Wednesday, January 03, 2007

You Know You Love Me - Cecily von Ziegesar

You Know You Love Me
Gossip Girl #2
Cecily von Ziegesar
Little, Brown and Company

Young Adult (ages 15 and up)

Note: If you haven’t read the first book in the series, this review contains plot spoilers.

Picking up right where GOSSIP GIRL left off, it’s wintertime in Manhattan, and all the students attending exclusive prep schools are concentrating on applying to colleges. Of course, being from wealthy families and privileged backgrounds, they’re expected to go Ivy League. Blair Waldorf, who never accepts second-best is fixated on going to Yale. Really, why even apply anywhere else? In her mind, she’s got it all planned out. She and boyfriend Nate will live together, off campus, and get married four years later. She’s got a surprise coming. More than one, actually. Nate is not at all sure that he’s going to get into Yale after spending a lot of his time lately baked. He’s also not happy about mapping out his entire life at the age of seventeen.

As if there’s not enough stress on her, Blair’s divorced mother is planning her wedding to the very-tacky Cyrus Rose. And she’s asked Serena, Blair’s former best friend, to be a bridesmaid. And Blair is competing with Serena in the school’s student film competition. With all of this, and Nate acting decidedly weird (he’s seeing someone, but Blair has no clue) the only bright spot is her Yale interview. Her new, hippie, vegan, stepbrother volunteers to drive her there when Nate flakes. And, to her horror, and after meticulous preparation, Blair’s performance in her interview is pretty much freakshow-worthy. Looks like it might be time to make some different plans. Or just throw one hell of a party.

This second book in the series builds very well on the events from the first. Gossip Girl, the anonymous website that tracks the actions of all the characters is still going strong. The title is taken from GG’s sign-off, and it’s true. To read her is to love her. In a twisted kind of way. Anyone and everyone who has ever gone through the horror of college application time will appreciate the pressures here. The difference is, most of us don’t get to shop our troubles away at Barney’s or drink until we pass out in some chic bar or hotel suite. That might not be a bad thing. This series is completely addictive. Even when you don’t much like some of the characters, you must know what happens next.

Rating: 8
September 2002 (also available in 3-volume boxed set)
ISBN# 0-316-91148-8 (trade paperback)


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