These bitches. Last night Brian and I were talking about vacation spots, and I said that Hawaii would be pretty cool, and then today I remembered that (as usual) a bunch of fictional thirteen year olds are waaaay better traveled than I am.
This trip is some school excursion, and everyone* gets to go except for Mallory**, because she's practically a member of the Duggar family. (Okay, the Pikes are just rational people who were like "hmm, send our eleven year old on an expensive Hawaiian vacation? No thanks." As this is an extremely practical viewpoint, it is not shared by any of the other parents.) So the concept behind this book is that it's a travel journal put together by the more fortunate babysitters as a gift to Mallory. I don't know. If all of my best friends were going off on a trip together, I feel like maybe a better gift would be some new Fryes, not a scrapbook documenting the totally awesome times they had without me.
No wonder Mallory ends up fleeing Stoneybrook for boarding school.
In the introductions, we learn that Claudia buys "the ugliest junk at thrift shops and somehow turns it into cool outfits. Stacey wears great clothes, too, but her theory of fashion is more cool-at-the-store, cool-on-the-body. Her style is Young Sophisticate. (At least that's the name of the section she shops in at Bellair's department store.)"
Young Sophisticate? So that's where she's getting all those wool slacks.
We also learn that "if a study showed that grass was nutritious, Dawn would graze for her supper." Ah, Kristy. I feel like she and I would be really good -- steak-eating, denim-wearing -- friends. Maybe I would pull her aside for a talk about the dorky white sneakers and baggy socks.
Abby Stevenson's Patented Suitcase Packing Method: "I went to my dresser and removed the contents of Drawer Number One, and shoved it into the suitcase. All underwear and bathing suits. About three-quarters of Drawer Number Two (summer shirts) made it, and the same with Drawer Number Three (shorts, skirts). Then I human-vacuumed the bottom of my closet for shoes and dumped them in, too."
Customary "Claudia Is An Overpacker" Paragraph: "Claudia arrived last (surprise, surprise). We peered through the window as her family tried to load two enormous suitcases into the jammed cargo hold. It was like watching a pair of tardy hippos crowding onto Noah's Ark."
That's all the fashion you get in the text, so here are some notable plot points:
- Abby gets cast in a sunscreen commercial, simply because she's hot and sporty. She pretends she's 18 and somehow everyone buys it.
- Pearl Harbor gives Claudia a massive guilt complex about being Japanese. She's kind of a bummer to be around.
- Stacey and a couple other SMS students get into a helicopter crash and are lost for a day or so. Naturally, this turns into a diabetic emergency.
- Jessi spends so much time documenting the trip that she barely even gets to experience it.
- Dawn cleans up a beach. She and Jessi both really need to learn how to relax.
Bonus fashion advice for poorly dressed thirteen year olds over on the tumblr.
* Including Dawn, who now lives in California. So she flew out to see her mom for the summer and then immediately decided to peace out and go to Hawaii instead. Such a kind, considerate young lady.
** Actually, Kristy doesn't go either. Why? Well, because Watson is taking the entire Thomas-Brewer clan to Hawaii later in the summer. So you can save your tears.