Original Publication Date: 1996
Ghostwriter? Yes, Peter Lerangis
Dawn is back in Stoneybrook for the summer, and for once Jeff is visiting too. He and the Pike triplets are itching to earn money, and ask to be made BSC members. They come along to some of the jobs with different members, and often cause more problems than they solve. Making things worse, most of the BSC is trying to raise money to earn a reserved spot on the SMS summer trip to Hawaii, and they're having to split their pay with the boys. Dawn's able to make it because the school needs at least 50 people so they're willing to take non-students after students sign up. The boys end up not enjoying sitting enough to join the club, but do learn enough about it that they're helpful around kids. And the sitters are able to earn enough cash to pay for the trip plus some spending money.
Established or continued in this book:
The Girls (and Logan):
Claudia candy: Twinkies in her closet, mini Snickers under her bed, Nestle Crunch bars, Heath bars, Milky Way bars, Mallomars, Milk Duds, Ring Dings, and pretzels
Mary Anne has pierced ears? She's also apparently shrunk, since she had previously grown taller than Kristy and Mallory, at five-foot-one, is taller than Kristy, yet Mary Anne is described as just over five feet tall.
Oh, Shannon. No one cares that you can't come to the next Super Special because of summer camp. You barely count.
Dawn describes Richard Spier as "my stepdad" rather than "Mary Anne's dad," which implies that she feels part of the same family.
On the other hand, maybe she's trying to distance herself from her stepmother Carol, who offers cold cereal served over juice (I'm pretty sure she's serious). I once accidentally poured water on my cereal instead of milk and it was gross. It also wasn't my fault: I was around 8 and Dad would set out a bowl of cereal, a cup of milk on the left, and a cup of water on the right. I wasn't really awake one morning when they were switched.
The Club (and clients):
So honorary BSC members(who get sitting jobs) don't have to pay dues, but Claudia owed them for her time in the hospital, physically incapable of baby-sitting, recovering from the broken leg directly caused by baby-sitting. Nice.
At a meeting: "'Sit!' Kristy barked." My daughter, who will be two in late November, orders us to "SIT!" like that. Mostly when she wants us to sit next to her under a blanket, or across the room to play catch, or occasionally at the library so she can run away while we're sitting.
School is out for the summer...for the ninth time.
When changing a diaper, put the clean one under the dirty one. If there are any leaks, the new diaper will catch them.
This is Dawn's last book of the regular series.
This is the first book that I didn't read as a kid. I remember seeing the preview blurb for it at the back of Claudia and the World's Cutest Baby and noticing that it had the F word. No, not that one. Fart. I was appalled and losing interest anyway, so I never bothered to read it or any others until I was finishing college, about a decade later.
I always, always, every time, without fail, read the word "matinee" (an afternoon showing of a movie) as "manatee" (an aquatic mammal).
On page 110 the first-person narration briefly switches from Dawn's perspective to Stacey's. And on page 130, Mathew Hobart's name is spelled wrong, becoming the more common Matthew.
Starting 8th grade: 8
Halloweens in 8th grade: 5 (plus one in seventh)
Thanksgivings in 8th grade: 2
Winter holidays in 8th grade (that BSC members celebrate, not just reference): Christmas-2, Hanukkah-1, Kwanzaa-1
Valentine's Days in 8th grade: 3
Summers after 8th grade: 9
BSC Fights: 10
SMS Staff and Faculty: 56
Students (other than the BSC): 183: 118 8th graders (not including Amelia Freeman, who is deceased), 6 7th graders, 43 6th graders, 15 unspecified. Baby-sitters' Winter Vacation tells us that SMS has about 380 students.
Clients: 33 families
Types of candy in Claudia’s room: 119