This Is The 10th Book In This Series!
Dissecting The Cover:
Typical PLL cover. Real girl on the back, doll version made to look like the real girl on the front.
It's gimmicky, I guess, but this particular gimmick seems to work on me cos I love these covers!
They're bold, they're sassy and they make me slightly nostalgic for my old Barbies.
Spencer, Hanna, Emily and Aria can't seem to stop it with the secret-keeping. Which is bad for them but good for the ever mysterious A. That bitch is still in business, stalking and toying with the girls and generally wreaking havoc on their lives.
A continues to torment them with the terrible truth about what happened in Jamaica. As well as a few other secrets.
Spencer did a bad, bad thing over the summer. And she feels super guilty about it. Not guilty enough to confess though. See, she needs to keep a squeaky clean record to get into Princeton. Which is tough since she went all Jessica-Spano-on-caffeine-pills-singing-"I'm So Excited"- to-a-bewildered-Zack-Morris and someone got hurt.
Now Spence is trying to put it behind her and focus on her part in the school's production of Macbeth. But it seems the role of Lady M is hitting a little too close to home what with all that Out, damned spotting.
Aria has the misfortune of being paired with her arch nemesis and possible boyfriend thief, Klaudia, for an art history project. Which Klaudia is all about leaving for Aria to deal with.
But things start looking up when Aria reconnects with her old flame/English teacher, Ezra Fitz. And he's written a novel! About their inappropriate relationship! And it's called See Me After Class! Eww!
Emily's found a really sweet girl who reminds her of Ali. (Cos that worked out so well for ya the first time, sweetie?) But she finds out that Kay has a secret of her own. Oh and there's the slight possibility that Kay might be A!
Hanna's all about helping her dad with his campaign..... until she meets a super hot guy named Liam! So of course she gets all whipped up in a clandestine relationship with him. And of course Liam isn't being 100% honest with her.
It seems the more things change, the more they stay the same in Rosewood.
Can't anyone just tell the truth?
Here's What I Think:
I was a little disappointed in this book because to me it seemed like none of the storylines from Twisted were picked up in Ruthless.
In fact, the book starts out with Spencer in trouble with the police, worrying that a girl named Kelsey might rat her out. And I was like "wait a second. who's Kelsey? should I know her? was she in Twisted? why is Spencer in jail? what's she so concerned about being ratted out for? I'm sooooooo confused!"
Then I realized that most of what happened in the previous book was pretty much moot now. Ruthless is basically a whole new story.
True, Klaudia is still a thorn in Aria's side, trying to ruin her relationship with Noel Kahn. But not with as much gusto as before. Aria's mainly fangirling about having Mr. Fitz back in her life. Even though he comes off as an insecure d-bag.
And Hanna's still helping her dad with his Senate campaign. But early on in the book she comes clean about the whole Patrick Thing, how he blackmailed her with racy pictures and she had to steal money from petty cash to pay him off and someone else got fired because of it. Hanna's dad is actually pretty understanding about it but then we never hear about the situation again. Instead, Hanna gets all twitterpated over a guy she just met.
Emily and Spencer have completely new secrets this time around.
Chloe Roland and her skeevy father that hit on Emily aren't really mentioned in Ruthless.
Instead of worrying with that shizz, Emily lets her hair down when her sister Beth comes to town for like four chapters. I guess her sister's visit was just supposed to set up Emily meeting a girl named Kay at a party she attends with the aforementioned sister because from that point on Beth's back in Arizona and Emily is all about her new girlfriend.
Spencer's story is the most dramatic shift. Her mom and Mr. Pennythistle's relationship is no longer a topic and her soon-to-be stepbrother Zach who was sent to military school because of his homosexual tendencies is pretty much forgotten.
In Ruthless, Spencer is in some deep doo doo. Like trouble-with-the-law, betrayed-a-friend doo doo.
And while it's fun to read about all the secrets and lies, I would have preferred if the storylines were more cohesive. Maybe things will come back together in Stunning (coming to a bookstore near you June 5th.)
So it seems like each girl had a little somethin' somethin' going on in this book. But none of the moments were particularly swoontastic. Or memorable.
I was kinda rooting for Spencer and Beau. There were a few does-he-like-her-or-not moments. I thought Beau was a good match for Spencer. They could have benefited from Sebastian the crab paddling up in his rowboat though.
Sara Shepard is pretty much the queen of red herrings. Just when you think she's gonna zig, she surprises you by bustin' out a zag. I like that about this series. Even though we're 10 stories in, it's never short on twists and turns.
If You Liked That, Try This:
The Lying Game by Sara Shepard.
Private by Kate Brian.
The Scale of Judgment Says:
...... 3 and a half.
The little liars secrets are getting a little stale.