SVH #60: That Fatal Night

25 Jan

Estimated Elapsed Time: 2-3 months

Terri Adams has been in love with Ken Matthews forever.  This is news to pretty much everyone, because up until this book, I’m not sure that anyone even knew that Terri Adams existed.  But you guys, she’s totally a real person, because she’s friends with Kristin Thompson, Shelley Novak, and John Pfeiffer.  And sometimes Liz says hi to her, which means she’s validated as an actual human being.  Anyway, Terri’s in love with Ken.  This seems to be her only defining characteristic, aside from the fact that she’s the assistant statistician for the Gladiators (is this like an actual thing that high school students do?).  At a party thrown by Amy Sutton, Terri gets the sads when she sees Amy kiss Ken.  Terri decides to go home and asks Winston to drive her, but he and Maria took the bus.  Ken offers to drive all of them just to get away from Amy.

It’s a dark and stormy night, and after Ken drops everyone else off, he promptly gets into a terrible car accident. Todd’s driving Liz and Jessica home, and they see the wreck.  The police say a drunk driver drove him off the road.  So…it wasn’t the rain, then?  Instead of going home, they go back to the party to tell everyone the news.  Amy FREAKS OUT about it, even though she and Ken haven’t been going out long.

At school on Monday, everyone’s talking about Ken’s tragic accident.  Someone makes mention of the fact that it’s Terri’s fault, and she cries a lot.  When Jessica and Liz go visit Ken in the hospital, they’re horrified to learn that he’s been blinded.  Wait…what?  When Amy finds out that Ken is blind, she runs away and tells Jessica not to tell Ken she was there at all.  Ken ends up in rehab for about a month before deciding its time to return to school.  Things don’t go the way he hoped, though.  Apparently being the only blind kid at a seeing school is kind of rough.  Terri seems fairly supportive, though, and the two start hanging out a lot.  Ken struggles with his feelings for her because he doesn’t believe anyone would ever want to date a blind guy.  His solution to this dilemma is to be a total jerk to Terri.

Liz tells Terri to stop doing everything for Ken and to tell him how she feels.  When she tries to, she chickens out.  Ken gets mad when she won’t read him his history homework, and she runs away.  Ken realizes he’s made a mistake and tries to find her by taking the bus to North Haven Beach, where she sits, reflecting on her existence (and the existence of this terrible book).  He admits his feelings for her, and she reciprocates!  They are together at last.  Also, Ken starts to be able to see light, and it isn’t long before his sight is good as new.  It’s a MIRACLE, Y’ALL!

Trivia/Fun Facts:

  • Ken Drives a white Toyota.
  • Terri’s preferred color of lipstick is in the apricot family. UNFLATTERING.
  • According to the doctor, Ken had a “closed head injury.”  I’m pretty sure this is a made-up thing.

Memorable Quotes:

  • “For an instant Ken thought he was out of danger.  Then he saw a large tree that seemed to be speeding toward him–and everything went black.” (31)
  • “‘You can do it, Ken. Remember, attitude is everything.” (81) [Blogger’s note: I’m pretty sure this same thing is written at the chalkboard at my gym]

(Totally Unqualified) Critical Analysis:

Oh, jeeze.  Where to start?  The fact that this book seems to confuse the word “fatal” with something else?  NO ONE DIED, SO IT WASN’T A FATAL NIGHT.  Perhaps they meant fateful?  I’m not sure, but the fact that the book is called FATAL sets the audience up for something that NEVER happens.

Or the fact that the book seems to think that blindness can be cured by magical tears and enough hoping and wishing on a unicorn?  It seems that in the Sweet Valley Universe, both deafness and blindness can be cured!  It’s like a real-life (fake) miracle spot.  Or something.



One Response to “SVH #60: That Fatal Night”


  1. SVH #70: Ms. Quarterback | A Critical Analysis of Sweet Valley's Most Famous Twins - March 10, 2014

    […] is in danger of being suspended from the team because his grades are bad.  Scott took over after Ken Matthews went temporarily blind that one time, but now it looks like Ken might be ready to take over the team again.  The school is holding […]

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