“Are Elizabeth and Todd headed for disaster?”
Elizabeth and Todd are the perfect couple. They love each other intensely, they passionately want each other to succeed, and each one loathes the thought of disappointing the other. If you ignore the pesky facts that Todd despises his girlfriend’s twin sister and Elizabeth loses her cool at the mere presence of another girl in Todd’s line of sight, you have yourself a relationship so mature that its occurrence between two high-schoolers is laughable. But I am willing to accept it, because I am a hopeless romantic type, and I need a solid, passionate, trusting relationship in my teen melodramas to keep me from tearing my hair out.
What I’m trying to say is, I am obsessed with Todd and Elizabeth.
For me, this has some historical precedence. I was always rooting for Dawson and Joey, and I stopped watching 90210 when Dylan and Brenda broke up (I was way too young to be watching that show! But no one could stop me…), and I didn’t think it was that weird that Cory and Topanga got married in college. Even my Barbie doll story line had a solid, romantic couple at its core – Courtney and Kevin (What? You’re telling me your Barbies didn’t have a story line?). I think this penchant for committed romances is what allowed me to get caught up in Book 6, Dangerous Love. It’s all about Todd and Elizabeth, and we finally see Elizabeth facing a somewhat believable dilemma.
Todd has saved up for quite sometime to buy the motorcycle of his dreams, but Elizabeth has trouble sharing his excitement, as her parents forbade her and Jess from riding on motorcycles long ago, after a cousin was killed in an accident. Elizabeth, curiously enough, doesn’t bother discussing the matter with her parents. But she also keeps this information from Todd for quite some time, stupidly making excuses not to ride. It’s clear that she doesn’t want to hurt his feelings. He bought her a cute crash helmet! Come on!
Of course, eventually Elizabeth does take a ride, egged on by – what? Can you guess? – that’s right, Fear of Losing Him. When other girls start getting rides from Todd while Liz is stuck driving the Fiat home alone, Liz gradually cracks, breaking the rules in the name of love or jealousy (and also because Jessica has left her at the dance without a ride. Oops.). Her punishment is swift and terrible: she ends up in a coma. That’s right, upon making her first ever mistake, Liz is in an ironic car accident with the very jerk Todd had just agreed to sell his bike to. It’s all just too much.
Still not enough, however, for our author. This book ends with the most asinine cliffhanger in history: Will Elizabeth live or die?? Tune in next time to find out!
(Looking for the 2018 podcast episode about this book? Click here to motor at high speed into a new era.)