I have read this book three times recently, and in thinking about it, I really only like this book because it takes place in New York City. The actual book is not really that interesting in my opinion. Most of the girls have sort of boring plots ( other than Jessi, her plot is rather life-changing for her). I was just so happy that the book takes place in one of the best cities, EVER!!!
The members of the BSC somehow have two weeks off from school ( we sometimes got almost 2 weeks off during Christmas vacation, but otherwise we’d get a week off at a time at most, other than summer vacay of course). But the BSC seem to constantly get two weeks off. Some of the BSC members will stay with Stacey and her father at her dad’s apartment ( that would be Stacey of course, Claudia, and Dawn) and the rest of the girls are going to stay with Laine and her parents ( which I find REALLY odd, as Laine’s parents barely know these girls- I don’t care how close the Cummingses are with Mr. McGill- no way in hell would I be having all of these 13 year olds that I barely know stay at my house for 2 weeks!!). Well here are the plots of each girl- some girls I am grouping together as they sort of share plots
Claudia and Mal: Both are talking art classes for two weeks at the Fine Arts League of New York ( or FALNY). In fact, Claudia is the one who sort of makes the New York trip happen- Claudia’s parents let her take the classes for two weeks in NY because Stacey will be visiting her dad, Mallory’s parents also let her take the art classes, and Stacey’s father says the rest of the members of the BSC can visit, too, naturally. Claudia is hoping that the art teacher, MacKenzie Clark, will discover her talents as a great artist. Mallory is just hoping how to learn magic mushrooms and cartoon animals and what not because Mallory wants to write and illustrate children’s books when she grows up.) Claudia gets really upset because MacKenzie always yells at Claudia to slow down and seems to always criticize her, as he tells Mallory she’s doing a good job. Claudia begins to resent Mallory and calls her ” teacher’s pet.” One day at the Cloisters, (which I want to visit sooo bad- it’s all medieval and what not!) Claudia finally decides to slow down when she draws, and when Mac as some of the kids call him sees Claudia’s ” slowed down” art Mac remarks that Claudia is one of the most talented young artists he has ever known, and if Claudia had a bit more discipline she’d be even better. Mac also remarks that Mallory is not as talented, but is very disciplined and if you put Claud and Mallory together you’d have the best artist ever. So Claudia is finally happy that Mac recognized her talents, and Mallory decides that pro art classes aren’t for her- Mallory is satisfied with how she draws, and decides to work on a children’s book about 2 mice, Meaghan and Ryan, visiting NYC and getting into wacky adventures. That actually sounds like a great children’s book to be honest!
Stacey and Mary Anne- Yes, babysitting has to be involved somehow, you know that. Mr. and Mrs. Cummings’s neighbors’ cousins are visiting from England, and both of these people have very important political jobs in England and have to work for the two weeks, so they ask Laine and her parents if they know of anyone who would be able to be a nanny for the two children, Rowena age 4 and Allistair age 7, as well as ” have the kids see the city as a child would.” Laine immediately recruits the BSC, and Stacey and Mary Anne volunteer for the job. Rowena and Allistair act stereotypically British and proper of course, and say ” brilliant” a lot, and Stacey and Mary Anne take the kids to Central Park and FAO Schwartz and places like that. Mary Anne keeps seeing a man in a rain hat and sunglasses and is convinced this man is following Rowena and Allistair around in order to kidnap them. Mary Anne gets Stacey to agree that the kids’ lives are in danger, and Stacey suggests talking to Rowena and Allistair’s parents about this so that they know the possible risk to their children. Well the Harringtons ( R and A’s parents) laugh out loud when Stace and MA tell them about their worries. Mr. and Mrs. Harrington tell Mary Anne and Stacey that the children were being followed- by their bodyguard wearing a disguise. Mr. and Mrs. Harrington wanted their kids to enjoy New York without being attached to a bodyguard, and they didn’t tell Mary Anne and Stacey because they would freak out ( and Mary Anne agrees that she would have freaked out.). Once Mary Anne and Stacey meet the bodyguard, they always wave at him.
Dawn- Supremely annoying in this book. Dawn is PETRIFIED of NYC though she had been there before ( and what she never went to Los Angeles when she was younger? Just as dangerous, I am sure, and plus home to the Lakers, who suck ass- I am all about the Celtics baby!) and Dawn is constantly afraid she will be mugged or shot. Dawn refuses to sightsee, so she’s always in Mr. McGill’s apartment ( sometimes alone which I don’t get- being alone in a house is the worst thing you could do sometimes!! Why not sightsee with Kristy, Jessi, Stacey et al? It’d be a lot safer!!). Eventually, the boy who lives downstairs, Richie Magnesi, randomly comes to the apartment to introduce himself one day, and tells Dawn he will show her a great time around NYC and take her to places that many non New Yorkers don’t know about. They eat Godiva chocolates ( umm I live in CT they totes have Godiva at the local mall, and did back when I first read this book in like 5th grade), go to the Laura Ashley store ( how is hippy dippy Ms Alterna Dawn into Laura Ashley??) and go to Little Italy and Soho and what not. Dawn ” eats her way through the city” as she puts it and also bitches over eating cannoli because it will ruin her teeth. Dawn ends up really getting a crush on Ritchie, even though they never kiss or anything (well Richie knowing about Laura Ashley.. yeah probably a friend of Dorothy…)
Jessi- Has the best plot ever in this book. But before I go into that- Jessi was all upset because her parents won’t let her wander NYC alone- well DUH Jessi you are fucking 11! I would barely allow my 11 year old to be home alone in her own house at night, never mind wander NYC by herself!!! So one day Laine, Stacey, Mary Anne and the kids drop off Jessi for her to watch Swan Lake at Lincoln Center. A boy ends up sitting next to Jessi and his name is Quint- I think he is about 13 or so though we are never told that. Well, Jessi and Quint end up REALLY hitting it off- I mean he is also black, a boy dancer. The boy dancer thing is an issue for Quint- he has the opportunity to dance at Julliard, but he is nervous to try out because the boys in the neighborhood make fun of him for enjoying dance. Jessi gets Quint to audition, saying that those boys making fun of his shouldn’t let Quint not pursue his dream. By the way, to digress a bit, one day Jessi has a cow because Quint invites Jessi over to watch movies at his house,and Laine says she wants to meet Quint’s family and get his phone number before letting Jessi go there alone, and yes Laine walks there with Jessi. Jessi says she feels Laine is treating her like a baby and Laine says it’s just common sense- yeah HELLO-Jessi you are ELEVEN! And going to the home of a boy you barely know!! Jeez Louise Jessi can be very annoying when she wants to be. Well, Quint ends up giving Jessi her first kiss,and he becomes Jessi’s first boyfriend.
Kristy- Kristy and Jessi are wandering Central Park one day when Kristy finds a lost dog. Kristy ends up taking the dog in because she can’t find tags. Laine says the dog has to be hidden from her parents and Kristy assumes it’s because the Dakota apartments don’t allow dogs, so Kristy keeps having to hide the dog Kristy has named Sonny, as in Son of Louie, because he reminds Kristy of her late dog, Louie. Kristy had wanted to take the dog to CT, but Watson won’t allow it. Well, one day despite Kristy hiding the dog, the Cummings do find Sonny and tell Kristy they don’t want a dog, either, ( and the apartment does allow pets it’s Laine’s parents that don’t) and Kristy works hard to find Sonny a new owner. A little boy named Brandon calls to say he really wants a dog, and Kristy goes to the apartment and even though Brandon’s apartment isn’t as great as Laine’s Kristy lets Brandon keep the dog anyway- damn, Kristy can be a snob- but seriously that’s kind f what she says. Brandon is great with Sonny and Kristy is happy that Sonny has a great owner- and that Brandon is keeping the name Sonny!
So that’s about it for this book. I really really hope I visit NYC again soon!!! And coming up soon in this here blog- Sweet Valley Twins #7, Three’s a Crowd, Baby Sitters Island Adventure, and SVH #58 Brokenhearted!