Intro: I know I haven't blogged in months, and I blame this book for my absence. It nearly caused the death of this blog! It's a terribly boring story that, like most of these UC books, just won't end! Seriously, my notes alone cover 5 pages and it keeps switching back and forth between twin perspectives to tell a story with a predictable conclusion. So please bear with me as I struggle through this one, which was published in May of 1996, according to my notes.
Cover: Apologies for the terrible image as I am STILL without proper Internet and being forced to write this on my iPhone. Shown here we have 4 girls in purple shirts (Ellen is holding the pointer in front of a poorly-drawn party map, Jess is the blonde, and I'm guessing Kimberly is the slutty-looking one while Mandy is in front with some awesome high top Chucks). The back cover tells us that it's a Jessica book (read: brace yourself for some lame Elizabeth chapters!) and that the UC is having a co-ed party. Not to be outdone, those damn Angels are having one as well...on the same night! And they're stealing the UC's party ideas, as well as their guests!
Story: We begin our story on a Thursday. Jess is at the daycare center, eating all of the poor kids' graham crackers because apparently her 3 daily meals and after school trip to the Dairi Burger weren't satisfying enough. As she's consuming the last of the snacks, it's mentioned that the center is running low on supplies. Lila suggests a fund raiser, because Mr. Fowler is currently out of town and is thus unable to solve this financial crisis. Jess loves the idea and agrees to mention it at the next UC meeting.
With that important plot device established, we are then informed that the UC is still suffering the after effects of the tragic UC/Angels split. I missed that book, but even I know that Mandy originally sided with the Angels but has since rejoined the UC (excellent choice, Mandy). Jess and Li (and SarahLynn) make fun of the Angels for being "goody-goody". (Side note: has anyone ever used that phrase outside of SV?!). They're quickly put in their place by some kid named Gabriella (who I'm picturing as a 6 year old Vanessa Hudgens) and her claims that her "major hunk" of a brother (an 8th grader named Antonio) says that the Angels are the best club at SVMS. Because I guess 8th grade boys in SV are concerned with that sort of thing. Yawn.
Naturally, this launches Jess and Li into a panic. It's obviously a MAJOR crisis and they decided to call an emergency UC meeting at Jess' house on Saturday. Kill me now, please.
Jess runs home to establish one of the book's lame subplots and, upon barging into Liz's room, discovers her twin writing Todd's name repeatedly on a piece of paper (psycho much?! I can only hope that Margo has taken over!). Jess teases Liz about her creepy Todd obsession, and Liz declares that she's in live with him. Jess gives her some boy advice (awww) and admits that Todd is "very cute" but about as exciting as a math quiz. Ha. Nonetheless, she's happy that she and Liz still have something in common. (No, she doesn't mean TODD...yet, just boys in general.)
The following chapter takes us to Friday (sweet, I just started a job where I have weekends off for the first time EVER! Yay, Friday!). Oddly, it's told from Liz's POV. Damnit, I thought that the creation of the Angels meant no more Liz chapters! Fuck. Liz is sitting at the stupidly-named Angeliner (wtf, that makes zero sense) and staring creepily at Todd. She's so into her stalking that she's completely ignoring her friends. Since she's spacing on her own chapter, the book helpfully introduces us to the Angels...
We meet Mary and Maria with minimal detail but, oddly, we get a lot of background on Evie. And it's all wrong! Her mother has somehow been resurrected from the dead (see books 2, 3, and 5 recaps) along with her grandfather! They both "live" with Evie and her grandmother, who's awesome and runs a thrift store. The ever-captivating Angels' lunch discussion centers on cleaning their rooms and doing homework. No wonder Liz isn't listening.
Liz has a super lame daydream about Todd showing up with a rose and declaring the day to be Elizabeth Wakefield Day! Lame lame lame. Liz's dream day involves dancing on the beach and her fantasy ends with Todd learning in for a kiss while SarahLynn vomits in the Pacific Ocean due to excessive amounts of LAME. Liz comes out of her stupor and is sad that she can't tell her friends about her crush. Because they're shitty friends who would accuse her of acting like a Unicorn if she acknowledges the opposite sex...I guess.
Back in AngelLand, everybody's whining about how much they miss Mandy, so Liz decides to cheer everyone up...with brownies. The binge sesh is scheduled for the following day (Saturday) at Casa Wakefield. Uh oh!
The book then randomly switches to Saturday. We are spared more Lame Liz and join Jess at the Fowler's pool! All of the UC is present and they're freaking out about Antonio considering them only the 2nd best club! Hey, at least you still outrank the Eights! Kimberly considers this to be a major "public relations problem", to which Ellen (LOVE!) replies "I get along with the public just fine!" Awww. Luckily, Kim has a plan already.
The UC decides to garner free publicity and advertising by throwing a party! The gala event will consist of a BBQ at the Wakefields (because, it's not like anyone else in the club has a sweet house where one could throw a better party?!) and the Angels are NOT invited! Jess and Mandy naturally think this is a bitch move and Li begins to agree. But Kimberly has spoken, and her word is apparently the law.
Chapter 3 takes us back to the Angels pity party. Liz is choosing a sexy outfit in the hopes of impressing Todd. Her hotness consists of an old red sweater, a black and white checkered mini skirts, and black pumps. What 13 year old wears pumps?! That outfit sounds atrocious and I hope Kimberly (SVMS' answer to Regina George) makes fun of it. Liz whines internally about not being able to tell the Angels about Todd. I guess they missed the entire SVT series or something.
The Angels agonize over proper party attire (and I begin to think about how the Angels are actually quite similar to the UC...) and decide that their only salvation is Mandy's "awesome" fashion sense. The Angels basically feel inferior to the UC at this point, so they trash talk the UC to make themselves feel better (see, no difference at all!). The Angels discuss how stupid the UC is because they like boys and have crushes, which the Angels deem "shallow". I guess they've forgotten about that atrocity that is UC book #5 at this point...MARY! Anyways, Liz feels sad because she actually likes boys, and she thinks that she's just like the Unicorns. (Oh, honey, you WISH!)
The Angels mope around Casa Wakefield and Mrs. W, sensing their melancholy, suggests throwing a party to raise their spirits. Because parents in SV apparently think nothing of blowing a ton of cash on snacks for club meetings, their willingness to finance massive parties for the entire student body of SVMS is merely an afterthought. The Angels decide to throw a BBQ...and Liz secretly dreams about inviting Todd. Because the Wakefield backyard will be the location, Liz decides she has to invite Jess but, bitchily, hopes her twin won't want to attend. Ouch.
Jess comes home and announces her intention to throw her party the following Saturday (with no protests of short notice or consideration of expenses from her parents, sigh). Liz is all "WTF?!", and Jess accuses Liz of stealing her party idea. Mrs. W, presumably not wanting to cover 2 separate sets of party expenses, suggests combining the functions. Yeah fucking right!
On Monday, the UC gathers around the Unicorner and expresses their outrage over the Angels decision to throw a party. Mandy is the only one with a soul, so she is secretly sad that they can't combine their festivities. Li decides to offer up Fowler Crest as a party locale, which she really should have done in the first place and spared me the hour that I had to spend reading this horribly boring book.
Mandy's still feeling sad after school so she ventures to the daycare center, where Liz is also trying to cheer herself up. They talk and realize that they miss each other and that their friendships are really more important than their lame clubs. Liz invites Mandy to the Angels party, which has been moved to Friday.
While at the center, Liz overhears the director complaining about the lack of funds. Of course, she decides to further complicate the plot by enlisting the Angels to help with the crisis. Because switching the party to a different day solved the original dilemma, this plot device will surely lead to the UC and Angels crossing paths...
Because Luz hasn't reached her daily lameness quota, she runs into Todd on her way home. And I begin to space out a little as they discuss the weather. For real. Liz randomly blurts out that Todd is invited to their party and he accepts the invite, saying "it's a date!" I imagine that this causes Liz to faint from happiness.
Meanwhile, the UC is at Li's again. They've decided to have a gourmet dinner party with hot new chef Jean Jacques (how much more stereotypical can these books' portrayal of the French get?!). They're currently tasting the menu and discussing when they will have their party. (Wait, I thought they were doing it on Saturday?). Mandy informs everyone that the Angels' party has moved to Friday at 7 and suddenly Jess and Kim decide that they want to have theirs on Friday at 7, too! Seriously?! Bitches. Mandy and Ellen (who, as president, should REALLY contribute more!) are unsure of this.
Jess goes home and tells Liz that the Angels should probably just cancel their party because the UC is obviously superior in the party department. Liz gets upset when Jess tells her about the scheduling and accuses Jess of stealing her date/time. Liz calls the UC "nasty" and "unfair", so Jess plays the bitch card and says that Mandy was the one who told them about the date change. Liz wants to cry, but since this isn't SVT, she gets pissed instead. Oh no.
On Tuesday, Liz is still mad. Mandy approaches her and apologizes for tipping off the UC. She blames Kimberly and says that she wishes they could co-exist. Liz vows that the UC won't spoil her lame Todd party.
After school, the Angels continue their planning. The UC interrupts them and this causes a Unicorns vs. Angels standoff. Liz insults Li's house by calling it "Fowler Crust" (ease up there, baby girl! I know it's not a Spanish tiled split level, but I'm sure your mother put a lot of time into designing it!). Jess laughs at her lame twin and announces that the party has moved locations yet again, and both clubs vow to have their parties. By any means necessary. Or something. (I'm so bored at this point...even my notes say "who gives a fuck?")
Jess and the UC decide to unwind at the daycare center. She gets right to work with Li, tackling the mountain of dishes. (And I noted that Lila doing dishes completely contradicts another book where it is stated that Li has never touched a dish in her entire life!). Kim is also present, totally just there to complain about how much she hates the center and all of the little brats. I agree, can we go to Lisette's or Casey's instead?! The girls ignored the kids and discuss possible party locations. In the midst of this, the sink (much like everything else in the poorly-built building) breaks. Well, that's just ghetto as hell.
We then switch to later in the evening, where Liz and Jess are still fighting. Casa Wakefield is full of tension, and Liz wishes that this wasn't the case as she needs some sisterly advice. She finally breaks down and tells Jess about her upcoming "date" with Todd. Jess quickly crushes her spirits (sweet!) by informing her that Todd will be attending the UC party instead. This angers Liz and she vows not to lose the club war -or Todd- to Jessica, or anyone else! (SVC foreshadowing at its finest!)
In the following chapter (#7, so halfway through this terrible torture!), Liz worries more about Todd (as she rightfully should) and decides to get revenge by making her party even bigger! Of course, Jess overhears this and this means WAR!
On Wednesday, the UC still doesn't have a party location and Jess agonizes over this, as well as thinking about the state of ghettoness at the daycare center. Predictably, inspiration strikes and Mandy suggests throwing the party at the center and making it a fund raiser! Brilliant.
Liz, meanwhile, is still creepily obsessed with Todd. So much so that she's spaced on her party ideas. Suddenly, her thoughts turn to the daycare center and, predictably, inspiration strikes twice in one lunch period! The Angels LOVE the idea, and Mary decides to make their fundraiser a secret theme with a secret location so the UC can't ruin it. Hmmm...
Back to Jess, she's decided that the theme should be a casino night! I guess she missed the episode of Degrassi where they attempted this and it ended with a stabbing...I don't blame her, new Degrassi sucks! The center director loves the idea, and promises not to inform the Angels of what's transpiring. She does, however, feel that this book has dragged on too much and that this whole war is stupid, so she voices her wish that the clubs settle differences and combine their parties. (Wait, how did she know that the Angels were also planning a party?! Curious, no?).
Meanwhile, Liz and Evie hit the party store for ideas before heading to the center. They propose throwing a carnival-themed party in the center's play yard, and the director readily agrees. She promises not to tell the UC anything...what a scandalous bitch! I hope this ends in bloodshed and she's held liable...
To celebrate, Evie and Liz join the Angels at Casey's and -gasp!- Todd is there! Liz suddenly gets really paranoid that Jess will impersonate her and try to convince Todd to divulge party details. She decides to stay a step ahead of Jess and formulates a plan of her own, using Todd as a pawn. (Life lesson- the best way to get a guy's attention is to manipulate him...? I don't know anymore!)
Of course, the very thing Liz fears has occurred to Jess as well. On Thursday, she dresses up as Liz and has a conversation with Todd. He, having already foretold of this, tells her he's very excited about the Angels' BBQ. Later, he informs Liz that Operation Fool Jess was a glowing success. Yawn.
At this point, this book has officially taken me longer to recap than it originally took to read! You guys are lucky I love you enough to continue. *Sigh*. Anyways, Jess waltzes up to the Angels at lunch and tells them that she knows all about their little BBQ. Liz pretends to be mad, but she's secretly pleased that her plan is working.
The UC is pleased with their knowledge and they hang a banner (omg! I LOVE banners!) that announces that maps to the party locale will be available at Casey's. They're also pleased that Aaron Dallas will be attending. (Side note: does Steven even exist in these books? He must be off somewhere with Bruce...). Not to be outdone, the Angels hang their own banner, promising maps at Guido's.
Finally, we approach our final standoff as Friday arrives! The UC crowd into Mr. Fowler's limo, which is being driven by a man named Charles. Excuse me, but RICHARD is the name of the Fowler's driver, so I'm beginning to wonder if the UC is about to be taken hostage by this strange new character. Kimberly, however, does not share my concern as she begins talking mad shit about the Angels and how crappy the Wakefields' house is. Just when I start to think that she's being a total count minus the "o", she starts in on how lame Liz is, and I find it impossible to hate her. The UC arrives at the center and the director warns them not to venture outside because the yard has been dug up and it's unsafe. I guess a water main or something allegedly broke because, you know, the building sucks.
Liz, meanwhile, arrives at the daycare center with the Angels. They're told not to go inside because something broke inside.
The guests, having realized that both parties are at the center, arrive. Bruce (!!!!!! Thank god, this book just redeemed itself!!!) is present!!!! Fuck my hatred of the Angels, I will go to any party that Bruce wants. Neither club has realized that the other is present, so Liz is shocked when she disobeys the order to go inside (most likely she was trying to stop her guests from experiencing the disaster zone inside...I spaced out again so I'm not 100% positive) and sees the other party.
Chaos ensues when both clubs realize that their parties are at the same venue. Accusations of idea-theft are hurled back and forth between the clubs. In typical Jess fashion, she realizes that she forgot to bring the food in the midst of the confrontation (wtf?! Nobody noticed this when they picked her up?!) and runs to the kitchen to try and pillage snacks (from the under-funded center that started this whole thing...hello, plot contrivance!). Liz suddenly realizes that she forgot to bring soda (my guess is that Ned and Alice were like "fuck no, we're not providing food AND drinks for hundreds of teenagers who deemed our house unworthy of hosting their respective parties!", and they simply neglected to purchase anything, knowing Jess and Liz would be too absorbed by their feud to remember on their own...). Jess and Liz collide in the kitchen and WW3 ensues!
Their fight is interrupted almost immediately, much to my disappointment. The director says that they sound like a couple of 5 year olds and that she thought that this whole situation would teach the clubs to co-exist. Her logic escapes me, but it somehow leads to the twins apologizing to each other and remembering that their parties have a bigger purpose- the poor, disadvantaged children of SV! Without any more thought, they agree to combine both parties.
The UC, however, isn't so easily convinced. Kim is adamant that the parties stay segregated, until she learns that there isn't any food! Liz comes to the rescue by setting up the food table (why didn't they set up food/beverages BEFORE the guests arrived?!) halfway between the parties while Mandy sets up the drinks right beside her. Awww. Todd is impressed by the festivities and he rewards Liz with some hand-holding AND a kiss. *gag*. The Angels witness this and want to know what's up with Liz and Todd. Liz is then forced to admit that she likes him and -shocker!- nobody cares! A ton of money is raised, and all is well in SV...
We end with a lead-in to book #12, Five Girls and a Baby, which I don't own. I wish I did because it HAS to be better than this!
*The SarahLynn Summary:*
You have NO idea how happy I am to have this one out of the way! Like I said, I almost chose to abandon my beloved blog over recapping this one, but I've come too far to turn back now. At least Bruce made an appearance, but otherwise this was a complete waste of time.
Coming Up Next: I'm not entirely sure, possibly some TV recaps to restore my sanity. I watched a few episodes, took notes, and was positive that I posted them months ago, but apparently not! I believe we left off somewhere in season 2...