the best friends you’ll never have

As I mentioned in my last post, I actually don’t have Stage Fright yet, so we’re skipping it this week. Which is a shame, since Me and Katie is a sequel of sorts to Stage Fright

Wendy White’s little sister, Katie, is very talented and wins lots of awards for piano and art. Wendy is athletic and is ten to Katie’s eight. She also has friends, like Sara from Stage Fright. Wendy starts taking riding lessons and Katie does too, killing Wendy’s vibe. That’s basically the book.

This book was the last one Ann wrote before the BSC started, and although I can’t speak about Stage Fright, it definitely has more of a BSC feel, albeit it seems intended for a slightly younger audience. It even opens with Lerangis-style onomatopoeia! The older/younger sister dynamic is also a common plot point in Ann’s books (Janine and Claudia, obviously, and Pearl and Lexie from Ten Rules for Living with My Sister). Ann herself, of course, has a sister named Jane. She based Claudia and Janine’s sisterly dynamic off her own (Ann was the Janine of the two), and I would guess that there is a lot from her life in this book as well.

Even as someone who took riding lessons as a kid, I found a lot of this book boring. Basically, Wendy is jealous and Katie just wants to be her friend. There is a lot of horse stuff. Although it’s not explicitly mentioned, the Whites are well-off–they have a housekeeper, and when Wendy wants to take riding lessons, her parents agree immediately. Here, though, the MOM is a lawyer, which is a nice change from every dad in Stoneybrook being a lawyer.

What kind of brings the sisters together is when Wendy’s favorite horse at the barn is injured, and he is going to be given away as a pet. Wendy, of course, wants to convert their garage into a stable, and Katie tries to help Wendy convince their parents to take on the horse. This does not work, and their parents end up giving them a cocker spaniel instead. There is also a horse show for their class, and surprisingly, Wendy does not win first (she has to ride a difficult horse), but she seems pretty happy with third place and gets her name in the newspaper. So, happy ending, even though it will probably be many years until the sisters actually become friends. Oh, Wendy also ends up in the Guinness Book of World Records, for the Barbie-and-Ken saga she and her friends composed.

I would say this book is only really worth reading for an Ann completist, and I can’t even think of much to analyze here. I guess it’s interesting to see how she gets closer to BSC style.

Stray Thoughts:

  • The book is dedicated to Myriah Leigh Perkins and Gabrielle Ann Perkins.
  • Sir Alec Guinness makes an adorable cameo appearance.
  • Ann gave Wendy the middle name of Matthews, which is also Ann’s middle name.
  • Wendy and her friends believe a horse can be bought for fifty bucks.

    No external links this week. This book, sorry to say, is slightly too boring to warrant interesting blog posts.

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