Friday, May 29, 2015

The Baby-Sitters Club Super Special #10: Sea City, Here We Come!

The Pikes are heading back to Sea City, but this time, Mrs. Barrett is going too. She somehow managed to rent a smaller house right next to theirs on the beach. The Pikes also ask Jessi to go in place of Stacey or Mary Anne to help them out. Stacey goes with Mrs. Barrett as her helper. Franklin plans to come up for a few days too, and he agrees to bring the rest of the gang with him for a few days.

Jessi is the one who starts the special book for their vacation. She's super worried about what the Pikes think of her and how they'll hate her for not working as hard as the older girls do. She goes overboard making breakfast and taking care of the kids. Suzi, Margo, and Claire also want to enter some sand castle building competition with her help. It turns out that it's a big deal and people come from all over the world to compete. She tries to talk them out of it, but they want to compete. The competition ends up getting canceled due to a major hurricane.

Karen gets a chapter for some reason. She's back in Stoneybrook when Hurricane Bill comes through and worries about what will happen to Kristy. The storm comes through in the middle of the night, but her whole family gets up and listens to the radio together. Then, she helps police clean up the next day.

Kristy finds out at the last minute that she doesn't have enough players for some big game against Bart's team. She runs around town and finds players who have no experience because she doesn't want to forfeit. They end up losing really bad to his team, but since it's Kristy, she gets over it pretty fast.

Claudia gets stuck in summer school yet again and meets some cool girls. One of them plans a special party for them on the same day that she leaves. She thinks about going up later but decides to go anyway. She really has no story.

Dawn and Mary Anne host a summer camp for kids at their home. They throw a slumber party for them on the last night. Dawn scares everyone when she makes up a story about the ghost of her barn and his dead fiance. Once they get to Sea City, Mary Anne worries about seeing Alex and Toby again.

Logan comes up for a few days and goes out of his way to make Mary Anne think about him and not Alex. They do all the typical romantic stuff before he leaves. When the hurricane hits, he thinks that she spent the whole time with Alex but later finds out that they were nowhere near each other. He then plans a huge horse drawn carriage thing when she gets back.

Mallory runs into Toby, who suddenly thinks that she's cute. They run into each other at the miniature golf course, and he asks her out. This sends Stacey into a tailspin, which leads to them constantly fighting. In the end, Mallory realizes that she likes Ben way better than she likes Toby.

Stacey is pissed that Toby dumped her and now has a thing for Mallory. She's also unhappy with Mrs. Barrett and how she's so scattered all the time. After whiny throughout the whole book, she goes to Mallory and apologizes. Then there's something at the end about Mrs. Barrett apologizing to her.

Hurricane Bill comes through and washes out the only access to Sea City. Both families and all the sitters wind up spending a few days at the local school. They then go back, help clean up the beach a little, and then go home.

*The adults go crazy and don't know what to do when the hurricane gets closer. Kristy is the one who suggests they go to a hotel, because adults can't do anything without the help of a teen girl.

*I think it's a little cute that Mrs. Barrett and Franklin rent two separate houses instead of living together.

*The Pikes actually have to rent a van just to have enough room to bring all the BSC members back. Where do they get their money from??

*I think it's creepy that Toby goes after Mallory. He's supposed to be older than Stacey and is around 14 or 15, but Mal is only 11!

*Mallory's date outfit is a blue and white polka dotted skirt, a white tank top, and a blue men's shirt tied in front. Claudia picks out these cool buttons and pink flamingo barrettes for her to wear too. Mal says that the buttons had faces of Stephen Hawking, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and other people but that Claudia didn't know who anyone was. I find it hard to believe that Mallory would know those people. Also, one is of Virginia Wolf, which seems like a weird person to put on a button.

*Stacey wears a long white tee shirt, white capris pants, a brown leather belt, and leather thongs. It's not bad, but it doesn't seem appropriate for a 13-year-old girl.

*Mallory is totally wearing running shoes and socks on the cover of this book. Who wears that to the beach?

*Mrs. Barrett drives over a curb and curses. Stacey tells her that her dad always does the same thing because he grew up in NYC and didn't learn to drive until he was an adult. She's shocked that Mrs. Barrett really doesn't care because adults usually love that story. Sure, Stacey, sure.

*Toby tells Mallory to let him know if she has any cute single friends and later writes to ask her about Jessi. She's all shocked that he would do that, but what did she expect? He is the same guy who dumped one of her "best" friends.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Fear Street: Sunburn (R.L. Stine)

Claudia Walker wakes up on the beach and can't move her arms or legs. Laying there, she realizes that she's been buried alive in the sand and that no one is nearby. Despite her worries, she finally starts screaming in the hopes that someone will hear her and come help her.

Claudia then flashes back to the day she got an invitation in the mail from her old summer camp friend Marla. She invited Claudia, Joy, and Sophie to spend a week with her in her family's summer home. Claudia recalls Marla picking them up from the train station and starts crying. A random guy suddenly shows up and helps her out of the sand.

She notices that his skin feels a little cold, which he explains away as being from the ocean. He helps her back to the house and hesitates when she asks his name before telling her that it's Daniel. Daniel, for some reason, knows the code to enter the locked gate around the house and helps her inside. When she tries to introduce him to her friends, who claim they didn't know she was still on the beach, he disappears.

When Claudia tells her friends about him over dinner, Marla claims that he's the ghost boy. She says she saw him on the tennis courts once and that he lives in the guest house. Just as they all start freaking out, she reveals it was all a joke. We also meet her butler/servant Alfred when he serves a salad and Joy screams. There was a worm in her lettuce, and she has a massive fear of bugs. Alfred carries it away and serves them hamburgers. Later, Claudia flips out when she thinks that she sees someone in the guest house. Marla convinces her that it was just a trick of the light.

The next morning, Claudia and Marla have some alone time together. Claudia brings up Alison and reveals that Marla's sister Alison died the summer before. Marla gets angry and storms off. Later that same day, they head down to the beach, and Sophie almost gets electrocuted when she grabs the electrified fence and it's still turned on. She's okay, but Marla keeps swearing that it should automatically shut off during the day.

They get a few minutes alone before two random guys show up. Claudia swears that one is Daniel but it isn't. They introduce themselves as Carl and Dean, and they're kind of asses. They start going through their cooler and picnic baskets without permission and basically tell Marla that if she's good, they'll share with her. Joy and Sophie naturally think they are the hottest things ever. Dean also slaps Marla and says he was knocking off a bug before they run off.

Sophie and Joy get super bored that night, and since there aren't many things to do in the area, they decide to go to the boardwalk. Carl and Dean show up, and Joy and Sophia pretty much immediately leave with them. Marla wanders off, and Claudia gets all excited when she sees Daniel and accidentally calls him ghost boy. When he hears her nickname for him, she kind of just laughs it off.

Daniel still feels cold to her touch, but he convinces her that she really needs to get on the ferris wheel with him. When they get close to the top, Daniel leans over the side and falls to his death. This causes Claudia to flashback to what happened the summer before.

Alison was Marla's little sister and a major pain in the ass. Every time she caught them doing something wrong, she told on them. She showed up when they were playing truth or dare and threatened to tell the counselors on them if they didn't let her play. Marla gave her two options: tell them about the time she made out with Marla's boyfriend or walk the log across this massive gorge. Marla stayed behind, while the others went with her. She got halfway across, freaked out, and then they all ran away when the counselors came.

Claudia then comes back to the present day and sees that Daniel is fine. He teases her and says that since he's a ghost, he simply floated away. They flirt some more after getting off the ride and wander around the boardwalk. Just as they find her friends, she turns around and he's gone again. When they get home that night, everyone heads to bed, but Claudia wakes up when she hears Joy screaming.

It turns out that someone sneaked into her room and put leeches on her after she went to sleep. Marla flips out and rushes off to find Alfred. Once she's gone, Joy says that she thinks Marla lured them there to pay them back for what happened to her sister. After everyone finally goes back to bed, Claudia goes downstairs for a glass of water and thinks that she sees Daniel. Alfred pops up long enough to tell her that Marla changed all the codes and that no one other than their group now has access to the house.

The next day, they all go water skiing. Sophie goes first and goes down hard. Marla claims the boat stalled, and since Sophie seems to be drowning, Claudia rushes out to save her. They both get caught in an undertow that drags them out to sea. She passes out and wakes up to find that Dean and Carl came out of nowhere to save them. They then admit that they stole the boat to save them and take off. Joy finds that someone cut the rope Sophie used and once again suggests that something is up with Marla.

Claudia flashes back to what really happened that night last summer. Alison begged them to help her but they still ran away. Claudia could still hear her begging for help. The counselors searched for her the next day but only found her blood stained shirt. The girls briefly wonder if Marla brought them there to torture them before she pops up with chocolates for them.

This next part is cray-cray. Claudia goes for a walk on the beach and thinks she sees Marla. The other girl runs away, and Claudia then realizes that there are literally no animals or birds on the beach. A big ass dog comes out of nowhere and chases her into the ocean. She and the dog fight until she sees a shark coming towards her. Claudia then gets caught in the riptide and pulled out to sea, but she does see the shark attack the dog first.

Claudia wakes up on the beach to see Marla standing over her. Marla says she saw her on the beach and thought she was dead. She helps her back to the house, but Claudia then realizes that the dog that attacked her was Marla's guard dog. When they get back, she runs to get Sophie and Joy, but Joy is out on a date. Marla then comes in and helps take care of her injuries.

When Joy gets back, they pack their things and decide to run away before Marla can stop them. After opening a closet to grab some extra things, they see Marla's body fall out. Though they think it's weird that they saw her earlier and she now looks like she's been dead for a few days, they still run outside. That's when they find that the fence is still active and they can't leave.

They try to find the switch to turn it off and stumble across Marla. Turns out that she's actually Alison. She totally didn't die the summer before. Right before she fell off the log, she saw Marla smiling and laughing at her in the woods. When she came to the next day, she pretended that she had amnesia. She then came to the beach house and killed the real Marla before they arrived. Now she plans to kill all of them for what happened.

Just as she starts pointing a gun at them, Daniel comes rushing out of the dark. He and Alison fight over the gun as lightning strikes and knocks out the power. She gets away and runs towards the fence. Though she knows the power is off, she grabs it right as the generator kicks in. Even though Sophie survived grabbing the fence before, it electrocutes and kills Alison.

Daniel then reveals that he's Alfred's college student son. He didn't want his dad to get fired for having him there so he hid in the guest house. Joy and Sophie agree to go inside and call the cops, and Daniel decides to prove he's not a ghost by grabbing Claudia and kissing her.

Isn't this the exact same plot of Slumber Party, or was it Weekend by Christopher Pike? A bunch of girls spend the weekend together with one sister who survived a fire. In the end, it turns out to be the sister everyone thought was dead bringing them there to enact her revenge.

Monday, May 25, 2015

The Baby-Sitters Club #46: Mary Anne Misses Logan

In case you missed the title of this book, Mary Anne misses Logan. Despite being the one who called things off, she can't really remember why they stopped talking. All she knows is that now she misses him and can't stop thinking about him.

At the same time, SMS launches yet another new program. All the eighth graders will get assigned into groups of four. Each group has to create a project around a young adult writer they get assigned. Mary Anne instantly starts worrying about who will be in her group. When she finally gets her assignment, she's in a group with Pete and Miranda, one of those twins she and Kristy used to hang around, but Logan is also in her group.

During their first meeting, the principal comes over with a problem. Cokie, who never gave a crap about school before, suddenly has an extreme interest in Meghan Reinhart, the author they were assigned. Miranda jumps at the chance to switch places with her because she hates Pete for snapping her bra strap the year before. Cokie really doesn't care about the author, she just wants to get close to Logan.

That becomes even clearer when they have a meeting at her house. She keeps getting the name of the author wrong, drools over Logan the whole time, and just acts like a pest. Cokie also has no interest in reading the books. At another meeting, she gets the name of the book wrong and keeps making comments about all the dates she had with Logan.

Pete and Mary Anne eventually have a sit down where they talk about how the other two don't plan on finishing the assignment. They decide to just do all the work themselves. Then, they find out that Reinhart will actually come to the school for an assembly and that the principal wants them to make a special presentation. They decide to do the whole thing themselves but only present their own parts, which will let their teachers know that Cokie and Logan did nothing.

Logan then calls and asks Mary Anne for help. He did his part of the project but knows that Cokie didn't do anything. Logan wants to coordinate his stuff with their work for the presentation. The day finally arrives, and the three do a good job. Cokie just reads off the dust jacket and looks confused a lot. Logan then asks her out.

They go out to dinner and admit that they both missed each other. He says that he spent so much time with Cokie because he missed having Mary Anne around. They don't necessarily get back together but agree to spend more time with each other and start seeing each other again. Mary Anne then goes home and finds herself doodling his name with her name.

This is also the book where the Korman kids think there's a monster in their toilet. Claudia, Kristy, and Mary Anne all sit for them and try to help them get over it. Kristy tells them about the foxes she once thought were under her bed and the fears her mom had, but nothing really works. It's kind of stupid too because there's no resolution at the end of the book. They're still terrified of a monster living in the toilet.

*Mary Anne mentions that when she needs to talk to someone, she would go to Dawn, then Logan, and then Kristy. It's nice to know that your "best friend" falls below your ex-boyfriend on that list.

*Stacey outfit: paisley print leggings, long shirt, black man's fedora, and black lace up foots with silver jewelry.

*MA makes a comment about Kristy not wearing a bra yet. Does that mean Mary Anne finally got her first bra?

*Pete snapped Miranda's strap once, which caused her bra to break. It rolled down around her waist until she could go to the bathroom.

*Cokie is so passive aggressive! At one point, she pours her and Logan a drink and then just shoves the bottles at Pete and Mary Anne.

*This is one of the books where Bill Korman makes a comment about how they always have hot dogs when they have a sitter. I'm sure this comes up again in other books.

*Mary Anne asks Logan if he missed having a girlfriend or if he missed her. He says he missed her, but it really seems like he just missed having a girlfriend. Cokie and Mary Anne are complete opposites, and all the stuff he does with Cokie is completely unlike what he did with Mary Anne, so it seems like he just missed having someone around.