The summer before there were four girls: Kristy, Mary Anne, Claudia and Stacey, each individuals with their own interests, families and even at times their own problems. Kristy is busy struggling to deal with the loss of her father and addition of her mother’s boyfriend and children to her family. The always-shy Mary Anne is trying desperately to show her own overly protective father that she’s growing up and not a baby anymore. And the new girl Stacey is moving away from the only home she has ever known in New York City to Stoneybrook, Connecticut after a diagnosis of diabetes, which has up until this point in her view ruined her life and friendships. While Claudia has moved ahead of them all in her modern interests in fashion, art and even boys, as she navigates her first crush who just happens to be the boy her sister also has a crush on. What are the girls to do as summer takes them on such a wild ride?
This was the summer before seventh grade and most importantly it’s the summer before the creation of “The Baby-Sitter’s Club”. The club that made them not just more grown up but what made them grow together. Before they were four separate girls but after it made them inseparable, it made them best friends. It was also a club that through books created a place for a generation of girls to grow together, to feel like they too belonged and learn to love reading. Now the beloved series is back for the next generation.
In the prequel to what has become one of the most loved and most successful series of all time, Ann M. Martin has once again given girls a voice they can relate to as they travel the journey to their teen years. Awakening this best selling series by telling what truly brought the girls together before they became the famous “The Baby-Sitter’s Club” is a the ideal beginning to updating the series for a new generation. Wonderfully told and as always perfectly written for its intended audience, Ann M. Martin has once again worked her magic. Characters of truth, the pangs of youth and the miracle of learning about who you are as a person are all attributes that have made this series legendary. The Summer Before is the perfect beginning for the journey to start again.
I cannot tell you how excited I am to see this series re-vamped for the next generation. I grew up in the eighties when The Baby-Sitter’s Club was at it’s best and am so excited that the girls of today will be able to be exposed to this and in an updated way. I always tried to cling to our old paperback copies at the library…I couldn’t help it, they were such a part of my childhood! The Summer Before is a great start to all this. We also have two other books in the series that came out April 1st: Kristy’s Great Idea and Claudia and the Phantom Phone Calls. June will bring The Truth About Stacey as well. As you can expect the re-emergence of this series has a lot of people talking. Below are some articles that I found interesting:
- The Summer Before: a Prequel to the Phenomenally Successful Scholastic Series, to Be Published in April 2010
- Previewing the ‘Baby-sitters Club’ prequel: What’s Claudia wearing?