Best Babysitters Ever by Caroline Cala

Published by HMH Books for Young Readers

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Summary:  When Malia stumbles across an old copy of the first Babysitters Club book (Kristy’s Great Idea), she’s inspired to start her own club with her two best friends Dot and Bree.  The three girls want to have an amazing joint 13th birthday party, and they figure the club will get them the money to fund it.  Things don’t turn out quite the way they did in the Ann M. Martin books: the girls have no experience with kids, the children can be bratty, and worst of all, Malia’s overachieving older sister Chelsea decides to start her own child care service, putting the younger girls out of business.  Malia, Dot, and Bree, however, are a force to be reckoned with, and when they combine their talents, they figure out a way to turn the tables on Chelsea. By the end of the story, they’re ready to expand, a topic that will undoubtedly be covered in book 2 of the series. 272 pages; grades 4-7.

Pros:  Fans of Dork Diaries will enjoy this somewhat snarky send-up of the original Babysitters Club.  Malia, Bree, and Dot have their struggles, but grow and change enough over the course of the story that readers will be rooting for them by the end.

Cons:  As a diehard fan of the original BSC, I almost gave up on this book about halfway through because of my initial dislike of the three main characters.  I’m glad I stuck it out, though, as they really redeemed themselves by the end. 

If you would like to buy this book on Amazon, click here.

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