Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Kristy slammed a plastic hammer on Claudia’s desk; or BSC #102: Mary Anne and the Little Princess

Holy crap, this one sucked…It’s really hard to read some of the later ones…With the books that I read the first time around, at least there’s a nostalgia element or whatever. But these later ones? SUCK!!!!!!!

So, in this book, a distant heir to the British throne comes to Stoneybrook. The ‘rents work for the UN or whatever, and the little girl gets to chill in the ‘Brook. Her nanny calls the BSC after Kristy spams her with flyers, and hires Mary Anne as a companion. Is Victoria spoiled? Bitchy? Stuck up? Or just a sad, lonely little girl? Blah. Oh, and the ending? Doesn’t really exist. Just kind of putters out like a dying car.

Subplot: Sharon uses Mary Anne as a lower calorie Dawn substitute! Fun!


  1. “Playing football is bad enough. Playing with Logan is downright frightening. He happens to be on the Stoneybrook Middle School football team, and he throws extremely hard.” He’s playing with a bunch of kids, [heh.] so how hard do you think he’s really throwing. Plus, he’s 13, not Peyton Manning or Tom Brady. Suck it up. Just say you don’t like playing.

  2. ”Dawn and I were double Yentes.” You gotta love how ANM was referencing things she grew up with. Sure, Fiddler is a classic, but your average 13-year-old hasn’t seen it enough to know the characters’ names.

  3. Heh, “an obscure condition called Spier’s Tears.” Careful, it’s contagious!

  4. ”Sharon can be a little absentminded. [You know where this is going…] In our house, it’s not unusual to find the tennis balls in the dishwasher, or her credit cards in the laundry detergent box.” Maybe Sharon has a rare condition, Makes-no-fucking-sensitis.

  5. Claudia, before she had to go back to seventh grade, thought that Alice in Wonderland referred not to a book title, but to a person, Alison Wonderland. DUMBASS!!!!!!!

  6. Okay, my Jewish friends, I have a question: Is this right? “they became Bat Mitzvahs together.” It sounds off.

  7. Oh, yeah, I love how once Abby joins, it’s okay to commute into NYC, but before, it’s crazy unthinkable.

  8. This has nothing to do with the book: I have a snow day from work today!!!!

  9. Richard Spier now works for a big fancy law firm and travels a lot, which makes M.A. sad…aw.

  10. Say it out loud. It’s terrible, and no way would I have gotten this horrible joke when I was 10. “Mom said the parents were both wearing Georgie O’Mani or something, but it looked like a normal suit and dress to me.” So bad!

  11. Mary Anne gets to ride in limos a lot in this book. She feels cool.

  12. Whenever there’s a particularly attractive mother, she could be a model. What’s up with ANM’s model obsession?

  13. Heh, more Laura Ashley!

  14. Oh, there’s a lame misunderstanding about M.A.’s last name…The nanny thinks it’s Mistu. LAME!!!

  15. I hate when they’re all “ew, gross” when Sharon (or Dawn, for that matter) mentions a good veggie dish, i.e. Tofu-Leek with Ginger casserole. Sounds fairly tasty.

  16. Mrs. Porter has a witchy granddaughter named Druscilla. And Spike’s wearing that blue sweater and having sex with Buffy and…oh, sorry, wrong fictional universe.

  17. There are lots of lame jokes about war with England.

  18. Everybody’s going to Mary Anne’s for Thanksgiving. Yay.

  19. Ah, nothing protects you from cold New England weather like a cotton sweater. Dumbasses.

  20. I have a hard time believing any mall with a Friendly’s also has Bountiful Wellness Macrobiotic Restaurant.

  21. ANM mentions both cell phones and email. Surreal. I always picture every BSC book firmly in 1988, no matter what year it was actually written.

  22. There’s this whole thing about Jessi trying to convincer her dad to become an actor. Huh?

  23. ”Stacey looked very…well, Stacey. She was wearing a black baseball cap, black sunglasses, and a sleek, black, ankle-length coat with sharply padded shoulders.” Wow.

  24. Oh, yeah, Kristy, Stacey, M.A. and the nanny take Victoria to NYC for an afternoon. Yet they always act like New York is sooooooooooo far away.

  25. Richard made slides from his business trip to Milwaukee. ‘nuff said.

I can't find a good pic online, but Mary Anne's coat on the cover is adorable...

Oh, someone asked how to get in touch with me about librarianing, as a profession. And I’m thinking about the best way to do that…I’ll get back to you.


PoBaL said...

Stacey's in the trench coat mafia. It's the influence of those "grunge" friends of her boyfriend, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

No, actually "they bacame Bat Mitvahs together" is correct. most people dont get that one "becomes" a bat mitzvah and does not "have" a bat mitzvah

Tiff said...

Sweet, thanks for that...

Anonymous said...

I'm glad I never read any past when Abby first came.

Anonymous said...

Stacey's jacket had sharply padded shoulders? Now THAT is sophistication!

Margie said...

Stacey sounds like she should be in the Matrix.

Ashley said...

Hey Tiff, any time you need a cover scan, check out my gallery at www.dibbly-fresh.com. I have a plethora of them scanned.

(And the cover for this book is here. :D )

Anonymous said...

I totally agree about always picturing the BSC in the 80s regardless of publication. It kind of fits in with their time warp, anyway.

Kay said...

I'm ashamed to admit I have vivid memories of this book. Like when the father is upset that the kid has learned "street argot" and Kristy or Mary Anne or someone doesn't know what that means...and David Michael keeps saying "chomming" because English accents are just so great, I guess. Why does the nanny think Mary Anne's last name is Mistu, though?

Anonymous said...

Oh LORD you all should check out some of the fan fiction here...the BSC stuff is pretty lame, but any SVH aficionados will know exactly how great some of these are!


Anonymous said...

I have to make a case for you to please do a post on Mary Anne Misses Logan. You have their initial get together and their break up already reviewed, but I always loved MAML because of how stupid Cokie Roberts was. Pleeeeeease?

PoBaL said...

because of how stupid Cokie Roberts was

This is totally hilarious if you forget that she's MA's nemesis and are only thinking of the newscaster.

Stephanie said...

i actually just bought this book last weekend. (50 cents at my local library) and, yeah ... the later books are, well, horrible. and you're right about there being no ending- it just kind of fizzles. in the earlier books, there would have been a heartfelt scene where Victoria talked to her parents and they didn't realize how much they hurt her and everyone would be all smiles. and it was cheesy and cliched, but damnit, we loved it! and in this one, it was just ... over.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, what is it with the Laura Ashley?

But because of this, I thought it must be the bomb. When I went off to college, I tracked down a Laura Ashley store and expected to be wowed.

Um, no. There was not one thing in the store I would consider wearing. Or owning.

I bet Martin's entire house is done in Laura Ashley. Floral prints galore.

Anonymous said...

Arg, I meant Cokie Mason. I always confuse the two. Seriously, I do.

Anonymous said...

the only thing worse than the actual BSC books are the fanfics! I admit that i do like a good fan fic now and then, but Jeebus! The BSC ones are terrible! If you feel like ripping a few of those apart... www.fanfiction.net

Anonymous said...

Tiff, darlin, you need to review the Babysitter's Club Movie. Biggest catastrophe ever.

The Crane Wife said...

I never read past when Abby joined either, and somehow I don't think I missed much. To hear them talk about email would have made my head implode.

Oh, and after your last post, I've become obsessed with brotherhood 2.0. So funny!

Anonymous said...

Does anybody remember the BSC "TV series," that was shown sporadically on a few channels? I remember because I bought a few VHS tapes of it from the book club order forms when I was in first grade. I bought "Stacey's Big Break," where Stacey makes a half-assed attempt to become a model but she's too fat (shocking!). I only have vague memories of a few other episodes. If you thought the BSC movie was bad, you have not seen these! Please review them if you've seen them Tiff.

Alyze said...

Brilliant. You are brilliant! I have just caught up on it all, I haven't accomplished a single thing at work for about 2 hours. I've even been holding all phone calls. Just genius! I'm dying!!!

Anonymous said...

I always picture every BSC book firmly in 1988, no matter what year it was actually written.

LOL! Me too. I think that's why people should truly avoid making their books too firmly entrenched in any particular time period...unless you're absolutely, 100% sure you're not going to continue the story at a later date. Because, then, it looks just plain stupid...then again, continuity is not really a major concern in the BSC world :-/

Anonymous said...

I remember the BSC TV series. I have the VHS I don't remember but Dawn wants some guy and he wants Mary Ann. The Mary Ann on TV is fug

Michelle said...

I was just thinking--does anyone remember how in the "Little Sister" books contractions were never used? When I was a kid I went through all of them trying to find one and could only find one use of one. Please don't tell me I'm crazy...

Veronica said...

Hey Michelle! Either you're not crazy, or both of us are crazy, because I remember the BSLS books without contractions, too. It always bugged me how Karen would say something like "Do not worry, David Michael, I will not eat your cookies," instead of "Don't worry, David Michael, I won't eat your cookies." (Or whatever) It really never made sense to me.

Anyway. Glad you're back, Tiff! And hooray for snow days. I remember reading this book when it first came out. It was in my clinging onto the BSC even though I had outgrown the books a long time ago phase. I've never really liked this one, but I enjoyed your commentary, as usual. Looking forward to the next one!!

Anonymous said...

Re: Stacey's outfit - what the eff? A black cap and sunglasses. Did she take a job as a security guard?

Sara said...

Stacey's outfit sounds like she's auditioning to be a flasher. Yikes.

Anonymous said...

god, i'm so glad i didn't read past abby, i probably would if i hadn't outgrown them by then. the only one i ever read with her in it was one where some girl died, and they like made some bench for her or something. it sucked. hahaha i totally forgot cokie roberts existed. even as a kid, i was like :what's with this chick's name??"

- amber

Anonymous said...

Why would Ann M. Martin mention shoulder pads and email and cell phones in the same book? She's insane.

Anonymous said...

Re: Bat Mitzvah.... Way to drop the ball, ghost writers. I like math, so here comes equations.

Male = BAR Mitzvah = 13

Female = BAT Mitzvah = 12

Sooo... Why did Dumb Abby and Slightly-More-Diverse-and-Interesting Anna wait an extra year?

Ann, who was wearing a neon orange off-the-shoulder oversize sweater, neon green tights, a funky necklace made from discarded hypodermic needles, vials of crack as earrings, and tissue boxes for shoes: "Let's put in a Jewish girl!"

Ghost writer, who was wearing bright pink tights and a skintight leotard under a freshly distant Laura Ashley dress (even though he's a boy) and super-cool sophisticated clunky high-heel boots with scrunched down bright yellow socks, earrings Caludia (yes, intentional misspelling. I can't look at her name without thinking that way anymore. Thank you, SS11) made him out of those super neat colored water balloons you get out of those grown-up machines in the gas station bathroom (ew it has sanitary napkins in it, ick!) and a leather collar that says "SLAVE" on it (he likes to show support for Jessi's (who's black) family's past oppression. It's a form of solidarity. The BSC is practically famous for that!); anyway, he looked super cute and sophisticated, especially with those super sophisticated super-high heels he was wearing with cool fishnet stockings: "Ok, but I'm not Jewish and I'm only gonna half-ass the research...."

Ann: *Shrugs her shoulders as if to say "No problem." I told you she was cool. Now on to random blah-blah about everyone's families or whatever...*

Oookayyy... I have NO idea where all that came from. You've fried my brain with nostalgia.

Side note regarding another post with a cool clip of superhotty Zach Braff: He was in a CBS Schoolbreak thing where he played a boy who masqueraded as a girl to be a chambermaid or something. I remember something about him wanting to be a "chambermale." I guess the place wouldn't hire a boy or something. I vaguely remember this. Saw it on YouTube or someplace similar...

Verification word: tutoxd
Sounds like what Caludia wears when she can only find half of her "Live from WSTO" tuxedo and borrows Jessi's tutu..

Angela said...

Ah! I have an eerily clear memory of this one. Especially because they went on and on about how the Brits pronounced "schedule," and I had some British friends who I was certain didn't pronounce it like that (though I'd never actually heard them say it) and got soooo mad at chez Ann M. for getting the facts wrong. I was a stubborn little bitch back then, too!

Kristin said...

nope, the "becoming bat mitzvahs together" is right, despite sounding totally weird!

verification word: kitermi. sounds like something that poor Hunter kid would say because he can never seem to find enough Claritin to dry up his freakin' sinuses.

metamorphstorm said...

It bugs me that like...one time in the whole over-one-hundred-books series, Mary Anne's name is pronounced for us. "Spear." I guess it makes the "Spier's Tears" joke work, but really? It should be SPY-ER. That's how it looks and how I'm always going to say it, so there! Heh...sorry...too much sugar for me...plus it's 2:30 A.M. :D

Ann M. also had her ghostwriters (was it not always Peter Lerangis?) referencing old stuff way too much. I was born early 90s and still have no clue when 1988 books reference Fiddler on the Roof or I Love Lucy, and honestly it's talked about so much, I don't care to actually do the research. :p