After Sweet Valley Confidential was published, the immediate thought was what other great kids’ series would we like to see a Ten Years Later book from? I found myself thinking about the Babysitter’s Club or maybe Nancy Drew. Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants did not top my list. Forever in Blue had felt like a satisfying conclusion to the series and it was such a recent series, but I am definitely not disappointed.
The book picks up just under ten years after we last saw them, and despite the happy ending of book four, their lives have taken a somewhat unexpected turn:
- Carmen is a successful actress engaged to a self-centered jerk
- Bridget is living with Eric but has a fear of commitment
- Lena has isolated herself from the world
- Tibby has moved to Australia with Brian and been MIA for a while
Though the girls have grown apart, a mysterious letter containing plane tickets to Greece sent by Tibby brings them back together again. What follows is a shocking, heartrending, and ultimately uplifting look at four girls who grew up best friends and have learned to contend with life together even when worlds apart.
If you haven’t read the other books, this one probably won’t make all that much sense to you. So much of the events are determined by the past four books. but if you did read and love the series, you will likely love this one. However, don’t expect it to be the same sunny, carefree books the others were. (Sure, they dealt with tough issues, but this is the book that truly tests the girls and confronts them with the harsh realities of life.) Sisterhood Everlasting is much darker, but therefore much more powerful.
Lena and Carmen remain my least favorite characters–their characters seem to have grown the least despite their past experiences–and Bridget continues to be my favorite–I have always been able to relate to her most. Luckily for me, Bridget has a particularly strong and dominant story.
The book was good enough to make me cry (even if not everything is completely realistic). It reminded me why the original books drew me in and left me hoping to get even more from the Sisterhood. It reminded me of Toy Story 3, all the nastalgia but with the heart to back it up.