What happened when our college intern read a Baby-sitters Club book for the first time?
This year, we're celebrating 30 years of The Baby-sitters Club! We tasked our summer intern, Emily Bowman, with reading her very first BSC book and answering some questions about it. Thanks, Emily!
Since the height of Baby-sitters Club mania was a bit before my time, I was not an avid BSC fan growing up. I recall being familiar with the books here and there, but I never reached the status of true fandom. But now with all the hype surrounding the 30th anniversary of the BSC series, I have some catching up to do! So without that same sense of reminiscence for the BSC, I was interested to see what my impression of the series would be. Here is my fresh-eyes take of The Babysitters Club #9: The Ghost at Dawn’s House.
I could not put this book down!
I finished the ninth book of the BSC series in a single day, spending my entire commute to and from work completely absorbed in the story. The Ghost at Dawn’s House has a fun mystery element to it – after discovering a secret passage behind her bedroom wall, Dawn is convinced her house is haunted. With all the rainstorms and creepy noises, I was sure there was a ghost involved too…until the big reveal at the end that tied together the mystery passageway with, of course, babysitting!
I liked that the story was told exclusively from Dawn’s perspective, so I got a good sense of her character. Each of the girls is obviously so unique, and I loved learning new bits of information about them throughout the story – it made me feel more connected to the characters. For example, I now know that Claudia is a total junk foodie (same!), Dawn craves sunny California weather, and Kristy has lots of younger siblings. The mesh of different personalities allowed me to find something in each of the girls that I connected with, which made the story all the more engaging. I can definitely see how the series gets addicting!
I have to admit, I did some outside research into the Baby-sitters Club members. After exploring the BSC wiki page, I discovered that Kristy shares my birthday (August 20th!). With that knowledge, I feel a bit obliged to say she’s my favorite baby-sitter! I admire Kristy’s gung-ho spirit for the club and her pride in being its founding member. Although I don’t share her athletic abilities, I think they make her a fun, spunky character and heighten the “team-player” tendencies that make her such a good leader.
Overall, I’m hooked! As a veteran neighborhood babysitter myself, the BSC hits home in a lot of ways. I remember the first time I earned money babysitting and experienced that thrill of feeling so grown up. The girls’ stories definitely had me reminiscing on my middle school days, which is what I think makes the series so timeless. It turns out, The Baby-sitters Club will have you feeling nostalgic whether you read the books when you were younger or not!
The Ghost at Dawn's House 5-word book review: Dawn, don’t go in there!
*Related listening* Check out our podcast episode with Ann M. Martin, creator of the BSC, and Scholastic editorial director David Levithan for more behind-the-scenes looks at the making of The Baby-sitters Club!