Babysitters on Board! (The Babysitters Club Special, #1)
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Babysitters on Board! (The Baby-Sitters Club Super Special #1)

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  2,957 ratings  ·  72 reviews
Publisher: Hippo Books Date of Publication: 1991 Binding: paperback Edition: Condition: Good Description: 059076618X
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Published August 16th 1991 by Scholastic Hippo (first published 1988)
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Ciara
this is the first of the super specials. i remember being so psyched about this book's release when i was a kid. it was extra thick & had chapters from the points of view of every club member, plus byron, mallory, & karen. the premise: mr. pike won a contest at work, & the prize was an all-expenses paid cruise for his entire family, plus three days at disney world. i bet whoever came up with the bright idea for the contest was kicking himself when mr. pike, father of eight, won. with...more
Robin
This book was way more boring than I remember it being, except for some intense lesbian subtext.

The BSC goes on a cruise with the Pikes and the Brewer-Thomases. Dawn gets dragged around by an overly pushy dude, and nobody finds anything wrong with it. Claudia has a stalker, and it's So Romantic (ugh). Kristy spends the whole cruise hanging around an old man, which makes me wonder where her parents were throughout this trip.

But the subtext, man. I admit that I was a naive kid. I didn't know whe...more
Alison
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rachel
So, my mom found a little paper from when I was in third grade upon which I wrote "My favorite book is Baby-Sitters on Board by Ann M. Martin. I like it because I feel like I'm really there." I decided to re-read it as research for a book I'm writing about third-grade-age kids (that's right, a book I'm writing!). It no longer seems like a masterwork of literature, but I could see where my third-grade self was coming from.

Some thoughts:

Not nearly enough Claudia outfits!

I enjoyed Kristy's friendsh...more
sj


I wanted to read this SO BADLY when it came out, but my library never got a copy, and I couldn't justify paying extra for it out of my allowance when I could have bought two other BSC novels for the same price.

So, this was the first time I've read this, even though I'd read other Super Specials when I was young.

I was a little creeped out by Claudia's secret admirer, and by the fact that 10 year old boys were allowed to just run around without supervision on an unfamiliar Caribbean island. Serio...more
Carey
I read all these books when I was a little girl and loved them. And even though it has been many years, I still remember the joy these stories gave me. Adventures of ordinary girls, with their own personalities. I could relate to each one in their own way. The lessons in getting through every day life gave hope and encouragement to a shy girl who was often teased as a girl. I could escape into one of the books and pretend I was in their group. I even wrote myself into a fanfiction or two back th...more
Maggie
This book is why I must go to Walt Disney World, take a cruise to Nassau, and fall in love with a mystery admirer/former child actor all while taking care of someone else's children. And you best believe I will be charging manicures to my room, or "cabin", Karen Brewer-styles!

Aaaand I can't believe I remember all that off the top of my head. Kathleen Kelly was right -- when you read a book as a child, it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does! (I a...more
Julie Decker
In the first Super Special book, the book changes narrators as all the babysitters go on a cruise with the Pike family. They won a trip, and Kristy's rich stepdad decided to pony up to bring everyone else in the books, so they all got to have a ball . . . except that every one of them had a mystery to solve or a story to tell.

These Super Specials didn't really work very well for me because everyone was handed some kind of "issue" that would be solved shallowly by the end, and one of their issues...more
Lisa
I'm embarrassed to admit that I cried. That was stupidly lovely. The Stacey and Mark story is my favourite.
Kristn
I felt guilty in Sunday School because I didn't pay attention to the lesson. I was too excited about going home to read this book.
Swankivy
I didn't much care for the Super-Specials when I was a kid because they kinda confused me with the shifting points of view. I also usually had a problem with the sort of contrived individual plots in which it seemed like the author was trying to give each narrator an individual conflict and silly resolution.

In this book the Pike family goes on vacation. Whenever the Pike family does anything, you know it's going to be full of hijinks, because there are eight children and some of them are pretty...more
Laura Hughes
Kristy’s entire extended family, the Pikes, and all of the Baby-sitters go on a cruise around the Bahamas and a three-day trip to Disney World together. I don’t want to think about how much that cost.
The format of the Super Specials is that each club member, plus several secondary characters such as the baby-sat, get to narrate a handful of chapters spread throughout the book, so that multiple plotlines and viewpoints can be explored. In general, this narrative experimentation produces disappoin...more
Jojo
Oh, nostalgia!

I used to obsessively read this book when I was the proper age for it. It was probably my second favorite book in the series, after the Super Special where they go to California. I always liked the Super Specials better than the regular books since they didn't focus as much on babysitting; when I was eleven, I wasn't fond of babysitting or children, but I did like wacky adventures, and the Super Specials had plenty of those.

Characters that annoyed me to no end in this book: Kristy,...more
Nancy
In which Watson shows up John Pike by going on the same cruise on a whim, Satan Karen is a megabrat who needs locked in a cage, K. Ron frets over a gift, is a slob, and chills with an old guy who I like to think of as Rudy from Survivor, and Mel-ry narrates for the first and only time as a sittee. Also, Caludia has a stalker but it's romantic, STFUDawn falls madly in LUV in minutes, MA chills with a lying bitch, and Stacey has The Diabetes. This Super Special is bizarre to me because Stace spend...more
April
Fantastic books for young girls getting into reading!! Great stories about friendship and life lessons. The characters deal with all sorts of situations and often find responsible solutions to problems.

I loved this series growing up and wanted to start my own babysitting business with friends. Great lessons in entrepreneurship for tweens.

The books may be dated with out references to modern technology but the story stands and lessons are still relevant.

Awesome books that girls will love! And the...more
Ashley
I mean, I pretty much had to bump this up to 4 stars just for plain old nostalgia's sake. I was OBSESSED with The Baby-Sitter's Club series when I was younger, and while it doesn't hold up THAT well to the test of time, I still love these little fluffy books so much. It's hysterical how you notice things as an adult now, especially Mary-Anne's total lesbian crush on a passenger on the cruise ship. Hilarious. (Also it blows my mind that Maggie is the same age as the Junior Baby-Sitters in this se...more
Carmen
When I was 9 it was a 5 star book.
Caro
Hahahah, okay this is obviously getting 4 stars for purely nostalgic reasons. This had to be the first book in my childhood that made me obsessed with the idea of cruises and vacationing with friends. Karen's little manicure that she charged to her father's account was like the highlight of my elementary school life back in the day! But even then, I remember finding Claudia's little stowaway stalker more creepy than adorable, but I guess they were all kids back then and it was all harmless. Haaa...more
Stephany
I have to rate this at the level it was written for, not as an adult. So, for this age/reading level, it is a great book. It's a bit outdated now (for instance, after their vacation, when they all started exchanging addresses. Addresses! Oh, the 90s.) but it was still enjoyable to read. I'll admit I was a bit bored by it, but I think if I was a 10-year-old, I wouldn't have been able to put it down.

In any event, it was fun to jump back into the BSC world!
Esther
I read probably close to 100 of these when I was a pre-teen. I always loved the "Super Special" because they were extra long. I always identified with Kristy (tom-boy and leader) Mary Anne (book reader, quiet, sweet) and Claudia (creative and artistic). Some of my early/beginning ideas about how to babysit and interact with children came from these books. :) I have liked many of Ann Maritn's other books and she has a couple of award winners too.
Abigail
My dad retired last year and in looking through his files he found my Silent Sustained Reading Record from when I was in his class.
I thought it was interesting to see what I was reading back when I was 13!

No rating on this, because I don't remember it. I used to be really into the Baby-Sitters Club books and then I suddenly wasn't and moved on to other series and genres.
Alex
Heck yes, I re-read this over the weekend for probably the hundredth time. I've been looking for this book for quite a few years now so I could read it again, and finally found it at Half Price Books for 50 cents!!!

They go to Disney World in this one, so it was quite timely for me to read right now. =)
Sarah
I adored this book when I was twelve or thirteen. In fact, it--and the rest of the series--motivated me to start my own one-woman babysitters club business that provided me with a nice chunk of change to take to college with me several years later.
Candice
I decided to step back into my childhood and re-read the first Babysitters Club book I ever read. Still so cute, even after 15 years. This particular book was my favorite of the series and probably will maintain that distinction.
Heather
Jan 28, 2008 Heather rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: young girls ready to start the battles of babysitting
I am embarrassed to admit reading all these. I am even more embarrassed to admit that I started a Babysitters club right after reading this. Unfortunately, or fortunately it never did pan out! Oh to be 10 again!!
Bullcitytaheel
I think I would have totally liked this book at the appropriate age. (4th-6th or 7th grade ish) At my age it was just too predictable and too much angst over stupid stuff.
Natasha
Easily my favourite book as a child. I read this book over and over until it fell apart, and now I am trying to hunt down this series for my daughter.
Rhiannon1220
The Super Special Editions for Baby Sitters club are special treats that allow you to know the main girls so much better through the reading.
Amanda Kay
I think this was the first BSC book I read. Someone let me borrow it. I remember I thought it was ok... but these book have to be so dated now!
Sarah Smith
I loved the series as a kid. I never read them in order because the library didn't have all of them. I think my favs were the Super Specials.
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Ann Matthews Martin was born on August 12, 1955. She grew up in Princeton, New Jersey, with her parents and her younger sister, Jane. After graduating from Smith College, Ann became a teacher and then an editor of children's books. She's now a full-time writer.

Ann gets the ideas for her books from many different places. Some are based on personal experiences, while others are based on childhood me...more
More about Ann M. Martin...
Kristy's Great Idea (The Baby-Sitters Club, #1) A Dog's Life: The Autobiography of a Stray A Corner of the Universe The Doll People (Doll People, #1) The Truth About Stacey (The Baby-Sitters Club, #3)

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