At long last, the Schafers and Spiers are done renovating their barn. Mary Anne is excited to move in, even though she still misses her old house. She's also excited that Dawn and Jeff are coming for the summer, and that they're bringing along a guyes: Sunny Winslow. Mary Anne is looking forward to having Sunny stay with them, but she's a little apprehensive at the same time. Not only is Mary Anne a little jealous of how close Dawn and Sunny are now, but Sunny's mom has just died of cancer, and Mary Anne isn't sure how to act around her. Sharon encourages her to just include Sunny in everything that she and Dawn would be doing anyway.
It doesn't seem like Mary Anne has to worry much about Sunny at first. From the second she steps off the plane, Sunny is running at top speed. She's enthusiastic and energetic, and excited to be visiting Stoneybrook. Mary Anne can tell that she's not quite all right, though, so she vows to be supportive and just follow Sunny's lead. That proves to be a little tough to do; on her first full day in Stoneybrook, Sunny decides that Mary Anne needs a new boyfriend. During their day at the pool, Sunny flirts with this older high school guy on Mary Anne's behalf, and makes a date with him and two of his friends. Mary Anne really isn't comfortable with the idea of going on a date with anyone yet, but she goes along with Sunny's plan anyway. The date is kind of a flop, and Mary Anne knows she needs to tell Sunny she doesn't really want to go out with any of the guys again. Sunny beats her to the punch, though.
With all of Sunny's energy and her eagerness to do everything there is to do in Stoneybrook, she quickly gets tired of the same old routine. That's when she gets her big idea: she, Dawn, and Mary Anne should sneak off to New York City for the day. Both Dawn and Mary Anne are apprehensive about the idea, but Sunny eventually talks them into it. Mary Anne feels totally guilty at first, but she ends up relaxing enough to have a really good time. Then, while the girls are shopping, she happens to look at her watch. They had totally lost track of time, and it's late enough that they need to leave NYC in order to get home before Sharon and Richard. Sunny, though, doesn't want to leave. In fact, she wants to stay late enough to go clubbing that night. Dawn is having none of it. She calls Sunny out on her irresponsible behavior, and draws attention to the fact that she's been getting her own way ever since her mom died. This subdues Sunny, who finally agrees to go home.
None of the three girls are particularly happy with each other by the time they get home. Dawn leaves again right away to get Jeff at the Pikes', and Sunny stomps upstairs and shuts herself in the room she's sharing with Dawn. When Mary Anne heads up there later, she hears Sunny inside crying. Mary Anne knows that Sunny really needed to let go like that, so she just lets her cry. They talk a little about what Sunny's been going through, losing her mom and being away from home. In fact, Sunny's decided that she needs to be with her dad, and that she should go home.
Thoughts and Things
- The big question...who's Dawn and who's Sunny on the cover? I think Dawn is the one on the left, in the yellow shirt, and Sunny's the one on the right, with the necklace.
- The New York trip was the sole reason that this book got a rating of 3. Not only would I have LOVED to do something that daring when I was a kid, but I also love the way they travel. Walking up and down random streets and NOT sticking to the typical tourist stuff is how I like to see big cities. :)
- Is it just me, or does Sunny give off a bit of a....promiscuous vibe? You know she'll be at all the frat parties during college....
- The new Schafer-Spier house sounds cool, but I can't imagine them turing the barn into a house. I never pictured it being big enough, and I DID picture it as being kind of run-down.
- Even though I don't miss the baby-sitting stuff too much in this book, I'm glad that we've seen a little more of some of the BSC's charges in the last few books.