Last year I started doing reviews of media related to The Baby-Sitters Club franchise. So far, there have only been three reviews, a Halloween review of the first book in the Super Mystery series, a review of the Christmas episode from the ’90s TV show, and a review of my favorite episode of the now sadly canceled Netflix series. It’s such a shame that the series was canceled as that is what led to me becoming a fan of this franchise in the first place. I loved the first season of that show so much that I dove in and checked out copies of the books, whether in original novel format or the graphic novel adaptions, which to this day is my favorite version of the BSC. Being a newer fan of this franchise means that I’m always on the lookout for material to absorb. Admittedly, the BSC Wiki isn’t the greatest resource but it did have a section on Halloween books, and well the first option I wanted to look at, a graphic novel adaption of Mary Anne’s Bad Luck Mystery isn’t coming out until December of this year.
Ugh, why are you waiting until December to release that book? The gorgeous cover screams autumn, flashlights in the hands of Mary Anne, Kristy, and Claudia as they walk through a graveyard with leaves falling to the ground and a black cat sitting atop a tombstone. It just screams that this book should have an October release. Just ugh but oh well, I am instead looking at a book from the first Mystery spinoff. Yes, there were two Mystery spinoffs. The Baby-Sitter Club Mysteries and the Super Mystery series. I looked at one of the books from that series last year.
The Super Mysteries typically seemed to include all the girls whereas the regular Mysteries played by similar rules to the main series and only focused on one sitter. This year however I’m doing two reviews one from the main series and one from the Mystery series focusing on BSC member, Dawn starting with The Ghost at Dawn’s House.
This book is a bit simple and does seem to fit with what I’ve seen of other versions of Dawn, she’s a bit jumpy and believes that there is a ghost hiding in her house. She thinks as she finds a secret passage in her house as she lives in a barn and believes there is a ghost as she keeps seeing weird things being left behind such as part of an ice cream cone and an Indian head nickel.
It also doesn’t help that she is hearing moaning and creaking coming from the walls near the secret passage as that again leads her to believe that there is a ghost. Ann M. Martin revealed that part of this book was inspired by Nancy Drew as she grew up loving Nancy Drew and ghost stories like two of her characters including Dawn. This book in particular was inspired by The Hidden Staircase.
Finding out something I enjoy was inspired by something is super cool. The way the story handles the idea of the ghost and how Dawn lets her imagination run wild when she thinks there is a ghost in her house is quite relatable. I will somewhat contradict this in a later review when I look at an episode of the 90s TV show but that is partly because of how the character of Dawn co-opted characteristics of another character whereas in this book with Dawn everything made sense for who she is.
The revelation of who the ghost is is rather interesting and does tie back into one of Dawn’s babysitting jobs but I don’t want to reveal too much as I think it’s kind of best to go into this story not knowing all the details.
I will admit there are a few chapters that seem as though they are sidetracking from the main plot of figuring out whether or not, the ghost exists but I do understand the purpose of them as this is first and foremost a Baby-Sitters Club book.
My Final Thoughts
Before reading this book and starting this event, Dawn was a member of the BSC I didn’t put too much stock into but this book does a good job of showing her strengths as a character being the health conscious adventurous California girl that just moved to Stoneybrook that took some time to warm up to the other BSC but became quick friends with Mary Anne. Join me next time as I continue my look at Dawn and Halloween-related material as I look at…
Dawn and The Halloween Mystery