I have to start by saying that I loved the Babysitters Club as a kid. I started reading the books in 1991, shortly after I moved back to the U.S. and discovered them for the first time, and I read them straight through until I was "way too old for them." The last book I owned was Mary Anne and Miss Priss, which I believe is #73 and I'm pretty sure that was 1994 or 1995. The last book I read as a kid was Kristy + Bart = ? (#95, I believe). And so as not to be seen reading it, I hid in the corner of the book store and read the whole thing. I was that embarrassed by being sucked in.
So, a few years ago, a friend of mine introduced me to the concept of a BSC blog by way of Claudia's Room and the wonderful Tiff. I started picking up BSC books at the library, both those I had read and those I hadn't. I actually had to join a second library to get some, and I still haven't gotten ahold of all the books I want to read (SS #15, I'm looking at you!) I was going to make my own blog, but I didn't have regular internet access at the time and it all ended up going by the wayside. Then, a few months ago, I discovered BSC Revisited and The BSC Snarker, Kristen, and fell back in love. After discovering there are actually quite a few BSC blogs, and those that delve into the BSC sometimes and are about 80s kids books, I went back to my idea of my own blog.
I had to figure out how to make my blog a little different. Yes, I'm totally copying the other blogs I've read in some ways, like putting a quote for each book with the title. Why tamper with genius? (and I don't mean Janine or Rosie Wilder.) And I think I've got it. I'm going to try to blog vaguely in order of the books and see which clients are introduced in each book, for starters. It's easier to do in later books, because whenever a new client comes in, they're always the subject of the plot or subplot. But the earlier books introduce a lot of new clients.
I also thought it would be interesting to think about how old these characters would be now. For example, the series was created in 1986. Kristy, Claudia, Stacey and Mary Anne were 12 years old in that first book. Therefore, they were born in 1974 and will be turning 38 this year, making them older than Kristy's mom in the books. I thought this would be especially amusing in the later books, after the freaky Stoneybrook time warp takes effect. For example, Karen is friends with Melody Korman, who is about her age (eight, I think?). Yet Karen is introduced as five in 1986 and Melody isn't introduced until about 1991. This means Karen was born in 1981 and Melody in 1983, making them 31 and 29 respectively this year.
Speaking of Karen...you should know in advance that I hate her. This seems to be a universally held feeling. I have always felt someone should have punished her, told her to shut up, or beat her to death (justifiable homicide). This is added to the fact that Karen and I are the same age, and so far in the books I've read, she's the only character I've found that was born in 1981. I'll keep you updated on this.
I also plan on including the fashions/accessories from each book (paraphrased so that I don't have to copy them word for word), all of Claudia's misspellings, the "Huh?" moments and noodle-scratchers, and my general comments on the stupidity of it all. I particularly want to check out as many of the "modernizations" or re-writes as possible. I know they didn't change the awesomeness of the outfits, but I've heard that they've updated how Stacey deals with her diabetes and done stuff like change tapes to CDs and VCRs to DVD players. Should be interesting.
Look forward to my take on the High School Babysitters Club (updated from a post I made on my journal circa 2007) and my warped opinion on what the BSC would be doing today (based upon a story I wrote back while I was reading these books, so circa 1992.)
Currently, I have books 1-3 and 6, with 4, 5, 7, 8 and 10 on the way. Apparently, my library chain (with 20 branches) doesn't own a single copy of #9 The Ghost at Dawn's House. Will have to go to the other library, which is farther away but has a larger selection.