Monday, February 20, 2017

River Heights #1 Love Times Three and #2 Guilty Secrets

The River Heights series is a spin-off of the Nancy Drew Files series.  Nancy Drew Files #39, The Suspect Next Door, features Nikki Masters, Nancy's next-door neighbor who is accused of murder.  Thanks to Nancy Drew, Nikki is cleared of the charges so that she can star in her own series, River Heights.

Many Nancy Drew fans mistakenly believe that the River Heights books are Nancy Drew books.  The River Heights series was an attempt by Simon and Schuster to use the Nancy Drew name to promote a teen romance series.  The books are not Nancy Drew books.  Nancy Drew only appears in a few of them, and just barely at that.  The River Heights books are written in the style of Sweet Valley High and Merivale Mall, which are teen romance series.

Nikki is extremely wealthy, and her best friends are Lacey and Robin.  Brittany Tate's father works for Nikki's father.  Brittany resents Nikki for that reason and tries to mess up Nikki's life.

I like the teen romance books of the 1980s.  You will find my reviews of this series to be positive, but keep in mind that these books are teen romance books.  They are not Nancy Drew books.  Do not make the mistake of thinking that you will like this series if you like Nancy Drew.  You will only like this series if you like Sweet Valley High and books similar to those.

In River Heights #1, Love Times Three, Nikki Masters is having trouble fitting in at the start of the new school year.  Everyone is staring at her and gossiping about the murder case from over the summer break.  Nikki overcomes that hurdle and then falls for Tim Cooper.  Unfortunately, Brittany has decided that she wants him and schemes to keep Nikki away from him.

Nancy Drew is present in the beginning of the story and absent for the rest of it.  After all, Nancy was just being used by the publisher to make money.

On page 11, we learn that the south wing of River Heights High is "early twenty-first century in style."  Hmm.  This book was published in 1989.  What would "early twenty-first century" be in 1989?  Flying desks?

This genre is always very unrealistic with problems solved way too easily.  Everyone gossips about Nikki, but then Brittany declares in front of students that "stale news is out."  Suddenly, everyone forgets about everything, and Nikki's life is back to normal.  It just takes one comment from one person to cause the entire student body to quit gossiping simultaneously.

On page 80, Brittany threatens her sister with "I swear I'll erase every one of your floppy disks!"

I really enjoyed this book.

In River Heights #2, Guilty Secrets, Nikki gets a new car.  She's on top of the world until her boyfriend, Tim, refuses to get near her car.  He keeps avoiding her, and Nikki fears that their relationship is over.

Nikki and Brittany are on the homecoming committee along with Nancy Drew and several other alumni.  Brittany plans to sabotage the halftime skit in order to make Nikki look bad.  Will she succeed?

Of course it would be too logical for Tim to admit what his problem is or for Nikki to ask him directly.

The homecoming skit planning meeting is too long and is very boring.

Nancy Drew appears several times in brief scenes.

I enjoyed this book but not as much as the first one.

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