May 12, 2012

SVH Magna Edition, Return of the Evil Twin: The Girl With the Gemini Tattoo

Posted in books tagged , , , , , , , , at 12:43 pm by Jenn

Insert evil laughter here

Summary: It’s Christmas! But first we have to be reminded of the events of “last year,” when Margo terrorized the twins and supposedly died. “Supposedly” because she somehow survived a huge piece of glass to the jugular, overpowered the paramedics in the ambulance carting her off, killed them, and escaped. Oh, and it turns out she has her own identical twin, Nora. Margo was evil even as a child, and the twins’ stepmother made their father give Margo away. Now their father is dead, and the stepmother is kicking Nora out. Nora finds out about Margo and sets off to reunite with her. And yes, Nora is also crazy (girl can see smells).

In Sweet Valley, school’s out, and the twins and their friends are having a caroling party at Secca Lake. Todd and Jessica are both late, and Todd winds up crashing his car, which almost falls off a cliff. Jessica saves him and goes to the hospital with him. He’s not badly injured, but he’s definitely enough in shock to suddenly consider Jessica the greatest person on the planet, since she saved his life. Elizabeth isn’t happy about it, especially when the newspaper does an article on the story and calls Jessica Todd’s girlfriend.

Elizabeth is already on edge from dreams she’s having that are similar to the ones she had last year, about seeing a girl who looks like the twins but seems to want to kill them. Also, New Year’s Eve is approaching, which means the anniversary of Margo’s attempts on Liz’s life are, too. Todd keeps fawning all over Jessica, which just gets Elizabeth more and more frustrated. However, she doesn’t want to be fighting with Jessica on Christmas like she was last year, so the girls make up on Christmas Eve.

Nora traces Margo’s journey to Sweet Valley, learning about the twins along the way. She decides to finish what Margo started and take them out. On Christmas Eve, she visits Margo’s grave but instead finds Margo herself. The girls decide to kill both twins and take their place. It would be easier if they get Liz and Jess mad at each other first, so they can’t tell each other about any suspicions they might have, so Nora poses as Jessica posing as Elizabeth (got that?), goes on a date with Todd to a movie Liz is seeing with Enid, and makes sure Elizabeth sees them making out. It works, and Liz is furious with Jessica, who’s incredibly confused, since she was with Ken the whole time.

Elizabeth is mad at Jessica all week, but on New Year’s Eve, the twins are helping put on a fundraising carnival, so they have to be at the same place. Jessica winds up going to the House of Mirrors by herself and isn’t seen for a little while. Nora and Margo have been fighting over which of them gets to be Jessica once the twins are dead, with Margo showing herself to be alpha twin. She was Elizabeth last year, and now she wants to be Jessica. Plus, Nora has a tattoo on her arm of the Gemini sign, which Ned and Alice would be more likely to buy as something Jessica would get.

Nora is growing crazier and crazier, now hearing Margo talking to her in her head. She decides to make a move herself. In the early hours of New Year’s Day, she sneaks into the Wakefields’ house to stab Jessica, remove her body, and take her place. But Elizabeth wakes up and catches Nora going out the window, then sees Jessica dead in the bed.

Liz is traumatized, understandably (and it’s actually genuinely sad, sort of), and keeps telling people that Margo killed Jessica. Of course, everyone thinks Margo is dead, even though her body was never recovered, so they write off Elizabeth’s accusations as crazy talk. She has dreams about Jessica telling her she’s still alive and Liz has to save her, which doesn’t help her try to convince people she’s sane. Speaking of insanity, Margo has disappeared, and Nora is paranoid that she’s going to get revenge for Nora’s botched plan. She decides to kill Margo, then Elizabeth, and live out the rest of her life as Liz.

The Wakefields hold a memorial service for Jessica at the school, and Elizabeth thinks she can feel Jessica’s presence there. She figures out that Todd wasn’t with Jessica at the movies, but Margo (close, but no cigar), which just adds to her theory that Margo isn’t dead. Then Elizabeth has a dream about two Margos and starts to think Margo had her own twin. She’s pretty sure Jessica is still alive. When the police come by to ask her more about the night of Jessica’s murder, Elizabeth excuses herself, steals a cop’s gun, and heads to the school.

Nora’s also on her way there, thinking that’s where Margo’s lying in wait to finish her off. Also there? Jessica, who Margo kidnapped in the House of Mirrors. Nora tries to stab Jessica, who grabs the knife from her and fights her off. When Elizabeth arrives, she sees two girls who look exactly alike and can’t figure out which is the real Jessica. She decides which one is the fake, turns the gun on her, and gets her to spill that she’s Nora. That means she killed Margo, not Jessica, in Jess’ bed. So Nora is taken away and the Wakefields get Jessica back. She asks Liz how she decided which girl was which, and Elizabeth explains that, on top of her “twin’s intuition,” she knew Jessica didn’t have a Gemini tattoo.

Thoughts: So Margo was presumed dead and her body was never found, but someone made a headstone for her, dug a grave, and buried an empty coffin? Seems like overkill. Um, so to speak.

The twins have had some pretty terrible ideas, but renting out a carnival for a New Year’s Eve benefit is pretty awesome.

First he breaks his ankle, then he breaks his wrist. The ghostwriter must really hate Todd.

Trivia: Ned drives an LTD.

It’s pretty bad that Todd can’t tell the difference between Elizabeth and Nora when he kisses them.

If I were a cop investigating the murder of a girl who’d just had a huge fight with her sister, and that sister was trying to blame someone presumed to be dead, I’d probably suspect the sister. But when has anyone in Sweet Valley used logic?

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