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The Cheater by R.L. Stine: A Book Review... & a Rant.




Rating 3/5


After finishing this book, I'm convinced R.L. had this ghostwritten because what the fuck? (excuse my language)


I gotta be honest, men over 40 should never write anything about teenagers ever. I'm entertained but also angry that I ever liked these books as a kid. I know that these books were written nearly 20-30 years ago, but I just can't excuse how bad RL seems to be at writing teenage characters. And this is something I've noticed with other males over a certain age who write young characters. Especially female teens.


This book was horribly written for some strange reason. (typos and all, which I never recall from reading anything by R.L. Stine as a kid. But I also wasn't a writer back then so there's that.) What makes me upset is that a self-published author would be ripped to shreds for this. But someone who has been writing award-winning books for decades gets this past a publisher? Make it make sense.


Anyway, on to the review. Carter Phillips is a teenage girl who sucks at math. If she doesn't score well on a test, her father (Who is a judge) will be pissed and she might not get into Princeton. So this bad boy Adam, offers to take it for her in exchange for a date. He ends up blackmailing her and things get crazy for Carter.


Carter pissed me off in this story. Actually, all the characters were pretty shitty except Jill, her best friend and Dan, her boyfriend. Her father was an asshole, her mother was pointless and under-developed. She didn't even have a name. just 'Mrs. Phillips." Weird. Adam, the guy blackmailing her was a creepy rapist and that scene at the bar was gross. I'm not sure why RL has this fetish for sexual assault in his Fear Street stories, which is why once again, why men should stick to writing books that don't involve teenagers.


I also didn't understand why Sheila (Adam's girlfriend) was necessary. She was basically used as your typical Fear Street fake out psycho. One minute she's obsessed and jealous, yet when something big happens to Adam, all she cares about is money? Carter also waited ENTIRELY too long to tell her father about everything. There were too many inconsistencies and plot holes galore. Also, a pretty messed up ending involving Dan, that completely changes the tone of the story. Carter being afraid of her father & him finding out the truth was one of the conflicts that she faced, yet it was glossed over towards the end. Her fear of him was the main reason she made so many stupid choices, so what was the point of it all?


*Sigh* I didn't hate this book, but I didn't love it either. Nonetheless, I was still entertained and will most likely spend the rest of my quarantine hate-reading the rest of this series. LOL


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