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Review: Hello, Mallory by Ann M. Martin

Hello, MalloryMallory Pike has always wanted to be a member of the Baby-sitters Club. The Baby-sitters are so much fun to be around, and so grown-up. Now the club members have invited Mallory to a meeting. This might be her big chance!

But the Baby-sitters don’t make it easy. First Claudia makes Mal feel like a baby on her first official baby-sitting job. Then they give her a written test – with questions nobody could answer!

Mallory’s beginning to think she doesn’t want to be part of the Baby-sitters Club. Maybe with her new friend Jessi she’ll start a club of her own…
It’s time to show those Baby-sitters what a couple of new girls can do.

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It’s been a while since I last read a BSC book. But I have to say, this one in particular left me a bit perplexed about some of the details. For example, Mallory states that she has brown hair and yet, on every book cover and in every movie/tv episode, she has red hair. Another thing that really got to me was exactly how unfair the girls were to Mallory about joining the club.

I remembered that they had given her an unfair test, that they didn’t even know the answers to. But what I hadn’t remembered was exactly how cold and judgmental they all were. For example, when Mallory tells them about watching all of her siblings when her parents rush Nicky off to the hospital, the girls blame his accident on Mallory. Nevermind the fact that he was just playing volleyball and his finger hit the ball wrong. Or the fact her father was standing right there. Somehow poor Mallory was expected to prevent this kind of accident. Really?

Also, I remembered that her first sitting experience with Claudia had been a disaster, but couldn’t recall the specifics. But in truth, I would hardly call it a bad experience. If any thing, Claudia sabotages the job at every step of the process. She chides Mallory for asking the kids what they would like for a snack, instead of telling them what they can have. When Mallory tries to remedy this by saying they can have apples, only to find out they don’t have any, Claudia acts like it’s the biggest mistake in the world. And don’t even get me started on how ironic and hypocritical it was to hear Claudia, the junk food queen, lecture about how you should only offer healthy snacks to kids.

And then, there’s the moment during Dawn’s chapter where Mallory all of a sudden begins speaking to Kristy while Kristy and Dawn are having a private phone conversation. As anyone who has read these books knows, the featured character speaks in first person throughout the books and the others in third. But all of a sudden there’s a “I asked” when it should have been “Dawn asked.” Surely this could have been caught within the decade from its first publishing in the 80’s to the updated version in the 90’s, right?

While I still hold fond memories of these books from my childhood, it’s books like this that leave me wondering what I ever saw in this series. Perhaps it was my lack of interest in poor Mallory as a character that I missed the obvious signs that the other girls were wrong. Or maybe I was too invested into the series to care. But as an adult, I wish it were possible to slap some sense into Kristy and the girls, because they definitely need it.

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Rating

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About Kristine

As an aspiring author, avid bookworm, fitness fanatic and dedicated mother, there just aren't enough hours in the day. I write or post about things I'm passionate about and spend my time trying to make the most of every day. Life may be a tough journey, but I have my ruby red slippers and am content on skipping along this yellow brick road until the end of the line.

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