this is the second of the absurd "reader's request" books featuring logan as narrator & primary protagonist. i think it's kind of weird that both the logan books came out so much earlier than the one shannon book. were babysitters club readers in the early 90s really that enamored by logan? even after mary anne broke up with him for turning into a controlling monster?
anyway, logan & mary anne are happily together in this book. happily, that is, save for mary anne's new obsession with hunthis is the second of the absurd "reader's request" books featuring logan as narrator & primary protagonist. i think it's kind of weird that both the logan books came out so much earlier than the one shannon book. were babysitters club readers in the early 90s really that enamored by logan? even after mary anne broke up with him for turning into a controlling monster?
anyway, logan & mary anne are happily together in this book. happily, that is, save for mary anne's new obsession with hunky boy pop singer nicky cash. nicky cash has a new album coming out soon, & mary anne of course wants to buy it for herself. he's also playing in stamford soon, but tickets have been sold out for ages. remember this.
okay, so, logan is still facing some teasing for being a boy babysitter from some of his football/track teammates. this book is kind of weird because it specifies that the worst of the bullies, king, is on the track team with logan, even though the last logan book had a happy ending in that logan made the track team while king did not. let's just ignore this little inconsistency. one morning, king is teasing logan when t-jam, a member of the completely lame-sounding middle school "gang" the badd boyz (seriously? & i thought "crips" was embarrassing), sticks up for him. t-jam gets into king's face, & logan is surprised when king backs down. later t-jam compliments logan on his work in english class & invites logan to join the badd boyz during lunch. logan agrees, but is taken aback when lunch involves sneaking out of the school & waiting around in the parking lot for some older gang dudes to show up with "'za" (that's "pizza" for all you losers still speaking multi-syllabically). but it doesn't take long for logan to stop worrying about breaking the rules & enjoy the thrill that comes from hanging out with the badd boyz.
t-jam invites logan along on a trip to the local shopping area, which sounds kind of like a strip mall. this has nothing to do with the book, but god, i really hate strip malls. i don't think there is anything more depressing than a strip mall. i have occasion to visit them every now & again, & i always want to cry for the rest of the day after i do.
anyway, the badd boyz notice that logan is pretty friendly with the owner of the local music store. apparently the owner is friends with logan's dad. the owner dude shares A LOT of sensitive information with logan & the other badd boyz concerning when the latest shipment of nicky cash tapes is due to arrive, & exactly how deliveries are facilitated. he's kind of like the security guard played by chris farley in "wayne's world". logan is oblivious, but t-jam takes careful mental notes. he also steals a pair of sunglasses out of an unlocked car in the parking lot, & logan realizes that the other guys they were with were acting shifty as well. he knows that "badd boyz" is not just an incredibly witty & clever name, but that some members of the gang also engage in various illicit activities. he confront t-jam about the sunglasses & t-jam returns them.
on saturday, t-jam calls logan to invite him to go shopping again. this time, logan is picked up by some of the older boys, who can drive. they make a beeline for the record shop, & then the older guys wander off to shop on their own. the owner sees logan & the younger badd boyz & invites them over to watch the shipment. because what could be more fascinating to middle school boys than watching a box of tapes be placed on a loading dock? AMAZING. there's a commotion inside the store, the owner runs in to check things out, a woman breathlessly exclaims that her purse was nearly snatched, & the next thing you know, t-jam grabs logan & hustles him back to the car. everyone else jumps in & logan notices a stolen box of nicky cash tapes in the front seat. when he confronts t-jam about the theft, t-jam insists that logan is in as deep as any of the dudes who were there to commit the theft, & that if he squeals, the authorities will think he's guilty. which makes absolutely no sense if you really think about it, but the rest of the plot hinges on logan being scared & reluctant to tattle, so...he goes with it.
at school, t-jam leans on him some more not to tell, & also manipulates him into helping a couple of badd boyz sneak into the school after-hours to rob lockers (logan doesn't know that's what they're going to do). when logan protests the locker thefts, t-jam again insists that logan is as guilty as the guys actually doing the stealing & to stay quiet. the hammer the point home, the badd boyz leave threatening notes in logan's locker. one insinuates that if logan tells, the badd boyz will hurt mary anne somehow. logan doesn't tell. as a thank you, the badd boyz leave a special badd boyz gang jacket in logan's locker. i forgot to mention that all the badd boyz wear matching black (leather?) jackets with their names stitched on them, & they all dress like arthur fonzarelli, because that is so menacing in modern times. logan tells t-jam to take the jacket back & there's a genuinely hilarious exchange in which logan asks who t-jam "conned into stitching my name" on to the jacket & t-jam replies, "hey, man, leave my mom out of this." i LOLed.
finally the badd boyz leave two nicky cash concert tickets in logan's locker as a thanks for not telling. logan doesn't want to accept them but mary anne sees them before he can do anything with them, & of course assumes that logan somehow procured the tickets to take her to the concert. she is over the moon, so logan backs down & agrees to take her to the concert. he is, however, overcome with guilt & confusion. he suspects that the badd boyz are planning to rob the record store yet again, & he feels that he will be responsible if they pull it off. but he doesn't know who to tell or how to tell without incriminating himself.
logan & mary anne go for dinner before the concert, & mary anne casually mentions that two nicky cash concert tickets were stolen from a girl's locker a few days before. logan realizes that is where the badd boyz got the tickets they gave to him. he takes a deep breath & admits everything to mary anne. she is pissed with logan for getting in so deep with the badd boyz, but first she calls the girl whose tickets were stolen in order to return them. then she tells logan to tell his parents everything, & then to go to the cops. which logan does. the cops are understanding & say that members of the badd boyz gang are familiar faces around the station. the cop encourages logan not to become familiar himself. the cop also explains that the badd boyz recruit people by manipulating them into helping with crimes & then bullying them & buying their silence with gifts & favors, until the new person is incorporated into the group. like they tried to do with logan.
the older members are arrested for the record store thefts in a sting operation, & after a little while, some of the younger members ditch their jackets & gang nicknames & start making new friends. the image on the cover absolutely never happened.
Logan starts hanging out with the "Badd Boys," a sort of gang or at least consortium of young thugs who wear leather jackets and shoplift and stuff. He thinks they get a bad rap and he forms a friendship with the leader, T-Jam. But he changes his mind when he realizes T-Jam has been using him for his trustworthy clean-cut Ken Doll looks and his friendship with the owner of a record store. After social engineering some inside info, T-Jam stages a heist of boy band records, making Logan an unwittiLogan starts hanging out with the "Badd Boys," a sort of gang or at least consortium of young thugs who wear leather jackets and shoplift and stuff. He thinks they get a bad rap and he forms a friendship with the leader, T-Jam. But he changes his mind when he realizes T-Jam has been using him for his trustworthy clean-cut Ken Doll looks and his friendship with the owner of a record store. After social engineering some inside info, T-Jam stages a heist of boy band records, making Logan an unwitting accomplice. T-Jam threatens to implicate Logan if Logan tells, but is sweet to him as long as Logan stays silent, including giving him a Badd Boys jacket and tickets to see the boy band (for Mary Anne, of course!) Logan feels stuck until he learns that the tickets were stolen from a girl in school, and he feels bad. Mary Anne encourages him to tell his parents, who encourage him to tell the police. They can’t do much to T-Jam, anyway, as he’s a minor, but I guess it’s the thought that counts. The title of this book is misleading; it’s not really about Logan’s struggle as a guy baby-sitter, not nearly as much as the previous one was. However, his insecurity about his manliness and his baby-sitting-related loss of upper hand in dealing with bullies is what sends him into the arms of T-Jam, it’s arguably a driving force of the book.
Okay, so this is one of multiple BSC stories in which shoplifting is like, the most evil thing you can do and the bad kids are all so bad and so cliche, but, I don’t know, I like it. Logan’s voice is fresh and funny as in his first book, and T-Jam is quite likeable, too, really. He’s got a real classic bad boy charm, complete with the apparently genuine and slightly wistful appreciation for the nice-guy hero. You root for him, and for Logan’s friendship with him. Or maybe just I do, because I like things that are so, so gay.
Slash Watch: Mary Anne of Logan and T-Jam: "You let him have your combination? I don’t even have your combination. I guess you guys are real close."
Tertiary Character Watch: Why is it Lew Greenberg who says, "Don’t you guys ever feel like being bad everyone once in awhile--just in fantasy?" and Austin Bentley and Trevor Sandbourne who scoff? Trevor Sandbourne totally wants to be bad every once in awhile and, what’s more, I don’t understand why he is even friends with all these jocks when clearly he is a precious, troubled flower. It’s like the writers don’t even remember why Claudia was in love with him in the first place in book #2.
Timing: Springtime (nice weather) but not quite the end of the school year yet. It came out in July 1993, over a year after the first Logan book, but I assume it takes place during the tail end of the same school year.
Revised Timeline: Spring of twelfth grade. I actually super buy this as a time for Logan to be getting in with bad kids; it’s the end of an era, he’s bored and anxious, and kind of wondering what it all might have been like if he hadn’t been afraid to cut loose and be bad every now and again....more
I really liked the first book from Logan's POV (Logan's Story), but this one was just stupid. Somehow Logan gets involved in a gang (YES A GANG in Stoneybrooke, Connecticut) that carry out such crimes as stealing sunglasses from unlocked cars and threatening people with notes showing them as mice caught in giant mouse traps. Wow.
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 meAnn 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 memories and feelings. Many are written about contemporary problems or events. All of Ann's characters, even the members of the Baby-sitters Club, are made up. But many of her characters are based on real people. Sometimes Ann names her characters after people she knows, and other times she simply chooses names that she likes.
Ann has always enjoyed writing. Even before she was old enough to write, she would dictate stories to her mother to write down for her. Some of her favorite authors at that time were Lewis Carroll, P. L. Travers, Hugh Lofting, Astrid Lindgren, and Roald Dahl. They inspired her to become a writer herself.
Since ending the BSC series in 2000, Ann’s writing has concentrated on single novels, many of which are set in the 1960s.
After living in New York City for many years, Ann moved to the Hudson Valley in upstate New York where she now lives with her dog, Sadie, and her cats, Gussie, Willy and Woody. Her hobbies are reading, sewing, and needlework. Her favorite thing to do is to make clothes for children.