Continuing from last night’s review of Incarceron, I thought I’d go ahead and review another book that I’ve been meaning to tell you all about for quite some time!
Pretty Little Liars! by Sara Shepard.
I had seen this book cover in bookstores for ever! But I never picked it up because it had a barbie doll on the cover and I had already gone through my Gossip Girl and The Clique phases, so I wasn’t about to pick up another book that looked like it was in the same vein. But oh my gosh guys, I am so hooked on this series! I’m so lucky to have stumbled upon this book over at Harper Teen. They have a great feature on their website where you can browse inside books and even read whole books online! And that’s what I did with Pretty Little Liars! I read the whole thing online. I was pretty much hooked from like chapter 3 on.
There are seven books out right now. The eighth book in the series comes out in June and I hope to be caught up by then! I’ve been checking them out from the library – they’re popular books as I’m waiting for the fifth book – Wicked – to be delivered to my branch. Oh my gosh guys, these books are like drugs for me. As soon as I get home from the library I crack open the book and don’t put it down until I’m done. I actually have never read one of these books in less than a couple of hours because I can’t do anything else until I’ve finished. I’ve put in a few late nights in the past couple of weeks.
So a quick overview – the series focuses on four girls: Spencer, Aria, Emily and Hanna. They used to be best friends along with another girl, Ali. On the last night of seventh grade, they had a sleepover. Ali and Spencer had a fight and Ali decided to leave. No one ever saw Ali again. Fast forward to the beginning of junior year. The girls are no longer friends, although no one would say they were enemies. Aria had moved away to Iceland before high school and is now back, she’s kind of a free spirit/weirdo. Spencer is the high strung overachiever who’s always competing with her older sister for her parents’ approval and love. Emily is the sweet girl who’s a state champion swimmer. Hanna is the chubby girl turned queen bee.
The girls start off their junior year with mysterious text messages, notes and emails from a mysterious A who knows secrets that Ali alone knew. So is Ali still out there, watching their every moves, or is someone playing impostor? And if so, how??
What I’m about to write makes me think about what I wrote last night. About how the reason I think that Incarceron failed to captivate is because you don’t feel for the characters or their relationships. In sharp contrast to that book, Pretty Little Liars has you rooting for these girls. I cared about all of them and wanted everything to work out for them. I wanted them to confide in each other, so that they could have someone to lean on. Spencer’s relationship with her family made me want to cry even though I knew Spencer was not completely innocent. I cringed at moments with Aria. I felt disgust for Emily’s parents (although I can’t remember if that was in the first book, or later, or even all throughout the books I’ve read so far). I’ve wanted to cry with Hanna over her situations and scream at her for being so stupid. This is what makes a book good people!
I also had very distinct pictures of the settings and the characters in my head, so the story ran along smoothly in my head. There was no time when I stopped and thought to myself, now what does that look like? It’s not exactly that I was told what it looked like, more that it was described in the kind of detail that helps you invent your own scenery in your head. Know what I mean?
I can’t wait to get up to speed on this series, and I can’t wait until June when the next book comes out! Oh, and to make it even better, ABC Family has a TV series coming out in June based on the book series! It too is called Pretty Little Liars and is being billed as a teenage Desperate Housewives. I’ve never watched Desperate Housewives, but if it is even half as good as PLL is, I might just have to give it a try. I hope the series doesn’t suck, but even if it does, that’s OK because the books are enough and they ROCK!
What are you still reading this for? Go read Pretty Little Liars!
P.S. Dinosaur pictures to make a comeback soon!
P.P.S. On an unrelated note, I am 70% sure I sat near Ke$ha at dinner tonight. I would be more sure if I could confirm she was in Nashville at the moment. I just thought of that because I wrote dinosaur, which reminded me of Amber’s post of Ke$ha’s song, Dinosaur. Hahahahahahaha!