I said previously in my mini-review of The Naughty List by Suzanne Young — our July Book of the Month series — that reading it made me feel nostalgic for The Baby-sitters Club by Ann M. Martin.
When I told this to Suzanne recently, she kind of looked at me like I was crazy. And I get it. I do.
For starters, The Baby-sitters Club is iconic. It’s been around for years. I grew up with the books, along with countless other young women. Also, they’re somewhat sweet and innocent. (And innocent is not a word I’d use to describe the characters in The Naughty List, let’s be honest). And while Suzanne’s books are definitely targeted towards an older set of readers, there is still a commonality between the two series:
Girls sticking together.
And while the Smitten Kittens and SOS featured in The Naughty List aren’t exactly on the same level as The Baby-sitters Club, they are also both groups of girls who have formed this “club” for a common goal. And they put each other first — above all else.
So, feeling nostalgic for The Baby-sitters Club, and considering that Martin just recently released some new/updated versions of the books, I figured what better time to highlight this classic book series than now!
There are well over 100 titles in The Baby-sitters Club series (and you can view the full list online at Scholastic), but in case you need a refresher — or if you’re actually being introduced to this series for the very first time — here is a synopsis of the first book:
Follows the adventures of Kristy and the other members of the Baby-Sitters Club as they deal with crank calls, uncontrollable two-year-olds, wild pets, and parents who do not always tell the truth.
Of course, the original Baby-sitters Club books are no longer in print, and can only be purchased used — if you can find them. BUT, Scholastic announced earlier this year that it would be reissuing some of the original Baby-sitters Club books, and that Martin would be writing a new prequel! The prequel — The Baby-sitters Club: The Summer Before and the new versions came out in April and are available now. The newly-reissued titles include:
Here is a look at the official synopsis for the new prequel, The Summer Before:
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.
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 all the joys and tribulations of being twelve and thirteen.
For the comments: Did you read The Baby-sitters Club growing up? What do you remember about the series? What other “club” book series did you read?