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on January 6, 2009
Ian Thomas is in jail awaiting trial and the girls are able to relax and return to their lives. Or can they??? Just when the reader thought that the mystery of A has been solved at the end of UNBELIEVABLE, more bizarre events await the girls of Rosewood.

Hanna, Spencer, Emily, and Aria slowly try to settle back into their normal lives. Hanna is working through the trauma of learning that her best friend tried to kill her. She tries to live with her soon-to-be step-sister, Kate, and build up new friendships at school. Spencer is dealing with the cold shoulder she is receiving from her family. And through her grandmother's will, Spencer has just learned that she might be adopted. Aria has ventured to an art exhibit on her own, only to learn that the guy she was maybe flirting with was the artist himself. And finally Emily has met a boy. A boy that sends tingles through her.

The four girls still meet to discuss their grief and pull themselves together for the trial that is about to begin. But when Ian is released on bail to attend to his dying mother, the mysterious text messages start again.

Each girl receives messages that are more haunting than the ones before Ian was arrested. Now, the sender seems to be stalking them. The messages are sent at the most inopportune times, and some even come with photos attached; photos that were taken mere moments before the text arrived.

As the trial looms nearer, the girls are again thrust together trying to piece together the life that was Alison DiLaurentis. In WICKED, the reader gets a glimpse of the past and how the five girls initially became friends. The story hints at the Time Capsule and the flag pieces that bring the girls together.

In WICKED, Ms. Shepard brings the reader even deeper into the intrigue that is Rosewood. Told in alternating voices by each of the girls, the pieces of the puzzle slowly start to come together.

The wonderful thing about the PRETTY LITTLE LIARS series is that Ms. Shepard is able to lead the reader down one path, only to leave the ending wide open and wandering off in a different direction. With the shocking ending of WICKED, the reader will be waiting anxiously for the next installment, KILLER, due out in June 2009.

Reviewed by: Jaglvr
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on September 11, 2011
Publisher: Harperteen
Source: Personal Copy
Pages: 320

Sara Shepard still has me hooked. Wicked is the fifth book in the series, and another captivating read. The suspense is killing me! Alison DiLaurentis held her friends together, and since her death they are finding out more and more about her, alarming secrets, and questionable behavior. The girls are teetering between their hurt that Alison could have been so manipulating, and their guilt of not remaining loyal to a friend that is no longer living. Aria, Spencer, Hannah and Emily are still grieving over the death of Alison, each of the girls are dealing with their issues individually. While their friendships have improved they are still not as close as they once were, they still questions what they should talk to each other about and are hesitant to speak to each other. When the messages return signed 'A' they girls initially believe that these are coming from a copy cat, Mona fell off a cliff and Ian Thomas believed to be Alison's killer has been sent to jail. Spencer is dealing with the fallout from her actions in the previous book, and her parents have distanced themselves. Spencer is feeling alone and embarrassed. Aria has moved on from Ezra, but her attraction to her mom's boyfriend may cause some issues. Emily is still coming to terms with her sexuality and Hanna is questioning her relationship with Lucas. The girls fear escalated when the messages become more personal and the threats more intimidating.
I really enjoy this series. I usually take a break between each book which is something that I tend to do with every series. I'm surprised that it is book five and I haven't lost interest, I'm actually more interested in the series. I would really like to try out Sara Shepards new series. I did watch some episodes of the first season, but I stopped afraid that it would ruin the books. I would like to go back and watch because I think I'm far enough into the books now. My own complaint is that the show portrays the girls as best friends, and really they have distanced themselves quite a bit. 'A' is the only think that keeps them communicating, as well as their forced therapy sessions. I highly recommend this series, you won't regret it. You might be a little discouraged because there are so many books, but they read really quick. Pretty Little Liars is one of my favorite YA book series.
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This review is from: Pretty Little Liars #5: Wicked (Paperback)
Hang on to your hats and glasses because you are going to take a VERY bumpy ride through Rosewood, Pennsylvania on Philadephia's Main Line!

Alison DiLaurentis, 13, was a bright leader of a girls' clique. The members of said clique were more like satellites than actual friends as Alison's approval tended to give her peers a social leg up. She has been discovered murdered some 4 years after the summer she completed 7th grade in Rosewood Day, a private school on Philadephia's Main Line. These girls drop designer names the way some folks drop names when they want to impress others.

Spencer Hastings, along with the other satellites discovers she has good reason to want to dim the sun around which she revolves. She sputters at the drop of a designer hat. In an earlier installment, readers learn that she has had a history of blackouts. Her older sister, Melissa, favored to the point of excess and indulgence treats her like dog droppings. To make matters worse, the Hastings have ostracized Spencer for plagiarizing her sister's paper and almost accepting the Golden Orchid Award even after Spencer came clean and said she was going to turn herself in. They told her to accept the award so as not to tarnish the family's pristine reputation, but once she confessed they continued to treat her like dirt. They have a history of ostracizing her, as readers of the earlier installments well know. They wouldn't even invite her to eat dinner with them nor allow her to help in planning a fund raiser for her own school which was being held in her own home! To make matters worse, her grandmother does not include her in the will. The old bag stipulated that only "natural born grandchildren" stood to inherit from her vast fortune. That raises the question - is Spencer adopted or is the old bag just as unloving as her son and daughter-in-law? Remember - Spencer did describe her as not being kid friendly in an early volume.

Aria Montgomery had been having an affair with her English teacher, Ezra Fitz. Her theme song is Van Halen's "Hot For Teacher." Back in town after a 3-year stay in Iceland, Aria reluctantly re-enters Rosewood Day School and the consequences of her father's infidelity. Aria's mother re-admits her into the house upon learning Aria knew about the affair even before the family left for Iceland. Aria, who has always had a thing for older men accepts her mother's invitation to an art show where she meets an attractive older man who turns out to be one of the artists. Some interesting plot twists later, Aria is literally fighting him off. He could be a statutory rapist. Sadly, Aria feels she cannot blow the whistle on him as she fears being ousted from the house once again. She carries her Icelandic yak-fur bag like Linus does his security blanket. Her brother Mike, some 2-years younger thinks the artist is the greatest thing since his on-going passion, lacrosse. He remains on the fence post regarding familial alliances.

Emily Fields, a reknowned swimmer has finally become open about her sexual orientation. She has broken up with her partner, Maya, who is now living in the DeLaurentis house. Her irate parents shipped her off to her unloving aunt and uncle in Iowa in an early installment. Luckily, she meets a very kind boy named Isaac at a church social and in time enjoys a girlfriend-boyfriend relationship with Isaac. She also discovers her own bisexuality at this time.

Hanna - a former fat girl now a bulimic femme fatale has survived a lot. In an earlier installment, she was run over by a car; discovered what "fake friending" means and learns that popularity is as shifting as the shadows that stalk her and the other 3 girls. Her ulta-kind (or to use a word that crops up a lot in this book, "uber") boyfriend, Lucas stands by her side until she makes an accusation with devastating repercussions. Her own father all but ousts her from the family as well and his favoritism towards his stepdaughter to be, Kate is sickening. Kate is sneaky and conniving and Hanna has to be on high alert around her at all times.

Someone else is making the girls remain on high alert. The mysterious A who has been shadowing them ever since Alison's death is back in town and A is adept at finding out the girls' darkest secrets and deepest fears. A sends them mysterious text messages and e-mails and another casualty falls into this story as well. Hang on to your hats and glasses - once you enter Rosewood, you can't leave until you find out the fate of the Pretty Little Liars and the mysterious A! Rosewood, Pennsylvania is like the Hotel California of Eagles' fame - you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave. In fact, that 1976 Eagles' classic could be the theme song for this outwardly idyllic Main Line town.
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on August 26, 2014
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