Title: Wicked (Pretty Little Liars #5)
Author: Sara Shepard
Published: June 2009 by HarperTeen
My Rating: 3 stars
Tags: YA | Girls | Romance | Mystery | Series (Book Five)
Includes: Profanity, Sexual Content
First Lines: Emily Fields leaned back on the chestnut brown leather couch, picking at the chlorine-dried skin around her thumb. Her old best friends, Aria Montgomery, Spencer Hastings, and Hanna Marin, sat next to her, sipping Godiva hot chocolate from striped ceramic mugs.
*This review contains spoilers for those of you that haven't read the first, second, third, and fourth books in the Pretty Little Liars series.*
This next book in the adored Pretty Little Liars series follows up right where the fourth one ended. The identity of A has been revealed and Ali's killer is going to prison. Now the girls can continue their lives and disguise their secrets in peace right? Wrong. Suddenly, there's another A out there - sending even more frightening emails and texts to the girls all over again. Oh, and Ali's killer disappeared right before his hearing. Emily is struggling with which team to play for; she still has buried feelings for Maya, so why is she suddenly so interested in a new boy? Spencer is busy trying to put the pieces together about a secret that's been running in her family without her knowing. Hanna is determined to be the most popular girl at school again, even if that means hanging with the wrong crowd. And finally, Aria is crushing on a man...her mom's new boyfriend that is.
For some reason, this book disappointed me which was a shock because I've loved the previous four books. I felt like there wasn't enough plot substance in this one and it definitely lacked the normal suspense that I look forward to. There was no huge climax near the end either, which was a let-down. This series was supposed to end at book four, so I just felt like this one was a bit awkward and forced. It's strange - just in my last review for the fourth book, Unbelievable, I explained how "I began seeing the four girls in a new perspective. They didn't seem as stuck up and conceited than before, and I'm growing to really understand them." However, after this book, I take that back. Hanna was like an entirely new person and I wouldn't ever dare to befriend her because of just how heartless and selfish she can be at times! It seems each time I finally start to like the girls, something always pulls me away. It's hard to enjoy a book when you turn your nose up at the main characters.
From page 264
Kate gave Hanna a wide, smirking smile, Hanna's binging secret probably on the tip of her tongue. Hanna felt like she was on a roller coaster that was slowly climbing to the top of a hill. Any minute now, it would spill down the other side, and she'd lose her stomach...and her reputation.
This book was calmer than the others. I read it at a much slower pace than I did with the previous novels, not as interested I guess. I'm not sure where the series is leading to, now that I'm completely confused about the whole A situation. The new A seems to be an exact replica of the old A...but Mona is dead so how is that possible? My brain is just a twisted mess after this novel. There was also a repeated memory of Ali that was mentioned in practically every chapter. Obviously it's important to the story, but after a while it got really frustrating reading about the same exact memory from each girl's perspective.
Personally, Aria has always been my favorite character to read about, seems the most mature, and is the nicest of the bunch. I can't wait to see how her story is going to progress and how she'll fix the mess she's gotten into. I don't mean to be highlighting just the negative aspects of this certain novel, because as a whole this is still an amazing series that I've grown to love. It's a guilty pleasure of mine and I'll definitely be starting the next installment as soon as possible. Though this was my least favorite so far, hopefully the rest will be much more exciting! I have hope in Sara Shepard.
Cover Thoughts: Love it! The whole series has an ongoing theme with their covers; each one represents one of the girls as a barbie doll. On the back, it shows them as a human, but they look exactly the same. I think this is such an original idea! Plus, the next four books have changed a little bit - and I like them even more. The zoom-in and text placement is really eye-catching.