By Awnali Mills
Kelly just wants to earn enough money to go to summer camp, but when her best friend suggests babysitting, Kelly is hesitant. She doesn’t actually like kids. So when her mother volunteers her to babysit on Halloween, she’s less than thrilled. Still, she’s determined to do her best.
And then the Boogeyman kidnaps her charge, Jacob.
Suddenly, Kelly is introduced to the world of butt kicking babysitters who are out to protect kids from the monsters who would kidnap and hurt them. Kelly isn’t sure of her place in this strange new reality, but she’s not about to let some creep hurt Jacob. She throws herself into the hunt for Jacob, and plans on doing a little butt kicking of her own.
I could totally see this book as a movie, so wasn’t surprised to read that the author is a screenwriter and the book started as a screenplay. The book was fast-paced and fun. Ballarini has some unusual descriptions that made me tilt my head and mimic Inigo Montoya, “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.” It’s not that the descriptions were wrong…just…off by about 35°. Maybe it’s just me. I looked back through for examples and couldn’t find one quickly. You’ll just have to read it for yourself and see if some of the descriptions strike you as odd.
At any rate, Kelly is a fun heroine, and there are more books to come. I think I’ll be good with just the first one, but I’ll happily recommend it to kids who like lots of action. It’s a good one to keep under your belt for Halloween recommendations. Grades 4-5.