Second Helpings (Jessica Darling #2)

 
5.0
 
5.0 (16)
2415 0
Second Helpings (Jessica Darling #2)
Age Range
14+
Release Date
April 22, 2003
ISBN
0609807919
Buy This Book
      
“Knowing that I’ve just done something that will take decades off my parents’ lives with worry, you’ll excuse me for not getting into the fa-la-la-la-la Yuletide spirit this year. . . . The only difference between Christmas 2001 and Christmas 2000 is that I don’t have a visit from Hope to look forward to. And Bethany has already packed on some major fetal flab. Oh, and now Gladdie doesn’t need to ask a bizillion questions about my boyfriend, because she’s already gotten the dirt from you know who.”

Jessica Darling is up in arms again in this much-anticipated, hilarious sequel to Sloppy Firsts. This time, the hyperobservant, angst-ridden teenager is going through the social and emotional ordeal of her senior year at Pineville High. Not only does the mysterious and oh-so-compelling Marcus Flutie continue to distract Jessica, but her best friend, Hope, still lives in another state, and she can’t seem to escape the clutches of the Clueless Crew, her annoying so-called friends. To top it off, Jessica’s parents won’t get off her butt about choosing a college, and her sister Bethany’s pregnancy is causing a big stir in the Darling household.

With keen intelligence, sardonic wit, and ingenious comedic timing, Megan McCafferty again re-creates the tumultuous world of today’s fast-moving and sophisticated teens. Fans of Sloppy Firsts will be reunited with their favorite characters and also introduced to the fresh new faces that have entered Jess’s life, including the hot creative writing teacher at her summer college prep program and her feisty, tell-it-like-it-is grandmother Gladdie. But most of all, readers will finally have the answers to all of their burgeoning questions, and then some: Will Jessica crack under the pressure of senioritis? Will her unresolved feelings for Marcus wreak havoc on her love life? Will Hope ever come back to Pineville? Fall in love with saucy, irreverent Jessica all over again in this wonderful sequel to a book that critics and readers alike hailed as the best high school novel in years.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

There's a Reason Everyone Loves This Series
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
What I Loved:
I will do my best to refrain my flailing and fangirling in this review, but it's going to be really difficult, because this series gives me so many feels. SO. MANY. FEELS. Seriously, if you like contemporaries at all and are not easily offended, then you really need to read the Jessica Darling series posthaste. Second Helpings follows Jessica through her senior year of high school, and had me even more on the edge of my seat than the first one.

As I mentioned in my review for Sloppy Firsts, I love Jessica. She is so well-characterized that I feel like I know her up and down. I can tell you her strengths, her weaknesses, and how she fails to see herself properly, as most people do in high school. Jessica grows up a lot in this book, learning to go for what she really wants and to see herself more objectively. In Sloppy Firsts, Jessica did a lot of things to please others, but now she's focused on herself.

One thing (out of many) that I love about this series is that it's so obvious that Jessica doesn't know what she wants. Though, from my perspective, I can tell the right choice from the wrong one, I know Jessica so well that I understand when she missteps. She works out her difficulties in her journal, rehashing them over and over again, trying to process her feelings, particularly about boys. Relationships are confusing, and it can be really difficult to tell how you actually feel about someone, especially if they're also your friend. McCafferty shows that all teen relationships don't last forever, and that romance isn't easy or found at first sight.

In my previous review, I mentioned that I was still a bit unsure about Marcus Flutie. Let the record show that I am no longer unsure. Before I got too far into Second Helpings, I was shipping Jessica and Marcus something fierce. Basically, in book one, he didn't really overcome his sketchy past enough to be someone I could really endorse as a hero, but, by now, he's made good, now using his talents for good rather than substance abuse. He and Jessica have such a strong mental connection, and chemistry like whoa. Also, it's hilarious how, for two forthright, honest people, they have a huge amount of trouble admitting their feelings for one another.

What Left Me Wanting More:
Though I've decided not to rate down for this because I just loved this book so much, this edition had a surprising number of typos. Also, that ending was mean. Just mean. I am very afraid that I will not like the next book, mostly because I have no idea what will happen and I have nerves just thinking about all the bad, but realistic, decisions I will need to watch Jessica make. MAKE GOOD CHOICES, JESSICA.

The Final Verdict:
You should probably be reading this series. Do it. So you can flail with me. Please?
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

User reviews

16 reviews

 
(14)
 
(2)
3 stars
 
(0)
2 stars
 
(0)
1 star
 
(0)
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
4.9  (16)
Characters 
 
5.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
5.0  (1)
Already have an account? or Create an account
View all reviews View most helpful
Lightyears ahead of the first installment
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
By and large, Second Helpings was a massive improvement over Sloppy Firsts. Where in the first book I found Jessica Darling to be needlessly rude and judgmental, in this sequel I was instead charmed by her ridiculous sense of humor and pleased by her obvious character growth from her sophomore year of high school. I think really, that this series is the kind one needs to see to the end, since otherwise the reader will miss out on the full effect.

Second Helpings dealt with Jessica’s senior year—college applications, figuring out what she really wanted to to with her life, and figuring out how to tell her parents that she didn’t exactly want to do what they wanted. Thrown into the mix is her awkward relationship with reformed druggie Marcus Flutie. Overall this was a book I felt much more strongly attached to.

From the very first scene to the last, I was completely in love with this book. Though it’s wasn’t instantaneous, I now count myself as one of Megan McCafferty’s (many) fans.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Strong Followup to Sloppy Firsts
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Sara

 From Publishers Weekly: Every day, I wait for that doomsday shoe to drop on my head and crush my spirit," laments New Jersey high schooler Jessica Darling. This hilarious, candid sequel to Sloppy Firsts opens the summer before Jessica's senior year of high school, when the precocious misfit is at a New Jersey academic enrichment camp whose competitive enrollment is belied by its acronym-SPECIAL. There, she meets Prof. Samuel MacDougall, a handsome writing teacher with "three novels, two works of nonfiction and one hot piece of ass to his name," who challenges Jessica to imagine the world outside of her native suburbia. She also runs into her former "crush-to-end-all-crushes" Paul Parlipiano (he's gay, of course), who introduces her to Columbia University-which she decides she must attend. Come September, Jessica works on her college applications, dearly misses her best friend, Hope, who has moved to Tennessee, and spends much of her time trying not to think about bad boy Marcus Flutie, who broke her heart last winter when he confessed that he only asked her out as an experiment. As her senior year progresses, Jessica starts dating Len Levy, her rival for class valedictorian, and becomes the subject of the school's new anonymous gossip rag. The material is typical teen fare, but Jessica is a captivating, intelligent, acidly funny-but always believably adolescent-narrator who is unsparing in her sketches of Pineville High "society" yet touchingly alive to her own vulnerabilities.

Favorite characters, quotes/lines: Jessica: she was just as sassy as ever though I didnt always really like the choices she made, it was important that she made them; Marcus: I was excited that he had a bigger part in Jessicas life and that we learned more about him. In Sloppy Firsts Jessica didnt learn near as much out about him as he did about her; Bridget: I liked the new Bridget - and her new boyfriend!

When I finished this book I felt: I think I liked this book more than Sloppy Firsts because I felt like I knew Jess better she was an old friend instead of an acquaintance. Jessica was closer to my age in this book too and I could relate to her even more than before. Yay!! for Marcus! Definitely one of my favorite guy characters of all time!! Im excited to read Charmed Thirds next.

Other books to read by this author: see past post

I would recommend this book to: teens and their moms!
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Loved it
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by lia

I loved this book more then the first one. On this book Jessica Darling is going through the social and emotional ordeal of her senior year at Pineville High. Not only does the mysterious and oh-so-compelling Marcus Flutie continue to distract Jessica, but her best friend, Hope, still lives in another state, and she cant seem to escape the clutches of the Clueless Crew. To top it off, Jessicas parents wont get off her butt about choosing a college and her sister Bethanys pregnancy is causing a big stir in the Darling household.

She is having a lot of stress with parents and stuff but i loved her relatitonship with Marcus. I loved the book and Marcus as well.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 2 0
Still honestly straighfoward
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Natalie

The sequel to Sloppy Firsts takes place during Jessica Darling's senior year of high school. She spends part of her summer at writing camp trying not to think of Marcus Flutie, an ex druggie turned genius, who broke her heart last school year. She is learning not to htink about Marcus by dating Len Levy, geeky genius turned rockstar hott, applying to colleges, and learning to deal with yet another school year without her best friend Hope. The novel takes the form of Jessica's diary, so we are privy to her innermost thoughts--many of which concern Marcus--an obsession that has followed her around since we last saw Jessica in Sloppy Firsts. Jessica is a great narrator--funny, sarcastic, poignant, heartbreaking, and even at times infuriating. She is honest about everything which makes you laugh out loud!
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Second helpings. YAY
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by bria

OOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMMMMGGGGGGGGGG. i love this book. It was WAY better then the frist, and the first book was great. the book made me love marcus even more, even if jessica starts dating len, she belongs with marcus. i love the fact that jessicas crush to end all crushes,paul, turns out to be not quite what she expected. I still feel that the jessica darling novels are for the older teenagers because of the great use of confusing vocabulary. I suggest every teenage girl read this book. its very good novel.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Jessica's Back and Better Than Ever!
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Stephanie

WARNING: you might not want to read this if you haven't read the first book.

Oh well. Suit yourself.

The year 2000 ended on a mixed note for Jessica. She got her period back and renewed her long-distance friendship with best friend Hope, sure, but she lost her close friendship with Marcus Flutie, the boy who broke her heart. Picking up in the summer before her senior year, Jessica attends a summer writing program with stereotypically goth/emo writers and decides to attend Columbia University. However, her parents won't let her go anywhere near the Big Apple, and September 11 also affects her decision.

Meanwhile, Jessica's trying to be a good girlfriend to Len Levy, her rival for valedictorian and also Marcus Flutie's best friend. Which means that He Whose Name Shall Not Be Mentioned is around. A lot. And still sending mixed messages. On top of that, Marcus works at the "old fogues" home where Jessica's grandmother, the spirited and beloved Gladdie, lives. Will Jessica be able to experience some semblance of a happy ending to her high school years?

As with the previous book in the series, SECOND HELPINGS is a deliciously funny account of high school. Adults will be glad they don't have to go through the ordeal again, while high schoolers will want Jessica as their best friend. Megan McCafferty's books are well on their way to immortalization.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Thursday...
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Val

Well, firstly I like Leah whom I happen to be friends with read second helpings instead of reading sloppy firsts but I regret it as well because you find out alot in te seocond book and its one of those novels where if I had to read sloppy firsts I'd have to read second helpings because it would leave me with a bitter feeling because lets just say sloppy firsts doesn't end how everyone wants it too. There the third book coming out called Charming thirds so look out for that and those who don't know about second helpins well,it's the story of a senior named Jessica Darling who is trying to get over the shock of having the popular, really handsome supposed druggie who it turns out THIS IS A SPOILER SKIP TO AVOID READING........



in the first book sloppy firsts had ben bet to take out the smart kid in school. But, she's not like dorky or anyhting and yeah he finally tells her just when there about to ummm... well yea and she gets upset. She goes to school and has to dealw ith him but she finds she can't control herself around him and throughout the novel realizes theres more to Marcus than meets the eye!
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
I'm ready for my third helping please!!!
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Leah



I didn't read Sloppy Firsts, but i stumbed upon this book and decided to read it. Now I wish i had read sloppy firsts. This book deals with the ever present problem of swallowing your pride and just admiting that you still love this person, or keeping your dignity and never speak to them again. Jessica Darling is a senior in high school and deals with the troubles and turbulations of hating someone you love, what college to go to and getting your dad off you're back.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
a great second
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by sara

THis book was good except for one thing.I didn't like that there was so much bad language and sex references.Other than that it was a great story of the typical high school just like the first one.I don't think you could ask for a better sequel.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
A first-rate sequel!
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by LJK

In this sequel to Sloppy Firsts, Megan McCafferty brings back Jessica Darling and all of friends (and not-friends) for their last year at Pineville High. Jessica's best friend, Hope, is still far away, so Jessica must negotiate college applications, the end of her running career, her sister's pregnancy, and, oh yeah, Marcus Flutie, with only her "like, best friend" Bridget to guide her. This book is hilarious, and sensitive, and moving, and just plain terrific. I don't know how I will survive the wait until the release of Charmed Thirds in 2006.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
View all user reviews
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Breathless
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
From Jennifer Niven, the #1 New York Times bestselling author...
Music for Tigers
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
Shipped halfway around the world to spend the summer...
Skyhunter (Skyhunter, #1)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A broken world. An overwhelming evil. ...
Kingdom of Ice and Bone (The Frozen Sun Saga, #2)
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Lira and Reyker have lost everything. Including each other....
Sword of the Seven Sins
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Eva Marteinn never wanted to be a killer. Raised...
Things That Should Stay Buried
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Some destinies are written in the stars. Others must...
How It All Blew Up
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda goes to Italy...
Horrid
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
From the author of You Must Not Miss comes...
Tsalix Silverthorn and the Scepter of Destiny
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The latest phenomenal work from New York Times Bestselling author...
The Adventures of Bubba Jones (#4): Time Traveling Through Grand Canyon National Park
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
In the fourth book of this award-winning national park series,...
The Companion
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
The other orphans say Margot is lucky. Lucky to...
Sanctuary
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
It's 2032, and in this near-future America, all citizens...
Teen Titans: Beast Boy
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Author Kami Garcia (Beautiful Creatures) and artist Gabriel Picolo,...
The Magic Misfits: The Fourth Suit (The Magic Misfits, #4)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Misfits must work together to fend off mysterious attacks...
Duck and Penguin Do Not Like Sleepovers
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A hilarious bedtime romp tackles the thrills and anxieties of...
Furia
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
A powerful, #ownvoices contemporary YA for fans of The...

Latest Member Reviews

The Magic Misfits: The Fourth Suit (The Magic Misfits, #4)
 
5.0
"THE FOURTH SUIT is a fantastically magical finale. Ridley begins with a inventor's fair which she is entering with the..."
Duck and Penguin Do Not Like Sleepovers
 
4.0
"DUCK AND PENGUIN DO NOT LIKE SLEEPOVERS is an overall cute book about two stuffed animals whose owners are BFFs..."
Fussy Flamingo
 
4.5
"FUSSY FLAMINGO is an adorable fictional tale about a flamingo named Lola that doesn't want to eat shrimp. Instead, her..."
Give It! (Moneybunny Books)
 
4.0
"GIVE IT! introduces the simple concept of charity as well as being thoughtful about money purchases. Chummy and his Gran..."
Little Snowflake
 
5.0
"LITTLE SNOWFLAKE is a delightful story that explains the water cycle through the eyes of a small snowflake. Tiny drops..."
Room on the Broom Push-Pull-Slide
 
5.0
"ROOM ON THE BROOM PUSH-PULL-SLIDE is a delightfully interactive board book sure to enchant toddlers and preschoolers. A witch is..."
Stanley's Fire Engine
 
5.0
"STANLEY'S FIRE ENGINE is an adorable picture book that follows a day in the life of Stanley the Firefighter. Stanley..."
Shelly Struggles to Shine (The Derby Daredevils, #2)
 
4.5
"SHELLY STRUGGLES TO SHINE is a great middle grade read that follows the struggle of individuality and feeling like you..."
Thanks a Ton! (A Hello!Lucky Book)
 
5.0
"THANKS A TON! is filled to the brim with bright colors, rhymes, animals, and gratitude. While an elephant has a..."
Wild Week
 
4.0
"WILD WEEK is a cute board book that features an animal on each day of the week, doing something in..."
Peppermint Post
 
5.0
"PEPPERMINT POST is an adorable new story about Christmas and Santa. The Peppermint Post is the busiest post office in..."
Stolen from the Studio (Case Closed, #2)
 
4.0
"STOLEN FROM THE STUDIO is a fun middle grade mystery with a choose-your-own-adventure plot. Carlos travels with his mother, a..."
The Wizenard Series: Season One
 
4.0
"THE WIZENARD SERIES: SEASON ONE is written by Wesley King and created by Kobe Bryant. The MG fantasy follows Reggie,..."
The Triumphant Tale of Pippa North
 
4.0
"THE TRIUMPHANT TALE OF PIPPA NORTH combines magic and humor in a middle grade fantasy full of charm. Pippa is..."
TURBO Racers: Escape Velocity
 
4.0
"TURBO RACERS: ESCAPE VELOCITY is a fast-paced, high-stakes adventure. Mace Blazer is a TURBOnaut, a high-speed vehicle racer. He recently..."
Bread Lab!
 
4.0
"BREAD LAB! is a cute picture book that walks through the steps of making sourdough bread through the eyes of..."
A Thousand No's
 
3.5
"A THOUSAND NO'S is a cute picture book about the way that feedback can change an idea. A girl has..."
Ronan Boyle and the Swamp of Certain Death (Ronan Boyle, #2)
 
4.0
"RONAN BOYLE AND THE SWAMP OF CERTAIN DEATH is a comedic middle grade fantasy that features a young boy on..."
Sharko and Hippo
 
4.5
"SHARKO AND HIPPO is a clever and comical book about two best friends who are going fishing for the day...."
Zora's Zucchini
 
5.0
"ZORA'S ZUCCHINI is a delightful picture book that explores growing vegetables and sharing with neighbors. Zora is a little bored..."