Sunday, April 29, 2012
Book Review of #3 The Fowlers of Sweet Valley by Francine Pascal
Author: Francine Pascal
Publisher: Bantam books
Part of a Series: The Sweet Valley Saga
Type of book: 1773-1989, France, multi-generational saga, SV
Year it was published: 1996
Discover the sweeping, romantic history of the men and women who made Lila Fowler who she is today!
Beautiful sixteen-year-old Lili de Beautemps is rescued from guillotine during the French Revolution by a dashing young man--but he disappears before she can even thank him. Will Lili ever see him again?
While working as a maid in the Marquis de Bocage's chateau, Celeste Chardin unexpectedly wins the love of the Marquis's son, Marc. Will Marc give up his family riches to be with her?
Wild and reckless Rose de Bocage grew up with Pierre Oiseleur in the turbulent 1890s. But when Pierre declares his everlasting love for Rose, she tells him she'll never settle down. Will she regret that decision forever?
Isabelle Eastman thought her true love, Jacques Oiseleur, had been killed in World War I. But he miraculously survived. Jacques returns to Isabelle--only to learn she has married his best friend.
In 1968, George Fowler falls in love with Grace Doret, the daughter of his parents' archenemies. Against all odds, he must transform into the man of her dreams. . . .
The characters actually felt real and somehow vivid within this novel, that is I was able to know and understand what they felt and when they felt. I do wish I could know the reason of why a certain family name was changed into what it was, and I felt that there should be more stories about the men in the lives instead of only the women.
There's always hope for love.
This is in third person narrative from the women, and few times its from the men, but very briefly. The stories are engaging. intriguing and somehow full of hope. The setting as well takes place in France, although I think it tends to be a potted version of French history, and not even completely explored as I had hoped.
Francine Pascal (born May 13, 1938) is an author best known for creating the Sweet Valley series of young adult novels. Sweet Valley High was the backbone of the collection, and was made into a popular television series.  There were also several spin-offs, including The Unicorn Club and Sweet Valley University. Although most of these books were published in the 1980s and 1990s, they have remained popular such that several titles have been re-released in recent years. (From Wiki.)
It's ironic that when I was a teenager, I detested this book and thought it boring, but now I think its the best of Sweet valley Saga. I'm not sure why. The characters feel real somehow, they don't resemble the cardboard characters of the Wakefield Twins; the setting and all is different, and a few generations are cut out of the story. The story is that of a wealthy woman falling in love with a poor man which is a refreshing change.
3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)