Monday, May 20, 2013
Beach Party by R.L Stine
This is the first R.L Stine book I have read for teenagers, and whilst I enjoyed us, all I kept thinking the whole time I was reading the book, "I am glad that my daughter didn't have the attitude and self-righteousness of the two teenage girls depicted in this book. "It is essentially a softened-up crime novel for older kids. The two main protagonists, Karen Mandell and Ann-Marie ( a bit wishy-washy) are childhood friends who meet up again when Karen invites Ann-Marie,who had moved to New York some years before, to spend some time with her back in her old stomping ground in Venice Beach, a suburb of Los Angeles. The more physically-striking of the two, Karen finds herself sought after by two young attractive males, Jerry a seemingly well-balanced guy with great friends, and the other Vince, a leather-clad member of a gang. Karen soon discovers things are not as straightforward as she initially thought, especially after discovering that Jerry already has a girlfriend called Renee who is non-to-pleased about their blossoming friendship, and that Jerry recently lost his brother in unfortunate accident. Karen starts getting threatening messages to stay away from Jerry, then her friend Ann-Marie starts behaving in an odd manner, and suddenly Karen finds herself being questioned about a murder. The plot, even if slightly contrived, is not too obvious, and I think most teenage readers would enjoy this book. The only thing I find about R.L.Stine's characters is that they are not very well developed so it is hard to feel an attachment to any of them, but then again like James Patterson, he is known for his racy page-turning publications.