Book Review: Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later

Photo from: Instagram: @mikagatsby

I have been an avid reader and fan of Sweet Valley High, and even read about them in middle school. I can basically remember eyeing the book collection about Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield in the library of my school and of course, as a bookworm, I couldn’t wait to borrow and go through them. This series, along with a couple of others such as Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys, is a huge part of my childhood.

But despite it belonging in my childhood, I couldn’t help but pick the book up and buy it. Yes, there are little parts of me that are both nostalgic and sentimental. Besides, one of the local bookstores in the mall my friends and I are were at had the book on sale. I picked it up, paid for it and took it home. And as per routine: I covered the book and began reading it. So, here goes my review.

The story begins in New York, where Elizabeth Wakefield is currently living in and working as a magazine writer. As I pressed on to read, I found out what events led to Elizabeth living her life in New York and away from her twin sister, the rest of the family and her friends.

In true Sweet Valley fashion, I read about a drama between Elizabeth and Jessica, their friends and family. I met new characters and reacquainted myself with familiar ones such as Bruce Patman, Steven Wakefield (I found out something about him in this book which may or may not shock you, but oh well, I stan, anyway).

There were a couple of negative reviews about this book, but because I never judge a book until I read it, I went ahead and read it anyway. Overall, I find the book nostalgic and a huge follow up to my running question: What happens to the twins when they grow older?

SPOILER ALERT: One of the twins really grew up and change. But I guess, that’s just one of the most realistic parts of this book.

Rating: 3/5 stars. Let me know what you think?

Book Review: Jack the Ripper Series by Kerri Maniscalco

I started reading the first book of the series back in December 2019. It took me awhile to finish it, not because it is dragging but because of my work. I actually fell in love with the character the moment I got into the first few chapters. I love that Audrey Rose Wadsworth was written the way she was —- willing to go to school, to learn and to work. Three things that were, back then, frowned upon especially if you are a woman back then.

I thought the book to be unique and interesting. It introduced me to characters like Audrey Rose, James Cresswell, Dr. Jonathan Wadsworth and then to the characters that are known in history — Jack the Ripper, Dracula, Houdini and the Devil. Although we don’t really “meet” some of them, we get to know them how Audrey and the author depict them to be.

I fell in love with Thomas James Cel Ru Cresswell. Okay a little spoiler: he wasn’t intimidated by Audrey Rose’s genius. While reading him or about him, I see Sebastian Stan portraying him best. I like that Thomas looks at Audrey and sees him as his equal and not as his obedient wife who will stay at home to manage the household. (Not spoiling you guys, just saying and remember, this series’ setting is at a time where ladies wear corsets and petticoats).

Overall the characters were colorful and amazing. The story was great. And I love, love, love the change of settings and views. There are four books in the series (five, if you count Becoming The Dark Prince, though it is only a couple of pages). My most favorite from this series is a tie between Hunting Prince Dracula (book 2) and Capturing the Devil (book 4). I liked Escaping from Houdini the LEAST from this book and only finished reading it because of Thomas Cresswell (I hope I do not sound biased, but I think I am).

Photos from PINTEREST
Collage by Mika Gatsby


Stalking Jack the Ripper – 4 stars

Hunting Prince Dracula – 5 stars

Escaping from Houdini – 3 stars

Capturing the Devil – 5 stars

Let me know what you think on the comments below.