Best Babysitters Ever (Best Babysitters Ever, #1)
A funny new middle grade series about three 12-year-old best friends who start a babysitting club in their small California town. Perfect for fans of series like Whatever After and the Dork Diaries. Once upon a time, a girl named Kristy Thomas had a great idea: to form The Baby-Sitters Club with her best friends. And now twelve-year-old Malia Twiggs has had a great idea too. Technically, she had Kristy’s idea. (And technically, little kids seem gross and annoying, but a paycheck is a paycheck). After a little convincing, Malia and her friends Dot and Bree start a babysitting club to earn funds for an epic birthday bash. But babysitting definitely isn’t what they thought it would be.   Three friends. No parents. Unlimited snacks. And, okay, occasionally watching other people’s children. What could possibly go wrong?

Best Babysitters Ever (Best Babysitters Ever, #1) Details

TitleBest Babysitters Ever (Best Babysitters Ever, #1)
Author
ReleaseFeb 5th, 2019
PublisherHMH Books for Young Readers
ISBN-139781328850898
Rating
GenreChildrens, Middle Grade, Humor, Chapter Books, Fiction

Best Babysitters Ever (Best Babysitters Ever, #1) Review

  • Ms. Yingling
    January 1, 1970
    E ARC provided by NetgalleyMalia finds a battered copy of a Baby-Sitters Club book in a giveaway pile, and decides to put the idea into action with her best friends Bree and Dot because "seventh grade was turning out to be all kinds of meh" (from E ARC). She and her friends don't have money to buy anything at the mall, and her long time crush still doesn't know she exists. Some of the people who go to her school are mind-bogglingly rich, and throw epic birthday parties, and she's hoping that if E ARC provided by NetgalleyMalia finds a battered copy of a Baby-Sitters Club book in a giveaway pile, and decides to put the idea into action with her best friends Bree and Dot because "seventh grade was turning out to be all kinds of meh" (from E ARC). She and her friends don't have money to buy anything at the mall, and her long time crush still doesn't know she exists. Some of the people who go to her school are mind-bogglingly rich, and throw epic birthday parties, and she's hoping that if she can put together such a party, her life will improve. Malia has two supportive parents, but her older sister is much more successful than Malia feels she is. Bree has a complicated step-family, and often feels lost in the shuffle. Dot has a hippie-dippie mother who doesn't let her wear deodorant and has a cupboard full of "hemp flakes (scary), cashew spirulina algae balls (so scary),[and] sugar-free, vegan peanut butter cookies", and is counting the days until she can move to New York and live her own entrepreneurial life while wearing all black. They think Malia's idea has some merit, so set up their company, put something on the PTA list-serv, and sit back to wait for the calls to come in. They get one job that pays quite a bit, but they blow all of their money at the mall. They have another job lined up, though, so look forward to saving for their party. When they show up, however, they are met at the door by Malia's sister Chelsea and the bad news that she has set up a rival company, Seaside Sitters, and has stolen their jobs! It doesn't help that the website Bree has set up is poorly done, but the girls regroup and take any job they can get, from watering plants to feeding cats. Eventually, Chelsea becomes evil enough that the girls feel they need to retaliate, and put together footage of the Seaside Sitters being less than exemplary caretakers. Even though they've missed the chance for an epic pizza party, they still manage to have a birthday party, and their 7th grade year starts to look up. Strengths: Like Mancusi's Princesses, Inc., this is the sort of light, amusing book I would have adored (and purchased for myself in paperback) when I was in middle school. I love that the starting place is the Baby-Sitters Club, which readers at my school know about because of the Raina Telgemeier graphic novel. The characters are all interestingly flawed but well-meaning, and encompass so many of the characteristics of tween girls. It's also great that the parents are present and supportive, with the exception of Dot's dad, who is realistically not in the picture. This just made my day and restored my faith in middle grade literature!Weaknesses: While the reason for some of the girls to be very wealthy and others to be on the struggling side makes sense, I still had trouble believing that anyone would pay "stacks of twenties" for tween babysitters. Or hire three of them to watch over thirty children at a wedding. And do tweens still go to the mall? I thought the problem was that NO ONE went to the mall, which is why they are all closing down. I enjoyed the retro feel, but worry that this might not resonate with my students. What I really think: Definitely purchasing and using to wean readers off of Babymouse and Dork Diaries.
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  • Book Him Danno
    January 1, 1970
    My Girls loved this story and plan to have a review added Further out. Close to the release date.https://bookhimdanno.blogspot.com/Thank you to Netgalley and the Publisher for the Advance Copy for my honest opinion
  • Wendi Lee
    January 1, 1970
    Malia, Bree, and Dot have always had a joint birthday party, but this year they’re thinking big! Their other classmates have parties with exotic animals and famous singers. They want something just as memorable. So when Malia finds an old copy of Ann Martin’s The Babysitters’ Club, she establishes her own babysitting club. It doesn’t matter if she and her friends don’t really like little kids, right?I enjoyed this book, which is a cute homage to the series that was my first bookish fandom (I eve Malia, Bree, and Dot have always had a joint birthday party, but this year they’re thinking big! Their other classmates have parties with exotic animals and famous singers. They want something just as memorable. So when Malia finds an old copy of Ann Martin’s The Babysitters’ Club, she establishes her own babysitting club. It doesn’t matter if she and her friends don’t really like little kids, right?I enjoyed this book, which is a cute homage to the series that was my first bookish fandom (I even wrote a fan letter to Ann M. Martin- my first and only fan letter). All three girls were quirky individuals, and glitter and cat obsessed Bree reminded me of myself at that age. The sabotage by Malia’s older sister did seem a little over the top, but it wasn’t out of place here. It also reminded me of a plot from one of the original Babysitters’ Club books. Best of all, the girls learn an important lesson about friendship, and their own strengths and weaknesses. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an arc.
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  • Laurie
    January 1, 1970
    What would you do if you found an old book called The Babysitters Club? Read it? Sure! Create your own Babysitters Club? Why not? That is exactly what twelve-year-olds Malia, Dot, and Bree do. Babysitting is easy-peasy, right? They soon learn that taking care of little ones is not quite all its cracked up to be. Despite the challenges, they are determined to make money so that they can throw the epic birthday bash. But how will they make money when Malia's older sister steals her idea and their What would you do if you found an old book called The Babysitters Club? Read it? Sure! Create your own Babysitters Club? Why not? That is exactly what twelve-year-olds Malia, Dot, and Bree do. Babysitting is easy-peasy, right? They soon learn that taking care of little ones is not quite all its cracked up to be. Despite the challenges, they are determined to make money so that they can throw the epic birthday bash. But how will they make money when Malia's older sister steals her idea and their customers? The girls have to come up with a way to find new customers and/or find a way to sabotage her sister's new babysitting service. Will the girls rebound from their failed business? Will their friendship make it through these troubled times? Will they to throw the birthday party of the year or will they even be speaking to each other in time for the party? Read this fun story of family and friendship to find out what happens!I loved this story because it shows how three completely different personalities can be best friends and work together through tough times. It shows how friends and families can go through ups and downs and still be there for each other - no matter what. My favorite character in the whole book is Aloysius! You have to read this amazing book just to get to know him! Don't miss it!Follow me:Blog - Blazer Tales - https://blazertales.com/Facebook - Laurie’s Library Place - https://www.facebook.com/LauriesLibra...Instagram - laurieslibrary - https://www.instagram.com/laurieslibr...Twitter - @laurieevans27 https://twitter.com/laurieevans27?lan...Goodreads - Laurie Purser - https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/1...Pinterest - https://www.pinterest.com/auburngirl2...YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCulD...
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  • Katie Fitzgerald
    January 1, 1970
    I requested this ARC mostly because of my own feelings of nostalgia for the original Baby-sitters Club series, and it was fun to see the ways this story paralleled and parodied the stories I enjoyed from that series back in the 1990s. While I'm not sure I'm ready to call '90s literature "vintage," it was interesting to look at the books I grew up with through a more contemporary lens. That said, I didn't particularly like any of the characters in this book. They all felt like caricatures of cert I requested this ARC mostly because of my own feelings of nostalgia for the original Baby-sitters Club series, and it was fun to see the ways this story paralleled and parodied the stories I enjoyed from that series back in the 1990s. While I'm not sure I'm ready to call '90s literature "vintage," it was interesting to look at the books I grew up with through a more contemporary lens. That said, I didn't particularly like any of the characters in this book. They all felt like caricatures of certain middle school stereotypes, and none of them were particularly sympathetic or interesting. I found Malia's insistence on being called Alia annoying, and the rivalry between her and her sister (and their parents' take on that relationship) completely implausible. It was also problematic (for me, as a Catholic mom, anyway) that the only morality in the book is from a "new age" point of view, delivered by Dot's mother. I also questioned whether the Baby-sitters Club re-releases are popular enough with 2019 middle grade audiences that they would really appreciate the references to the series, and I was surprised not to see Ann M. Martin given any recognition in the Acknowledgments. Surely she should have been given some thanks for inspiring this new tale. For better or for worse, I do think the target audience will love all the drama and humor in this book, even if the writing is not of the highest literary quality. It wasn't a favorite for me, but if I worked in a library, I'd probably still order it.
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  • Ami Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    "Once upon a time, a girl named Kristy Thomas had a great idea: to form The Baby-Sitters Club with her best friends. And now twelve-year-old Malia Twiggs has had a great idea too. Technically, she had Kristy’s idea. (And technically, little kids seem gross and annoying, but a paycheck is a paycheck). After a little convincing, Malia and her friends Dot and Bree start a babysitting club to earn funds for an epic birthday bash. But babysitting definitely isn’t what they thought it would be. Three "Once upon a time, a girl named Kristy Thomas had a great idea: to form The Baby-Sitters Club with her best friends. And now twelve-year-old Malia Twiggs has had a great idea too. Technically, she had Kristy’s idea. (And technically, little kids seem gross and annoying, but a paycheck is a paycheck). After a little convincing, Malia and her friends Dot and Bree start a babysitting club to earn funds for an epic birthday bash. But babysitting definitely isn’t what they thought it would be. Three friends. No parents. Unlimited snacks. And, okay, occasionally watching other people’s children. What could possibly go wrong?"Based loosely around the babysitters club this book brought back a little bit of my childhood. I really enjoyed reading an easy, cosy read! The three main characters were instantly likeable and i think, easy for young girls to relate to. During the book they have to each overcome their own problems that tests their friendship to the brink. I can see this book being a hit with younger girls before they hit their teenage years. I will definitely recommend to the girls i teach!
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  • Vanessa (splitreads)
    January 1, 1970
    A quirky book for younger readers who enjoy drama, fiasco, and revenge. The writing and characters, to me, lacked depth, but I could see how this could be fun for others. Some situations felt a bit too unbelievable to me (particularly the relationship between Chelsea and Malia, three 12-year-olds babysitting 33 kids, Drake performing in this rich town, and how forgotten Bria felt). I didn't really feel I got to know the three girls, but I don't think I'll want to read the next book in the series A quirky book for younger readers who enjoy drama, fiasco, and revenge. The writing and characters, to me, lacked depth, but I could see how this could be fun for others. Some situations felt a bit too unbelievable to me (particularly the relationship between Chelsea and Malia, three 12-year-olds babysitting 33 kids, Drake performing in this rich town, and how forgotten Bria felt). I didn't really feel I got to know the three girls, but I don't think I'll want to read the next book in the series to learn more either.
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  • Lana
    January 1, 1970
    This is a cute, girly middle grade book about 3 friends, Malia, Dot, and Bree who start a babysitting business to save money for a party they are planning. The business doesn’t exactly go the way they envisioned it. The story wasn’t exactly what I was hoping for but it was still entertaining and I think younger middle grade readers would enjoy it as well. Thank you to HMH Books for young readers and NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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  • Kim
    January 1, 1970
    I am most definitely well past the age of the intended audience for this book ....but when I see a potential gift on Goodreads for one of the kids in my life ...I take a shot at winning.However if I win,as I did in this case ...I read to screen for appropriate content . This will be a future present for my goddaughter . It's a very cute ,clean story ,good for ages 10 -12 . I liked the characters and the lessons they learned.Some topics covered are friendship , responsibility, fitting in ,self wo I am most definitely well past the age of the intended audience for this book ....but when I see a potential gift on Goodreads for one of the kids in my life ...I take a shot at winning.However if I win,as I did in this case ...I read to screen for appropriate content . This will be a future present for my goddaughter . It's a very cute ,clean story ,good for ages 10 -12 . I liked the characters and the lessons they learned.Some topics covered are friendship , responsibility, fitting in ,self worth and having a big crush on a boy . The plot is very imaginative and the freedom the girls have in where they go daily seemingly without permission or constant supervision and how they start their business without parental consent reminds me of simpler days when you just had to be home by a certain time and were trusted and expected to behave yourself properly or risk grounding or losing privileges. Yet they are not acting foolishly or being troublemakers.To be honest not having my own tweens or teens I am not sure this is a common phenomenon these days. Although I do realise good children's novels contain some degree of artistic license so the reader can daydream they are the character and escape into the story. Adults like escapism in stories too. ..I was especially happy to win this for my goddaughter because the irony is ....the idea for the babysitters club is suppose to come from the book series of the same name.In real life i use to purchase the Babysitter Club books for my cousin when she was young ....and now her daughter will read a work inspired by it .I found that a terrific coincidence....And if my goddaughter the avid chapter book reader enjoys it ( and I'm sure she will ) ....I'll be glad to purchase more of the series for her .
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  • Kim
    January 1, 1970
    Bad Babysitters follows three characters, Malia, Bree, and Dot as they try their hands at babysitting jobs. The story alternates between all three girls, but Malia is clearly the "main" character. I liked all three girls fairly well, and they all felt distinct. I just wish that we had a bit more time with Bree and Dot because they didn't feel as integral to the story. In most books this wouldn't be a big deal, but this story focuses on all three girls and their relationships with each other. Mal Bad Babysitters follows three characters, Malia, Bree, and Dot as they try their hands at babysitting jobs. The story alternates between all three girls, but Malia is clearly the "main" character. I liked all three girls fairly well, and they all felt distinct. I just wish that we had a bit more time with Bree and Dot because they didn't feel as integral to the story. In most books this wouldn't be a big deal, but this story focuses on all three girls and their relationships with each other. Malia was the only one that felt really fleshed out. The story was cute. At first, I thought it was supposed to be a kind of spin-off of The Babysitters Club, but it isn't. Malia just sees a copy of the first book and suggests that her friends start a babysitting club with her. That's the only connection to the original series. I didn't read The Babysitters Club a lot as a kid, but I still appreciated little references that were made. While this book was a cute, fast read, there wasn't really a lot of babysitting in it. Pretty early into the story, Malia's sister snipes the babysitting idea and makes it her own. This leaves Malia and her friends to work on a revenge plot of some kind, and that really takes up most of the story. I think the book would have benefited from being longer, with a bit more babysitting at the end. Throughout the story, one of the girls takes care of cats for someone, and another girl hangs out with an older woman and helps with her plants. At the end, it would have been nice if the girls got together to talk about these differing experiences, and decide if babysitting is really something they want to pursue. Cute, quick story that kids will have fun with.
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  • Jill Jemmett
    January 1, 1970
    This is a great book about friendship.Malia gets the idea to create a babysitting club after reading Kristy’s Great Idea, which is the first book in the Baby-Sitters Club series. I loved that series when I was growing up! This is a great way to update the story for today’s young readers. Even though there are new graphic novel versions of the Baby-Sitters Club books, some of the things in the books are still dated. This story had modern characters, complete with cell phones!The story was fast pa This is a great book about friendship.Malia gets the idea to create a babysitting club after reading Kristy’s Great Idea, which is the first book in the Baby-Sitters Club series. I loved that series when I was growing up! This is a great way to update the story for today’s young readers. Even though there are new graphic novel versions of the Baby-Sitters Club books, some of the things in the books are still dated. This story had modern characters, complete with cell phones!The story was fast paced. There were a lot of similarities between the characters in this book and the ones from the Babysitters club. For instance, Bree has a large blended family, just like Kristy in the Babysitters club. Malia has an annoying older sister just like Claudia. However, some of the characters were kind of extreme and annoying. Bree was emotional and cried a lot. She was also obsessed with glitter and Taylor Swift. She seemed very over the top most of the time.I’m curious to see what happens next in this series, and to see how much it will be like the Baby-Sitters Club.I received a copy of this book from the publisher on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Kelly (purplebookstand)
    January 1, 1970
    Ok, so some may ask why a grown woman requested this book, so I’ll tell you!The Babysitters Club were my favourite books when I was younger. I had sooooo many of them that they dominated my bookshelf. So when I saw that this book was based on my childhood favourites, of course I was going to give it a go!With this being only a sampler, I obviously haven’t completed the whole book, but what I have read was great! The story so far introduces us to the three main girls who I assume will start this Ok, so some may ask why a grown woman requested this book, so I’ll tell you!The Babysitters Club were my favourite books when I was younger. I had sooooo many of them that they dominated my bookshelf. So when I saw that this book was based on my childhood favourites, of course I was going to give it a go!With this being only a sampler, I obviously haven’t completed the whole book, but what I have read was great! The story so far introduces us to the three main girls who I assume will start this new babysitters club. Malia (or Alia as she wants to be known!), Bree and Dot are 100% unqualified and don’t even really like kids, but as they say, they’re minor details! I think this book would engage young readers from the start, it’s punchy and interesting and draws you into their world from page one. I love the basis of this book and would definitely recommend it, my daughter would love it! Fours shiny stars from purplebookstand!
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  • Susie
    January 1, 1970
    I received an advanced copy of this book via NetGalley. This book could not decide what it wanted to be: a parody of the Babysitter's Club? A slapstick comedy? Realistic fiction? A farce? A friendship message? Maybe the problem for me was that it was trying to do too many things at once. For instance, I felt like it was aimed at upper elementary girls, but then why did it use vocabulary like "kickass" and "boobs?"At times it felt like it was trying to tell a real story, but then there were plot I received an advanced copy of this book via NetGalley. This book could not decide what it wanted to be: a parody of the Babysitter's Club? A slapstick comedy? Realistic fiction? A farce? A friendship message? Maybe the problem for me was that it was trying to do too many things at once. For instance, I felt like it was aimed at upper elementary girls, but then why did it use vocabulary like "kickass" and "boobs?"At times it felt like it was trying to tell a real story, but then there were plot points that were highly exaggerated. Some of the characters were caricatures while the book was trying to make serious points. At times the girls were portrayed as being empowered; the next minute they were doofuses. Would parents really pay babysitters with "stacks of twenties" and trust three 7th grade girls with 33 children? A small town would have enough geniuses for kindergarten Mensa?Perhaps later books will be more focused.
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  • Darla
    January 1, 1970
    Rounded up from 3.5 stars. This middle grade novel features three twelve-year-olds who want to throw a big bash when they turn thirteen. The challenge is paying for it. Malia finds an old book from the first Babysitter's Club series and a light bulb comes on. She convinces her friends Bree and Dot to join her in forming a new babysitter's club. Along the way there are many ups and downs which makes for an entertaining book. One favorite moment is when Bree makes a poster highlighting their first Rounded up from 3.5 stars. This middle grade novel features three twelve-year-olds who want to throw a big bash when they turn thirteen. The challenge is paying for it. Malia finds an old book from the first Babysitter's Club series and a light bulb comes on. She convinces her friends Bree and Dot to join her in forming a new babysitter's club. Along the way there are many ups and downs which makes for an entertaining book. One favorite moment is when Bree makes a poster highlighting their first names with huge glittered letters spelling out B for Bree, A for Alia(Malia is campaigning for a new version of her name) and D for Dot. Yes, it spells B-A-D. Girls in 5th grade and up will empathize with the trio and find some common ground. A fun read.A big thanks to Houghton Mifflin and NetGalley for an ARC of this new middle grade novel in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Michelle Kidwell
    January 1, 1970
    Best Babysitters Everby Caroline CalaHoughton Mifflin Harcourt Children's Book GroupHMH Books for Young ReadersChildren's FictionPub Date 05 Feb 2019I am reviewing Bad Babysitters: Best Babysitters ever through HMH Books for Young Readers and Netgalley:Three twelve year led best friends decide it is time to start a babysitting club in the small California town where they live. The idea comes from Kristy Thomas (from the Original Babysitters Club)Malia Twiggs thought little kids were gross but a 
Best Babysitters Ever
by Caroline Cala
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children's Book Group
HMH Books for Young Readers
Children's Fiction
Pub Date 05 Feb 2019
I am reviewing Bad Babysitters: Best Babysitters ever through HMH Books for Young Readers and Netgalley:
Three twelve year led best friends decide it is time to start a babysitting club in the small California town where they live. The idea comes from Kristy Thomas (from the Original Babysitters Club)
Malia Twiggs thought little kids were gross but a paycheck is a paycheck and after a little convincing they start the babysitting club in order to have the funds for an amazing birthday bash.
I give Best Babysitters Over five out of five stars!
Happy Reading!

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  • Sharon
    January 1, 1970
    4th&upIn an acknowledged tribute to & update of Ann M. Martin’s classic series, three friends decide that forming a babysitting club is the answer to all their problems- despite the fact that they have no experience at running a business, or aptitude towards children in general. Sibling rivalry, toddlers from Hades, and monetary mismanagements are just a few of the hilarious complications that arise. Fun, fast paced, and perfectly reflective of common tween angst, this will be a hit with 4th&upIn an acknowledged tribute to & update of Ann M. Martin’s classic series, three friends decide that forming a babysitting club is the answer to all their problems- despite the fact that they have no experience at running a business, or aptitude towards children in general. Sibling rivalry, toddlers from Hades, and monetary mismanagements are just a few of the hilarious complications that arise. Fun, fast paced, and perfectly reflective of common tween angst, this will be a hit with middle school readers.This ARC was provided by HMH Kids in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Alyssa
    January 1, 1970
    I read this as an E-Arc via NetGalley (thanks NetGalley!). BAD BABYSITTERS is a really fun book that I think a lot of my students will really enjoy. I like how the three POV characters are very distinct from one another and also unique -- the author does an amazing job with characterization in this story. There were moments in the book I didn't love (the reconciliation scene between the three friends, the family forgetting Bree on her birthday, the inequity between Malia and Chelsea) and some th I read this as an E-Arc via NetGalley (thanks NetGalley!). BAD BABYSITTERS is a really fun book that I think a lot of my students will really enjoy. I like how the three POV characters are very distinct from one another and also unique -- the author does an amazing job with characterization in this story. There were moments in the book I didn't love (the reconciliation scene between the three friends, the family forgetting Bree on her birthday, the inequity between Malia and Chelsea) and some things felt over the top. I thought Chelsea's character was too evil, like unrealistically mean, but maybe this will be addressed more in the sequel. Overall, this is a cute story with a wicked cute cover that my students will enjoy.
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  • Jensen
    January 1, 1970
    This book was SO much fun. I read it aloud to my 8 and 12 year old and they both loved it. It was hilarious. Reminiscent of Babysitter's Club, but funnier, since they are truly terrible babysitters. There are also great friendship, sibling, and family dynamics, in addition to the babysitting antics.
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  • Anita
    January 1, 1970
    I'm only half-way through with Bad Babysitters, but I can safely say that this is a book that I will buy, share, recommend. Quirky characters, sassy dialogue, friendship and sibling rivalry at its very best. A full review to come, but in the words of Nicolas Cage (Adam Samberg), Bad Babysitters deserves "high praise."
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  • WKPL Children's/YA Books
    January 1, 1970
    Miss Lori read this book and enjoyed watching the girls grow and learn about babysitting, starting their own business, true friendship, and how sometimes people do bad things and never get caught! Good book for 5th graders and up!
  • Meghan
    January 1, 1970
    I got this primarily because I love Caroline’s writing on CupofJo, but it was a fun, light read for a bus ride and I enjoyed all the Babysitters Club nostalgia!
  • Katie
    January 1, 1970
    As a huge fan of Caroline Cala's writing on cupofjo.com and the original BSC, I had been excited to read this one. It will surely be fun for tweens.
  • Mindi
    January 1, 1970
    It was cute, but everything needed to be developed a lot more. Like, it kind of felt like half a novel plot and development wise.
  • dearlittledeer
    January 1, 1970
    This book is pretty amazing. Recommended for grown-up BSC fans as well as actual kid/tween readers. Great voice, and so funny!
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