Scholastic recently released the first YA prose novel set in the Riverdale universe. The novel, titled Riverdale: The Day Before, takes place literally the day before the pilot episode of Riverdale.
Riverdale: The Day Before is written by Micol Ostow. She does an excellent job capturing the voices of the characters of the show. Each chapter reads like you’re in the head of one of the characters.
My only issue with the novel is the extremely low stakes nature of it. Since Riverdale: The Day Before takes place right before the pilot episode of Riverdale, you know going in that the cast is safe. This is unlike any given episode of the show, where any episode could be a character’s last. And if you haven’t watched season one of Riverdale yet, do not read this novel first. Many of the twists and turns of season one, especially some late season plot twists are spelled out here. They would definitely spoil things for the viewer who hasn’t watched the show yet.
For me, the character with the most interesting story in The Day Before is Veronica. She’s also the character with the most to lose. Veronica has yet to move to town. She is still living the devil-may-care New York City socialite life. I’ve often described Gossip Girl as Veronica: The New York Years, and Veronica could definitely fit in with Serena van der Woodsen and company in the pages of this novel. I don’t think I would have blinked an eye if Blair Waldorf showed up in a Veronica chapter of The Day Before.
I think the main audience for this novel is the Riverdale fan looking for a fix when the show is on a break. This is pure Riverdale season one glory, and reads like a bonus episode of the show.
Contest! Win a copy of Riverdale: The Day Before
Are you interested in reading your own copy of Riverdale: The Day Before? You can win a copy from Comics Beat and Scholastic. Five lucky winners will win copies of the book. To enter, just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the answer to this question: Which Archie Comics character that has yet to appear on Riverdale do you want to see appear in the show next? Sorry international fans, but we have to limit this to US entries only.