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YMMV / Jacqueline Wilson

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  • Anvilicious: Wilson really seems to dislike the creep of American English into Britain and frequently disparages it through her characters. Protagonists and those around them will comment on how people are "supposed" to speak and react derisively when others use American expressions. Although, in Dustbin Baby, April herself writes about "jocks", which definitely is normally associated with American English.
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  • Critical Research Failure: In her older books Wilson seems pretty clueless about how video players work. For example, she often mentioned the characters' (on screen) voices not being muted when someone hits fast forward.
  • Designated Villain: Rose from Double Act. Ruby and Garnet, who are the POV characters, hate her with a passion simply because she starts dating their father and eventually becomes their step-mother. They describe her as awful and interfering but it's obvious, particularly to older readers, that she's just a nice, normal woman who wants to be part of their family. They warm up to her in the end, though Garnet does so quicker than Ruby.
    • Sam from "Lizzie Zipmouth" and Mark from "The Lottie Project", for exactly the same reason as Rose. Also, their respective children, Rory and Jake (Sam), and Robin (Mark, although he's not ever really a villain, as Charlie does consider him cute, though wimpy).In Mark's case, Charlie still seems to be pretty down on him, by the end of the book
  • Fridge Horror: When you re-read the books when you're older you realise just how bad the situations a lot of the characters are in are. Honourable mentions of some of the most serious themes portrayed in the books include death (accidental and suicide), domestic abuse, terminal and mental illness, homophobia, homelessness, ephebophilia, drug abuse, sexual assault, and bullying.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The protagonist of The Bed and Breakfast Star is named Elsa, after a famous lion. She notes how unique her name is - but as of 2013, this isn't necessarily true.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Holly in "The Worry Website," whose mother left her and her father and baby sister Hannah (and later dated a jerkass who was mean to Holly and Hannah), forcing her to take care of Hannah more often than not. When her father starts dating Hannah's teacher Miss Morgan, she is incredibly rude and immature towards her (even when Miss Morgan tries to reach out to her), and is also very insensitive towards her classmate Samantha- who also went through a similar situation of divorce.
  • Nightmare Fuel: The graphic suicide scene in Dustbin Baby. Kudos also goes to the scene in which Dolphin finds Marigold in The Illustrated Mum after Star has left them. Having painted herself completely in toxic paint to hide her tattoos, Marigold then goes on to ramble about using a razor to remove them, but doing so would be too bloody.
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  • Periphery Demographic: A lot of adults read her books, some of whom read them as children and still read them even now. It's not unheard of for parents or teachers to develop an interest in her books after seeing plenty of young girls read them, either.
  • Sanity Slippage: Two notable characters are Jade from Vicky Angel and Marigold from The Illustrated Mum. Vicky's death hits Jade so hard that it renders her practically numb throughout most of the book suffering from extremely realistic hallucinations of Vicky, involving talking with her, hearing her, and being controlled by her. It's likely a result of her grief, but people who suffer from schizophrenia experience very similar, realistic delusions. Marigold collapses from a mental breakdown and ends up hospitalised after her eldest daughter abandons her and her sister to be with her father. It's so visceral that you can almost feel it building up throughout the story, little things Marigold does and her gradually-becoming-more-unstable behaviour tells the listener that it's all going to go wrong soon.
  • Tear Jerker: Plenty, but special mention should go to Tina's attempted suicide in Falling Apart. It's heartbreaking. Jodie's death in My Sister Jodie is also hard to read without tearing up. Just try and keep those last few pages in focus. Vicky's farewell to Jade after growing wings and finally being able to move on after her death in Vicky Angel. Not death-related, but instances such as Marigold's mental breakdown in The Illustrated Mum and Jayni's mum getting breast cancer are particularly difficult to read through, especially if you've experienced witnessing a loved one go through the same situations.
    • In Vicky Angel, as many people who suffer from grief do, Jade discusses with the reader how she's thought of suicide to be with Vicky, including her graphic thoughts on the correct method to do it.
  • Toy Ship: Most of Wilson's books have this in some form. With the exception of Kiss, Dustbin Baby, Love Lessons, Opal Plumstead and the Girls series, all of her protagonists from Tracy Beaker onwards are under 13 years old.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: Take a Good Look is about a partially sighted girl who decides to go out shopping alone even though she's not allowed, and is caught up in an armed robbery. It faced criticism when it came out for being aimed at 6 to 9-year-olds despite the disturbing descriptions of the heroine being threatened and violently attacked by people she can't see. This is probably the reason it isn't in print any more.
    • Most of Jacqueline Wilson's works fall under this trope. Even though the stories are told from the perspective of children aged 13 or under, they are often themed around real family problems as well as other forms of Adult Fear, all of which become even more terrifying when read by an actual adult. The endings are not completely happy, either.


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