopplegangers, Margo and Nora). Not to mention all the love interest dopplegangers. I’m sure I’m reading way too much into it, but it always brings out the English major in me.

    If you’re ever looking to read other SV recaps, my blog is

    • Clementine Bojangles May 6, 2015 at 8:36 am #

      If you are reading too much into it, you can comfort yourself with the fact that you’re not alone.

      I will definitely check out your blog! Thanks for commenting.


  1. SVH: Elizabeth’s Secret Diary, Vol. I | A Critical Analysis of Sweet Valley's Most Famous Twins - July 16, 2014

    […] that, we’re treated to a retread of #29, where Steven mopes about his dead fucking girlfriend and his new feelings for Cara.  Liz also chases a Todd lookalike around Sweet Valley (DOPPELGANGER […]

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