Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Book Review-The Baby-Sitters Club, The Summer Before by Ann M. Martin

To Be Released April 1, 2010
Published by Scholastic
5 Stars

Before there was the Baby-Sitters Club, there were four girls named Kristy Thomas, Mary Anne Spier, Claudia Kishi, and Stacey McGill. As they start the summer before seventh grade (also before they start the BSC), each of them is on the cusp of a big change. Kristy is still hung up on hoping that her father will return to her family. Mary Anne has to prove to her father that she's no longer a little girl who needs hundreds of rules. Claudia is navigating her first major crush on a boy. And Stacey is leaving her entire New York City life behind in order to find new friends in Stoneybrook, Connecticut.

Separately, it's a lot to deal with. But together, these friends will find a way to make it through-with plenty of laughter, tears, and surprises along the way.

Whether you are a fan of the original Baby Sitters Club series or if this is your first visit to Stoneybrook, The Summer Before is a sweet, moving novel about four girls on the edge of something big-not just the club that will change their lives, but also the joys, and tribulations about being a girl. (taken from cover)

Being a huge fan of the original Baby Sitters Club, I gave this book 5 stars, as Ann did a wonderful job at keeping the integrity of the characters and being true to their voices. I feel that author sometimes tend to forget their true characters when they add a book to their popular series, but this wasn't the case at all. Ann did an excellent job with this upcoming release. I think this book is a must have addition to the ever popular series. It brought back some feelings I had when I first read about Mary Ann, Kristy, Claudia and Stacey. I think fans of the original series and new fans alike will love this book.

We get to see what they girls went through the summer before the club was started. I think Ann captured all the right emotions and things we go through as we're growing up. The summer between the girls 6th grade going on to 7th grade year was a tough one for them. There are joys and sorrows. We get to see what each girl is dealing with and how.

Kristy is dealing with her dad not coming back and her mother dating Watson. Claudia deals with the struggles of growing up faster than her close friends Mary Ann and Kristy and their relationship this summer is strained, as she spends time with her first boyfriend and deals with her first heartache. Mary Ann is struggling with the fact that her over protective dad isn't allowing her to grow up and be the more responsible young lady she's becoming. While I really loved reading more about the girls, I really liked learning more about Stacey. While many people would have been devastated to leave New York, Stacey wanted nothing more than to get a fresh start, which would be in Stoneybrook, CT.

Be sure to pick up this must have for any BSC fan new and old alike!

Be sure to let Scholastic know who your favorite babysitter club member is and enter to win a chance to meet Ann Martin. http://onourmindsatscholastic.blogspot.com/2010/03/my-excitement-cannot-be-contained-in.html
I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~ Anna Quindlen

Good children's literature appeals not only to
the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child.
~ Anonymous ~