Aug 1, 2011

Pam's Bitchy BFF Adventure

I have no lead in, let's just get right to it, shall we?

Pony Camp vol. 2
Pam's Trail Riding Adventure
by Susan Saunders

The trail can be a scary place to ride...

Everyone at Pony Camp is looking forward to the trail ride - everyone except Pam.

Pam's terrified because her slow, steady horse is hurt, and she has to ride Dandy - the wildest horse in the stable.

Pam needs help from her best friend, Jessie, but Jessie won't help her. She's mad at Pam for being nice to nasty Lisa Harris.

But on the trail, it's Lisa Harris who needs help - and Pam is the only one who can save her. Will Pam be brave enough to rescue Lisa?

Jeez, this synopsis is even more wrong that the first one was. Let us count the ways...

In this book we get a change from Jessie's POV to Pam Werner's. This is not the relief you might be hoping for, as Jessie is still a ginormous beyotch, but we'll get to that. Pam here is not too thrilled with Pony Camp, but being a weak willed thing, she can't say no to Jessie. So in spite of having nightmares about riding runaway horses, she hauls her ass to camp every day, not telling Jessie that she is, in fact, quite nervous around thousand pound animals, because that would make her a total wimp and she would lose her special title of "Jessie's Bitch." Yep.

Anyway, Pam's horse, Gracie, the sleepy chestnut mare, somehow does herself an injury, and has to rest for two weeks. Her replacement is Dandy, who everyone treats like Horse Jesus or something. He's an Arabian show horse and he's- I quote- "the color of coffee ice cream, with a vanilla mane and tail and a white diamond on his forehead."

Lisa Harris happens to walk by and instantly gets all hot for Dandy, trying to bully her way to being his rider. When she finds out Pam will be riding Dandy, she says the best (and by that I mean worst) line she has in the whole trilogy, "What a total waste of excellent horseflesh!" WTF? Who talks like that?

So after an awkward first lesson on Dandy, Pam comes to find out that her mother has invited Lisa's BFF Sally to spend the night. This apparently is the worst thing ever, because Pam is all upset, Jessie gets pissy at Pam, and Lisa is out to get Pam. Wow. Top it all off with news that the camp is going on their first trail ride, it is officially the worst day of Pam's life.

We get more of Jessie being a bitch for a while, because obviously Pam wants to be BFFs with Sally, and everyone knows you can only be friends with Jessie. It is a full. time. job, people. Then... the sleepover.

Pam and Sally both confess to being afraid of horses, and get along pretty well, until the next morning when they arrive at camp and Sally runs back to Lisa. This is apparently all Jessie needs to forgive Pam for her terrible deeds. At least until Lisa shows up and tells Jessie that Pam is scared of horses, and Jessie's a big meanie face for making her be there. Jessie, what else, gets pissy at Pam and storms off. Lisa then informs Pam that Dandy will runaway with her on the trail.

Pam confesses to her instructor, Diana, that she's afraid of horses, and terrified that Dandy will bolt with her on the trail ride. Diana points out the absurdity of the camp buying a runaway and putting a beginner on him, then points out that Pam has gained a lot of confidence around horses since first starting out. She then teaches Pam about horse body language, which somehow makes Pam feel all better. She even grows a pair and tells Lisa to get out of her face, regaining a tiny amount of approval from Jessie. They make up and it's all beautiful and whatnot.

So what happens to Lisa? You know, the synopsis was all, "Will Pam be brave enough to rescue Lisa?" The answer is no. Not that Pam isn't brave enough, it's just that she herself doesn't rescue Lisa from anything. Lisa's horse lays down to roll in the stream, and Lisa's instructor pulls her off her horse before he rolled over on her. And Pam, Jessie, Maxine, and Peter ride away laughing about it. The end.

Things of note:

Jessie is one of the bitchiest characters I've EVER read, and in horse literature that is saying something. We are talking bitchier than Cindy you guys. The only thing worse is how Pam bends over and takes it.

I'm not sure why Peter exists. He did literally nothing in this book, or any of them really. It's a trilogy that focuses of the three girls, Peter doesn't get his own book, he barely gets any story at all.

Two down, one to go...

1 comment:

Molly said...

The synopsis made me start to headdesk hard because I still haven't forgiven Ann M Martin for constantly having awful riders being put on psycho horses because the lazy plug they usually ride is out of commission and I forget that normal people realize that that isn't actually going to happen, and reading this

"Diana points out the absurdity of the camp buying a runaway and putting a beginner on him"

brought my blood pressure down significantly.

Jessie's a brat, but no one is worse than Cindy. For reals.