Cover Image: Sweet Valley High

Sweet Valley High

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I love a good vintage graphic novel, and this did the trick! I was a little young for some of the Sweet Valley High books, but I remember stealing them from my sister and this gave me some of those nostalgic vibes. I love that some of our favorite series like this and Babysitter's Club are becoming graphic novels and comics. I can't wait to read more!
Was this review helpful?
The story itself was extremely striking, but it was a great throwback and covered some tough topics, so it's not a complete loss.
Was this review helpful?
This was ok.  I thought it was good that it talked about inappropriate relationships and the possible consequences of that relationship was briefly brought up.  But overall the story was just meh.  I found the art style ugly and these teenagers looked like they were in their 40s.
Was this review helpful?
Ooh dear the art in this was bad. The faces were not consistent at all. And the girls were drawn to look ugly with harsh angles and too thick black outlines. Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield and even Lila are supposed to be some of the most beautiful people on Earth. Todd looked like Archie, the "new Archie" strangely enough with the same hairstyle and red hair. I'm not sure who this is supposed to appeal to. Women in their 30s like me who grew up with the twins in the 90s or today's teens? I think today's teens would want prettier art (like Fiona Staples style). The story was fine if excessively wordy. Jessica has always been into older guys. I wanted more 80's throwbacks. I think I would rather read a YA novel set in present day about the twins. The Clueless graphic novel was much better in terms of art, story, and throwbacks.

I received a free e-ARC of this graphic novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
The more things change, the more they stay the same. Based off of Francine Pascal’s bestselling novels, . Sweet Valley High has been updated in a graphic novel format for 2019 (pub date July 2019) with social media and more risqué plotlines. However this is still Sweet Valley. Jessica is cooking up a crazy scheme that’s destined to fail with  and Elizabeth is martyring herself trying to rescue everyone in town as Lizzie always thinks she knows best.  I also loved the subtle nods to Sweet Valley Twins and Sweet Valley Kids that long time fans will appreciate.

The illustrations were adorably fantastic. Click on the publisher link in the summary above to see some of the pages. The artist truly captured the twins’ personalities and the Wakefield home in their work. It was also really cool to see new renderings of the twin's friends.

Don’t miss this delightful graphic novel adaptation. It’s perfect for long time favs and a fresh generation of fans to be. I can’t wait for the Part 2 that’s teased at the end. .
Was this review helpful?
Yikes.. this was cringy. Growing up, the Sweet Valley collection was my shit. If I could get my hands on a book, no one could bother me until I was finished reading it. Maybe that was the problem? I enjoyed it at a much younger age? Even if that is the case, I feel like this tried way too much. 
Examples:
1. “I’m not having any, I really wanna lose three pounds.”
“Oh my god, Amy Sutton, what are you talking about?”
“You’re so skinny.”
“Is butter a carb?”
2.
“Ellen, you can’t just ask people why they’re not academic!”

Sound familiar at all? It wasn’t even in an ironic way to reference the movie. 

And don’t even get my started on Jessica lying about dating her older, VERY MUCH AN ADULT, teacher. I’m so tired of whatever kind of trope that is. 👏 stop 👏 lying 👏 about 👏 dating 👏 someone 👏 especially 👏 when 👏 you 👏 know 👏 and 👏 have 👏 been 👏 told 👏 it 👏 can 👏 and 👏 will 👏 ruin 👏 their 👏 lives. Then, with the one twin I actually liked, Liz went on a date with someone else after saying that her boyfriend should trust her and should know the kind of person she is. Ugh. Needless to say, I won’t be continuing on with this graphic novel series.
Was this review helpful?
I was able to read this book thanks to NetGalley. I was a huge fan of SVH as a kid growing up and was thrilled to read this book. While it did feel different from the original, I found myself very nostalgic and had a great deal of fun meeting up with my favorite Wakefield twins once again. I can’t wait to see if any more are forthcoming. Thanks again to NetGalley.
Was this review helpful?
Reading this is sort of a nostalgia trip, but not in as good as way as I thought. In trying to bring the sorts of stories that Sweet Valley High is known for, screaming and kicking into the 21st century, there are some odd moments, such as the use of social media, and the drumming into the story that under age girls should not have relationships with older men.

For those who never read the series, I'm not sure if they would be bothered by the updates, and think of this as a typical story, and have fun with the antics of the twins.

For me, I like better, how the Baby Sitters Club graphic novelization has been handled, keeping it firmly in the 1990s, from where it sprang.
Was this review helpful?
I'll be honest, I hated this almost from page one. It was the "is butter a carb?" joke that made me go "Oh noooooo" slowly as I realized that this wasn't going to be anything outside of a superficial and kind of pointless comic. I am now questioning my nostalgic love of these twins. I know they aren't high literature, but they were fun fluff pieces that had some weight, right?

This comic didn't have that feel at all. It mostly feels vapid and predictable.

Seriously there are these horror Sweet Valley books that scared me so much as a kid and I'm just...I like fluff stuff. I've watched all of Degrassi since it started back up in the early aughts. I like my soap operas. This just...isnt even that. It is lazy tropes mostly. They did attempt to update it -- quite a bit of instagram usage here -- but everyone is so one note.

Thanks Netgalley and the publisher for a copy of the graphic novel in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
As soon as I heard about this book, I pre-ordered a copy of it. I have been a Sweet Valley fan since kindergarten! In recent years, the new novelizations haven't been what I hoped for, but that didn't stop me from getting my hopes up for this one - the first Sweet Valley graphic novel. I have been curious about graphic novels for a while, and it seemed appropriate that my first graphic novel would be a Sweet Valley one.

Unfortunately, my hopes were quickly dashed. Though this is set the summer before their junior year (when Double Love opens), it is clear that the writers here weren't familiar with the original series at all. Plus, it sort of felt like they were making fun of it - they really made Elizabeth and her extracurricular ridiculous, Amy Sutton is there (she doesn't move back to Sweet Valley until Bitter Rivals) and they all drive Mercedes (including Todd Wilkins - who doesn't have any extra money until his dad gets that job in Vermont). I guess brand new readers wouldn't be bothered by these things, but I think that the core market here is die-hard fans like myself... and this is just not good... Plus, the artwork was a bit of a disappointment, too. They aren't pretty... and all of the scenes of the phone screens just seems... lazy. The brand-name dropping is annoying too - and there isn't any of the fun that the original books have. Plus, Jessica's speech pattern littered with likes is just too much. 

I am sure that I won't be able to resist giving a second installment a shot, but, wow - I really hope that there is significant improvements...
Was this review helpful?
2 stars

(I recieved an e-arc from net galley for review) Sweet Valley High was a decent part of my junior high reading experience so I was curious to see how the plot and characters would be handled. The art style was the highlight of reading this graphic novel, however I did not like the rest of this disaster. Right from the beginning Jessica and her friends were the exact stereotype of annoying spoiled valley girls, as well as too many mean girls references/quotes in their conversation. Jessica's plotline/story is a whole problematic mess and made me almost DNF this book, thank god we still have Elizabeth's storyline. Although her boyfriend is a jealous pouty tool who can't even tell when he is looking at her twin and not his girlfriend. Thankfully Elizabeth puts some sense into her stalker sister and I found the ending decently done compared to how the story started out. The only reason I would continue with the series is to see Elizabeth's story and where it is goes.
Was this review helpful?
I remember fondly reading SVH books when I was a kid.  I also found them faintly ridiculous but entertaining.  I was delighted to find this update of the series, though I'm not a big fan of the graphic format generally.  This retains the ridiculousness of the original series and has some good updates about agency and even discussion of non-binary gender.  I like how this has been brought into the current era.  It's fun.

Thanks to Netgalley for an early copy of this title in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
“‘Since when are you this picky? You’re just going to cover yourself with SPF one million and read a book.’”

I received a free e-ARC through NetGalley from the publishers at Diamond Book Distributors. Trigger warnings: supposed adult/teen romance.

When Jessica Wakefield falls for her summer English teacher, she begins imitating her more studious twin sister, Elizabeth, to get his attention. With her busy schedule, Elizabeth barely has time to spend with her boyfriend, Todd, this summer. When Todd spots Elizabeth with an older guy, tensions run high between him and the twins. Can Elizabeth set everything right before they all get in over their heads? This graphic novel revisits beloved characters in sunny Sweet Valley, California.

I have a long and fond history with the Sweet Valley series. When I was younger, it was all I wanted to read, and I still revisit my favorites every now and then as an adult. When I saw that it had been made into a graphic novel, I couldn’t pass it up, and it’s a pleasant read for fans of the characters. I recommend some familiarity with the universe, since it doesn’t spend a lot of time establishing place, characters, or backstory, and it probably doesn’t need to.

The artwork isn’t award-winning, but given the genre, there’s no reason it should be. It’s appropriate to the content in being fun, bright, and effective, and I enjoyed seeing characters I’ve been picturing for over a decade come alive on the page. The story has been updated to include newer technology like texting and more modern slang. Occasionally, it feels a little forced, more like what an adult thinks teenagers sound like than what they actually sound like–but since I’m not a teenager, I could be wrong. I also like the way Elizabeth directly calls out the issues with Jessica dating an older man and why it’s his responsibility, as the adult, to stop that from happening. Sweet Valley has never been what anyone would consider socially aware, and it’s a nice change.

The story is simple and classic, and it shows both twins behaving as we’ve always known them: free-spirited Jessica who’s quick to fall in love, consequences be damned, and responsible Elizabeth who helps clean up the mess and still has time to volunteer and go on a date with her steady boyfriend. I was a kid when I read most of these, so of course I thought Todd was the perfect dreamy boyfriend, but he comes over as a bit of a spoiled, jealous jerk in this story. Given my general feelings on love interests, it’s possible I would feel very differently about him now. In all, I enjoyed this a lot, and I’ll likely be continuing the series if it gains enough traction for sequels.

I review regularly at brightbeautifulthings.tumblr.com.
Was this review helpful?
Such a fun read for Sweet Valley High fans! I grew up on this series and was SO excited to dive into this book. Such a fun new twist on the story and a wonderful trip to my childhood memories. Those who've loved Jessica and Elizabeth will devour this book!
Was this review helpful?
Disappointed in this title & copy. I previously downloaded and began reading the eARC and went back to finish up but it had already been archived before I could read the story in its entirety. If I was able to load it to my tablet instead of my computer reading it before I lost access may have been easier. 

Based on what I did read, I felt the story lost the effect of the original story by becoming a graphic novel. While it sounded like a fun read (I also didn't know in the beginning SVH was a graphic novel - unless I missed something) but executing a story that took place 80s/90s and making it work in a modern society also felt a little strange. 

Maybe I'll try to gain access to this book at my local library if it becomes available but sadly I cannot justify spending money on this book.
Was this review helpful?
I was so excited about this book because I loved reading Sweet Valley High as a kid. I still have all of my old Sweet Valley High and Sweet Valley Twins books from the 80s. 

There have been a couple of other attempts at reviving SVH and they haven’t been successful so I was hoping a graphic novel would be the one. Unfortunately, it completely missed the mark for me. Worse, it failed to capture any of the feel good nostalgia SVH usually evokes and the artwork sort of turned me off of Elizabeth and Jessica in general. Yikes.

While I’m glad there is a revival of the series for the next generation, I’m beginning to realize Sweet Valley High belongs in the past (for me at least.) Elizabeth and Jessica aren’t meant to be millennials or Gen Z - they are Gen X and will always be Gen X. 

Disclaimer: I received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an unbiased review. All opinions are my own.
Was this review helpful?
Argh, so sad about this rating. Am I too old for these?  Maybe the full volume will be much better. Because these are quite short. But I definitely took my time
with this even then. 😕 Not liking the art is one thing but I didn’t even like the plot! Did like the cliffhanger ending though. 

Special thanks to Netgalley and the Publishers for the review copy.
Was this review helpful?
Maybe it is because I skipped the original SVH books in my teenage years in favor of drawn out fantasy, but I thought this book was a waste of ink and paper.  I was hoping to get something like Clueless and in a way I guess I did.  Twin sisters Jessica and Elizabeth are as different as can be.  Jessica is the brainless party girl only worried about her tan and boys.  Elizabeth is academically minded one, with tons of extra curriculars and a dreamy boyfriend she has no time to comfort.  Jess is stuck in summer school drooling over her teacher, who she knows she can make hers.  This wasn't my thing in high school and I guess it still isn’t.  However, if you were a fan of the original books you might enjoy this one.
Was this review helpful?
Fabulous, nostalgic fun! Perfect for fans of Riverdale.  Elizabeth and Jessica are the OG teen drama queens.  This didn't disappoint this 80s girl and then I shared with my daughter who enjoyed the Wakefields and Sweet Valley as much as  I did!
Was this review helpful?
could not review this because it would not load on my tablet.  I was really looking forward to reading and reviewing Sweet Valley High
Was this review helpful?