Ciara's Reviews > Stacey's Broken Heart

Stacey's Broken Heart by Ann M. Martin
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's review
May 07, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: kids-books, read-in-2011

i guess the hawaii super special was supposed to foreshadow that stacey & robert aren't getting along that well. there was a lot in that book about other girls flirting with robert & stacey getting pissy about it. this book opens with stacey & robert playing a few rounds of tennis. &...really? tennis? they're 13. though i guess they are 13-year-olds that live in connecticut. well-played, ghostwriter. stacey & robert are relaxing after their tennis game when a few of the "bad girls" that stacey was once friends with sunater up. they ask if stacey & robert would like to play doubles with them, but stacey says she is tired. she knows robert won't play without her, even though he obviously wants to play. true to form, robert declines the invite. he says something to stacey about knowing she must be worn out because of her diabetes, but she honestly admits that she just didn't want to hang out with those girls.

a few other things happen which i guess are supposed to illustrate that stacey & robert are not 100% happy together. he likes spending time with the friends that got stacey in trouble with both her mother & the babysitters club, while stacey "thinks their values are the pits". i LOLed. i totally remember being like nine years old & sincerely believing that teenagers talked that way. sorry to break it to you, tween readers. that's not how teenagers talk.

one morning stacey is bored & gives robert a call. his sister reports that robert is "playing basketball with some of the guys". stacey bikes over to the courts where robert & his friends usually play. his friends are there, but robert is not. they ask stacey where robert is. they invited him to play basketball but he declined, saying that he had plans. they assumed his plans were with stacey. stacey doesn't know what to think. it appears that robert lied to her, but there is a chance he is playing basketball elsewhere in stoneybrook with a different group of guys.

when she has a chance to ask robert about it, he explains he was playing one-on-one on some different courts against a different friend. but emily bernstein calls stacey at the babysitters club meeting that afternoon & says she saw robert at the mall food court with a girl. she didn't see who the girl was, but it was a brunette--definitely not stacey. stacey doesn't know what to think. was robert on a date with another girl? did he just bump into a friend? is there a good reason why he didn't tell stacey he had been to the mall?

meanwhile, stacey has been asked to babysit for a week for the walker family in new york city while the walker parents prepare a joint art gallery show. stacey is confused because she is not that disappointed about not seeing robert for a week. & it doesn't seem like robert is that bummed about it either. but stacey would like to get to the bottom of the weird shit that is going on between them before she leaves. she recruits claudia to help her spy on robert (always the foundation of a healthy relationship) but she doesn't really turn anything up. there's a great scene in which claudia & stacey go to the mall because they heard robert is going to be there. they stake out the movie theatre because stacey thinks maybe robert will be meeting a date there. sure enough, robert turns up...with pete black. stacey assumes they're going to see a shoot 'em up alien movie that stacey wouldn't see with robert, so she forces claudia to buy tickets to it so they can sit in the theatre & see is robert & pete meet girls inside. stacey sees two gorgeous teenage girls meeting dudes that she thinks are robert & pete & she is totally distraught...until claudia points out that pete has grown his hair longer & neither of the dudes in question has long hair. stacey is relieved & wants to leave the theatre, but by this point, claudia is invested in the movie & wants to see how it ends. god, i love claudia. she's so easily distracted. when stacey & claudia finally do leave the theatre, they bump right into pete & robert...coming out of a romantic comedy in the next theatre over. awwwww. so THAT'S why robert's been acting weird!

stacey is still confused & feeling like robert isn't telling her the whole truth. robert agrees to see her off on the train to new york the next morning, but he's late. stacey is almost in tears by the time her mom says they have to leave right now so as to not miss the train. that's when robert shows up with a big bouquet of flowers. stacey is relieved, but still feels a weird sense of loss that she doesn't understand as her train leaves for new york.

she kind of forgets about it though once she's back in new york. her father takes her out for a nice dinner & they go to the met. she kind of tells him a little about her confusion about robert & he suggests that stacey may be too young to go steady with one guy anyway, & that maybe she & robert should cool things off. stacey flips & screams at him in the egyptian wing. she feels embarrassed pretty quickly, but...still. uncool, stacey. she throws herself into the job with the walkers, playing with the kids, taking them to central park & the museum of natural history. she thinks it's really exciting to be around while two great artists are preparing for a show. she gets to see all the backstage preparations, with folks from the gallery coming by all the time to take measurements & get stuff done. one emissary from the gallery is a foxy teenage boy named ethan. he has long black hair, blue eyes, & an earring. stacey thinks he is C-U-T-E, robert or no robert. ethan spends some time playing freeze tag with stacey & the walker kids & stacey also appreciates the fact that she is so good with the kids--fun & un-self-conscious. she asks mrs. walker if ethan is going to be around a lot this week & mrs. walker is all, "interested, huh?" but stacey is all, "no! i have a boyfriend! i just think ethan is...nice." her father & claudia both also notice that stacey seems to have a lot to say about how...nice...ethan is.

unfortunately, claudia is also calling with some bad news. she saw robert downtown a few days after stacey left...kissing andi gentile (a girl from his friend group). stacey thanks her for calling & hangs up. she cries a lot, but realizes that she is crying more because she is hurt & embarrassed that robert kissed another girl, & less because she really minds that he kissed another girl. she realizes that she & robert were kind of spinning their wheels & she's not that sad about ending the relationship.

at the end of the week, ethan asks if he can call her & stacey says yes. ethan clarifies that he is interested & stacey says she is too. she explains that she was in a relationship but "that's over now." andi is waiting for stacey when she gets back to stoneybrook. she admits that she & robert are seeing each other & hopes stacey won't hate her. stacey says it's fine, but she wants andi to leave. andi leaves. robert calls shortly thereafter & asks to come see stacey. when he shows up, he's all, "um, uh, so...uh, i don't know how to say this," until stacey is like, "you kissed andi. i know." robert is shocked that stacey knows, & seems to expect her to scream or cry. stacey doesn't do that & just says she is disappointed that robert felt the need to sneak around & lie, but she accepts that their relationship is over. robert leaves & claudia comes over. stacey gushes about ethan. the end.

so, not so much "stacey's broken heart" as "stacey gets another dude on the hook before her previous relationship is even cold". stacey is totally going to be one of those women in like twenty years whose therapist makes her keep a journal of all the experiences she has leaving the house alone, to try to break her dependency on men.
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