Tuesday, June 8, 2010

#131 The Fire at Mary Anne's House

Summary

Early one morning, Tigger wakes Mary Anne up. At first, she can't figure out why. Then, she hears the smoke alarms, and her dad yelling for her. Their house is one fire! The place is totally filled with smoke, but everyone (including Tigger) makes it outside safely. Sharon managed to grab the cordless phone on her way out, and she's already called for help. The firefighters get there quickly, but all the family can do is watch their house and everything in it go up in flames. Pretty soon, the neighbors start arriving. Stacey tries to get Mary Anne to go home with her so she doesn't have to stand their watching the fire, but Mary Anne doesn't want to leave. She's sort of frozen in place...and she can't cry. Eventually, Sharon starts making calls to everyone who needs to know about the fire. Many of them want to talk to Mary Anne, but she refuses until Dawn is the one asking. She'll be heading to Connecticut as soon as possible to be with the family.

Eventually, the Thomases and Brewers show up with an invitation to stay at their house until other arrangements can be made. Richard, Sharon, and Mary Anne accept, and Mary Anne heads there for some rest while Richard and Sharon start searching through the rubble for anything salvageable. After her nap, Mary Anne heads back where her house used to be. They've managed to find a few things, including Sharon's wedding ring, but most of their stuff is gone. Mary Anne still can't cry, though...even when Dawn finally arrives and is crying herself.

Things at the Thomas-Brewer house are a little overwhelming for the Spiers and Schafers. They even have to resort to sneaking out to the kids' playhouse in the backyard in order to have a family meeting about what to do next. Richard wants them to see the fire as an opportunity to start a new life. In fact, he wants them to start a REALLY new life...in Philadelphia. He's been offered a great job there, and Sharon wants to go back to school. She'd have her pick of schools in Philly. Mary Anne is in shock; she's lived in Stoneybrook all her life, and she doesn't particularly want to leave.

One night, Mary Anne wakes up and can't get back to sleep. She sneaks out of the Thomas-Brewer mansion, borrows Kristy's bike, and rides over to where her house was. She goes into the barn, which is where they've been storing everything that might be able to be saved. Mary Anne starts to feel really, really alone, and that's when she finally starts crying about everything. Dawn finds her, and they have a nice cry together. That's more or less where the book (and the series) ends....

Subplot: Lots of fire safety info. Also, the BSC enters a "Best Baby-sitter" contest as a group, with help from their charges. I don't think we ever find out who wins...

Rating: 3

Thoughts and Things
  • I couldn't believe how...graphic the fire scenes were. Wow. I've read this one once or twice before, but I don't remember it being so scary. I'm more scared of drowning than I am of fire, but still...
  • It was a little out of place for Mary Anne to have the final book in the regular BSC series. It should have been Kristy. In fact, Kristy's Worst Idea would have made a great final book in the series. Some elements could have been taken from Everything Changes (members dropping out of the club, for instance), added to Kristy's Worst Idea...which could have led into the FF books.
  • In a way, I like that the book was left open-ended. Problems aren't always solved and questions aren't always answered neatly within the span of 130 pages. :)

Well....that's it. The end of the regular BSC books. Finishing this one gave me such a WEIRD feeling! I know it's not really the end; there's still FF, The Summer Before, and my other Ann books to keep me occupied. Even so, I've all but finished what I set out to do almost a year ago...that's just crazy to think about! Thanks for reading along, and stay tuned for BSC: The Sequel. ;)

17 comments:

  1. Wow, congrats on finishing the series! I've really enjoyed your recaps since I discovered your blog a few months ago. I agree that Kristy's Worst Idea would have made the most sense especially since most of the books higher than that just didn't have the same magic as the earlier ones.

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  2. Mary Ann looks demon possessed on the cover.

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    1. That's what I thought...

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  3. I always wondered how the regular series finished. I have one nitpick about this though...the cordless phone wouldn't work, because you still need the base station to transmit, and obviously it might not if it was burned up ;-)

    I am so impressed that you've actually completed your goal. Me, I'm sure I'd have given up around book 60.

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  4. I think that Mrs. Prezzioso lent Sharon her cell phone.

    I also thought it odd the Mary Anne got the last one. I guess she got the last of the first (Kristy's Great Idea, Claudia and the Phantom Phone Calls, The Truth about Stacey, Mary Anne Saves the Day) but still...

    Congratulations on finishing!

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  5. Okay, about Sharon bringing the phone out. They made it sound like she got the phone out and called the fire department before that part of the house burned up. Mrs. Prezzioso came along later with her cell phone so Sharon could call friends/family. At that point, it was acknowledged that the cordless wouldn't have worked anymore because the base was gone.

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  6. congratulations on hitting the finish line! i've LOVED your recaps. are you going to do the california diaries series too?

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  7. No, not going to do CA Diaries. I don't own any of them, and they just aren't BSC-ish enough for me. :)

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  8. This book freaked me out as a kid- I always had a sort of house fire phobia, I still do a bit, so I'm not sure why I read it :P
    not the best way to end the series though, imo, though I guess the final FF book is the real final book.

    i just discovered this blog recently- so i'll have to go back and read all the other entries :)

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  9. Are you going to do the Friends Forever series, too?

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  10. Yep....going to blog "Everything Changes" right now!

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  11. Are you going to do "Little Sister"?

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  12. No, no Little Sister....I never got into those, and the ones I read back in the day weren't really my cup of tea.

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  13. This book definitely compounded the fire phobia a fire safety video in Sunday school instilled in me. *shudder* Poor Mary Anne. I always feel horrible because she lost so much of what was left of her mother.

    Congrats on finishing! Excellent job.

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  14. Hi Emily! Just wanted to say that I've really been enjoying these summaries, and sad they've had to end. Anyway, when your finished the FF series, there's still the spin offs. Like "The babysitter's little sister" and stuff like that. Anyway, great work!

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  15. I wonder what happened to Dawn's secret passage?

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    1. Same. The barn didn't get destroyed, so theres still a chance its there!

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