For girls who grew up in the late 1980s to early 90s (wow, two decades ago!), “The Baby-sitters Club” books by Ann M. Martin were ubiquitous. But since they went out of print in 2000, younger girls have missed out on the baby-sitting adventures of Kristy, Mary Anne, Claudia, and Stacey. That's no longer: According to The New York Times, Scholastic, the books' publisher, has decided to revive the series for a new generation.
First up, in April, a brand new prequel, "The Summer Before" (written by Ann), will be released and then there will be three more reissues of the original books later on. To keep everything up-to-date, Scholastic is updating references to technology and fashion (when the "Sweet Valley High" series was reissued in 2008, its publisher also took a similar approach). We doubt many girls would even know what Walkmans or cassette tapes are (kids, there were days before iPods), and getting a perm is, like, so last millennium. But that’s it — they're still going to be kid-friendly, family-friendly stories appropriate for girls even younger than the books' middle school-age protagonists.
I was in elementary school when I started reading “The Baby-sitters Club” books, and reading about the seventh-and-eighth-graders gave me something to aspire to. When I started baby-sitting, I totally contemplated making activity kits with games and art supplies to bring along with me. I learned from Mary Anne’s mistake and never invited any of my friends over while I was working. Claudia, the artistic one who always wore rad red and black clothes, was always my favorite, followed closely by Stacey, the sophisticated, fashionable city girl from New York.
Did you read “The Baby-sitters Club” books growing up? Who was your favorite member? Are you excited for the books to be re-issued? If you missed them the first time around, will you check out the new versions?