Monday, November 19, 2012

The Baby-Sitters Club #93: Mary Anne and the Memory Garden

It’s just after the 400th Christmas in the series, and Mary Anne is missing Dawn a lot. Luckily, she has a new school project to take her mind off things.  She, this guy Gordon, and best friends Amelia and Barbara get assigned to the same group. They decide to talk about their Shakespeare project after school, and they start working on making an era-appropriate newspaper. Amelia leaves early to have dinner with her friends and everyone takes off.

The next day, Mary Anne is running late and as she meets with her friends, she hears that a 13-year-old girl died the night before. They keep running into other people who have more news, and she starts worrying that it might be Kristy. It turns out that it was Amelia. Her family was hit by a drunk driver, but everyone else survived. They hold a funeral for her, and Mary Anne breaks down because she realizes that she will never learn more about Amelia.

Kristy kind of loses her marbles after Amelia’s death. She keeps breaking down and crying because it isn’t fair that someone so young would die. When Logan mentions SADD, Kristy thinks it’s a great idea. She tells a teacher who immediately calls the organization. They start papering the school with information and Kristy takes control over the group during their first meeting.

Mary Anne can’t come to grips with her feelings so she goes to see Dr. Reese again. The doctor makes her realize that she needs to deal with her anger and unhappiness before she can get over her friend’s death. In the end, she decides to create a memory garden for Amelia and put a plaque on a bench for the girl, and the school agrees.

Meanwhile, Dawn is having problems in California because of an abandoned lot in her neighborhood. When one of her charges gets hurts, she decides to clean up the lot. She writes a letter to the owner of the lot, but then does the cleaning before she gets a response. They end up turning the lot into a garden, and the owner finally shows up. He warns them that it’s still his property and he can do anything he wants with it, but agrees to let them keep working on the garden.

*Mary Anne says that she heard the sirens from the accident after everyone left, but she made dinner, ate with her family, did homework, and wrote most of a letter to Dawn. Would it really have taken that long for Amelia’s family to eat at a restaurant?

*The group has enough money in the treasury to pay for flowers to send to the funeral. Given how expensive those flowers cost, they must have a ton of money.

*Kristy says that Dawn and Amelia were the main organizers of the Earth Day event. Um, wasn’t Dawn kind of thrown off that project?

*Their chapter is Students Against Driving Drunk, but the name was actually Students Against Drunk Driving. How did the editors miss that one? Apparently, SADD is now Students Against Destructive Decisions, which lets them cover more topics.

*Claudia gives Mary Anne the “great” news that Peaches is not only pregnant but six months along. That’s pretty good given that she had a miscarriage at some point in the last less-than-six-months.

*Dawn sends a letter to the lot owner in Tucson and expects a response by that Friday. She literally tells everyone to show up and start cleaning before he ever responds. Then, she doesn’t realize that he owns everything they put on the lot.

*Dawn is kind of a bitch though. She supposedly knew and worked with Amelia, but all of her letters to Mary Anne are about her new project.

*I don’t remember Amelia, though I know she was in some other books. It’s just annoying that she is supposed to be one of Mary Anne’s close friends.

*Speaking of annoying…Can anyone else in the club function as a leader? Kristy goes from depressed and crying to the leader of SADD in a few pages.

*There is one mention of Abby’s dad dying in a car crash, but Kristy is the one who is the most upset. It would make more sense if Abby was the one who got so sad/depressed, not because she was a good friend of Amelia’s, but because it reminded her of her dad.

*No one knows what to say to Amelia’s brother Josh when he comes back to school so Claudia reminds them of what people told her when Mimi died. I know that she and Mimi were close, but losing your grandmother is a lot different than losing a sibling.

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