The Babysitter books - R.L Stine - Fear Street childhood memories.
So last month when my friend Kristy Jett was visiting for the 4th of July weekend, we wandered into a used book store up in Salem NH. There we went straight to the young adult section and seriously couldn't believe our luck in the sweet finds we found. It was the complete meca of R.L Stine Goosebump books and Fear Street gems.
I was super excited.
Anywho, after buying what seemed to be fifteen or so books, I noticed I had snagged the first three books in Stine's Babysitter series. Quickly flipping through them I noticed that his books are what I like to call "fluff". Now this isn't me insulting the man at all. In fact I'm sure I speak for a lot of people my age, these books...mostly the Goosebump titles were HUGE parts of growing up. Some of his stories are a million times better than half the bullshit that's made into movies today.
Well by fluff I mean these books were being cranked out one after another (remind you of the slasher era anyone?) and these books all had a common theme, weren't exactly going to find their way on best seller lists, yet had a huge following, were amusing, and had some pretty good gems among the millions of titles that were released.
I'm a huge reader and I was able to read The Babysitter I, II, and III in less than a week. Each book is less than 200 pages, which for me is a breeze. Much like awesome 80's horror movies, what caught my eye to these movies was the artwork.
The babysitter series follows a young high school girl named Jenny who is offered a babysitter gig late one fall on the other side of town in this huge creepy rundown house. What unnerves Jenny is the fact that a series of horrible breaks ins have occurred in town, all of which are targeted at young babysitters. Once she starts looking after the adorable little boy Donny, she begins feeling as if she's being watched. Between strange phone calls that keep repeating that company is coming, Donny's strange overprotective father, and a new boy that can't seem to stop scaring her, Jenny soon begins getting stalked by someone who wants to hurt her. Someone she knows...but who?
Without giving away too much, the ending twist I believe it or not didn't see coming. Pretty well written!
The Babysitter II takes place a year later with Jenny in therapy trying to recover from that faithful night the year before. After a bitter breakup, and a new mysterious boy in town, Jenny decides to move on and start to babysit a new boy named Eli from a new family. Strange thing is this new little boy is strange...very strange, and the phone calls begin again, telling Jenny company is coming.
The ending of this book wasn't nearly as good but nevertheless still very creepy. The little boy character Eli was pretty unnerving and a few of those chapter cliff hangers were great.
The last book I finished from the series was part III which follows Jenny staying with her cousin for the summer a year after part II. Here she's convinced a ghost from the past is coming after her, trying to kill her. Yet again, a pretty awesome twist that if it was written for an adult audience could have been a whole lot better.
I'm still yet to read part 4, I gotta order it. I'm pretty interested to see where the series finally ends and what happens to Jenny once and for all.
I plowed through these books and it seemed they got a little more lighter after the first book. Don't expect blood and guts in these books, their aimed for a younger crowd but still had some creepy moments. Like I said, complete fluff, but still lots of fun.
I just finished The Beach House, which I'm sure I'll review (that's a cover I couldn't seem to stop remembering from my childhood.) but as if right now I'm gonna read all the Fear Street books I got and enjoy these little guilty pleasures. Way to feel eight years old again!