January 5th, 2010 by Karen
Recently, it was announced that a new Baby-Sitters Club prequel is in the works. My response: throw hands up in the air, do a little happy dance, get kind of dizzy, sit down.
I do happen to work at Scholastic, which is the company that publishes the BSC books. But my joy at this news has nothing to do with that. I’m not involved in the editing or publishing of the books at all. But I kind of wish I were, because as a kid, I was absolutely devoted to Ann M. Martin’s series about a group of middle school friends who start their own baby-sitting business. I’d order a new installment every month through those book club fliers that come to your school. And when we stopped getting those fliers, I systematically went through every BSC book in my local library — and my best friend’s collection.
My BFF and I weren’t the only two girls who enjoyed escaping into the series. As you can see from her zombiefication of the books, Nancy was also a huge fan. Basically every female who’s around our age (which is to say, ancient) has fond memories of the BSC books.
And I know they’re still somewhat popular today, although Scholastic stopped printing new copies a long time ago. That’s why in addition to the new prequel, Scholastic will also be reissuing the first five books in the series — so that they’re more easily accessible again.
At the same time, they’re also making some small changes to update the setting from the 1980s to today, like saying “headphones” instead of “cassette player” and “expensive hairstyle” instead of “perm.” Do you guys even know what a cassette player is? That actually brings up an interesting question — well, interesting to me anyway, and I’m the one writing this, so too bad for you:
As the target audience for the reissued books, how do you feel about these kinds of changes? Do you think they’re necessary? Is it harder for you to get into a book if it seems like the technology and fashions are outdated? Or does it not matter to your enjoyment of the story? Leave me a comment with your take on this issue. I’m really curious to hear your opinion!
And if you’re already a fan of the series, leave a comment telling me your favorite baby-sitter and/or your favorite book. (In case you were wondering, mine are Stacey and Book #13: Good-bye Stacey, Goodbye.)
And, of course, keep an eye out for the BSC prequel and the first two reissued books in April!
NOTE: Nancy and I both work at Scholastic, but all the information for this blog post came from a recent New York Times article. Well, and from my childhood recollections — obviously not as reputable of a source as The Times…