Reading Diary: BSC#10: Logan Likes Mary Anne! by Ann M. Martin
"You know, that wasn't easy. I'm beginning to wonder if . . . we're in over our heads . . . What happens if we start getting a lot of jobs we can't handle? What do we tell our clients?"
. . . "Well, we can't un-advertise, so we better just figure out what to do. We're too busy. How are we going to handle the problem?"
"I've done a lot of baby-sitting," spoke up an unfamiliar male voice.
The five members of the Baby-sitters Club swiveled their heads toward the opposite end of the long table.
"In Louisville," the voice continued. "I've had plenty of experience."
I froze . . . The voice belonged to Logan Bruno, the wonderful, amazing Cam Geary look-alike.
It is the last day of Unabashedly Romantic August, albeit the first day I've called it that, and therefore the last proper opportunity to review the Baby-Sitters Club book in which middle school sweethearts Mary Anne Spier and Logan Bruno meet for the first time.
Incidentally, this is also the first time I've noticed how little description the boy characters get in these books. It made sense in previous installments, where everyone from the baby-sitting charges to the sitters' own parents are more or less two-dimensional, and only the members of the Baby-Sitters Club really get to shine as individuals. But Ann M. Martin is already setting Logan up to be significant--not just to the series, but also to the club--so it really does sell him short to say only that he has a Southern accent and looks like an equally fictional teen heartthrob.
but in the BSC universe, is Cam Geary
on the left or on the right? =P
Logan isn't the first new member the club has thought about recruiting and he won't be the last, but as far as I know, he's the only boy who ever receives that honour. And I would have liked to have seen him interacting more with the club members and with their clients, because that is how we get the measure of a character in this series. The bad news is that all Martin seems to want him to be is a love interest for her shyest baby-sitter. The good news is that he still gets a baby-sitting gig of his own and the shyest baby-sitter has the task of tagging along to see how well he does.
What follows is a study in different--we could almost say, contrasting--child-minding styles. For instance, when the boy they are watching attempts to do some chinning on the shower curtain rod and comes crashing down, Logan recalls the time he did the exact same thing and starts trading tales of gym class catastrophes with the younger boy . . . while Mary Anne can't believe that it doesn't even occur to Logan to check their charge for injuries and has to do it herself. In fairness, nothing is broken or bleeding--and Logan's personal experience with the same makes Mary Anne seem overly fussy. But Martin seems to be careful about what she portrays as a "boy-girl" thing: the romantic tension between them gets to be that; their different approaches to children don't.
The rest of the book has more of the acceptable boy-girl stuff--namely a date, a dance, and a mixed party--but these are merely milestones in Mary Anne's development rather than movements in the development of a theme . . . or even an argument. Only at the very end do the BSC admit, ever so tacitly, that perhaps boys do make better baby-sitters for other boys. (Was it really so hard, girls? LOL!) When all is added up, Logan Likes Mary Anne! is okay, and even kind of sweet; but it will never be one of my favourite BSC books.
Image Sources: a) BSC #10: Logan Likes Mary Anne! by Ann M. Martin, b) Sixteen Candles screen cap