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Mary Anne wants to learn about her mother, who died when Mary Anne was a baby, so she goes into the attic and searches through her father's box of photos and papers. There she finds a deep secret. . . ....

Title : Mary Anne and the Secret in the Attic
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780590448017
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 176 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Mary Anne and the Secret in the Attic Reviews

  • Shira
    2019-02-16 08:28

    this is my first time reading this book!in this Ellen Miles-ghostwritten mystery, mary anne tries to track down information about her mom and her childhood. she discovers that after her mother's death, her father sent her to live with her maternal grandparents while he coped with his wife's death. when he finally decided he wanted her back, mary anne's grandparents don't want to give her back and a small custody battle ensued. years later mary anne's grandfather dies and her grandmother tries to develop a relationship with mary anne. mary anne villainizes her, thinking that she is trying to get custody again. eventually that all works out and mary anne goes to visit her. kind of a non-mystery mystery. subplot is that there is a stoneybrook heritage day to benefit the historical society in which many of the bsc kids participate (their classes sing songs, perform skits, recite a poem, create family trees, and more) and in which the bsc participate by creating local historical figure cutouts for photo posing.highlights:-in searching for heritage day stuff charlotte johanssen finds a locket with a photo of her great-grandmother in it and it looks just like her. I am not very wistful about where I come from, family tree stuff, etc. but I really like this part and would be super into finding a similar locket.-the pikes have apparently always had big families (which makes nicky's family tree project a little rough), like their great-grandfather who had ten brothers and sisters, all with p names like "peter pike and polly pike and prudence pike and paul pike." hahaha those names-mary anne giggles at gravestones with silly names like looney and stumpf but then she feels guilty about it. don't feel guilty, mary anne. near my parents' house there's a huge gravestone that you see from the road that says "BUTT" on it really big, and I continue to bless that person for dying and being buried there and having their last name written improbably largely on their gravestone, since I always get a good chuckle out of that.-the bsc make historical people cardboard cutouts for the heritage day so folks can pose for photos with them. the ones they make are george and martha washington (based on the logic that george and martha washington once came to a town that is half an hour away from stoneybrook), plus old hickory (from Mary Anne's Bad-Luck Mystery) and sophie (from Mallory and the Mystery Diary). dawn is inspired to find out more about jared mullray (from The Ghost at Dawn's House. all the bsc ghosts (most of whom were introduced by ellen miles) coming together!-when they're decorating the cutouts they get paint everywhere and logan takes off his shirt since it's covered in paint. mary anne gets shy. I LOVE THIS. little snippets of awkward 13-year-old budding sexuality!-a census taker comes to the door but mary anne thinks she's a social worker coming to check up on how the spiers are living (sent by her grandmother in a custody battle fight). this is so perfectly 13-year-old also: her assumption that everything that ever happens directly relates to her experiences and her feelings.-alma's (mary anne's mom's) letter to mary anne (she wrote it right before she died): "I would give anything to be with you today -- to be with you through all your days of growing up. I love you so much, and it hurts so badly to know that I have to leave you." there's something in my eye, guys. I'm not crying.-some resolutions at the end: mary anne goes to iowa to get to know her grandmother. mary anne and richard (her dad) go to the cemetery to see alma's grave. richard and mary anne invite verna (mary anne's grandmother) for christmas.lowlights/nitpicks:-there's a reference to mary anne's sassy magazine. mary anne reads sassy? no way. she's not alternative or indie in any way.-vanessa pike's poem for heritage day rhymes strong with strong. vanessa is way too experienced a poet to rhyme a word with itself.-"the reference room was pretty empty, since it was a nice day" -- spoken like someone who doesn't understand libraries. nobody cares if it's pleasant outside, they still come to the library!-the last chapter is all letters back and forth between mary anne (visiting her grandma) and her friends and family back home. it's kind of annoying to have this super special-style ending to a non-super special.-mary anne goes on a date with a boring iowa boy. WHY? why does she date someone who isn't logan when they're clearly exclusive at this point. this isn't early in their relationship like in Mary Anne and Too Many Boys. mary anne, you dog!claudia outfit:-"That day she was wearing a lacy white top over a solid white bodysuit, a black mini skirt with white polka dots on it, lacy white leggings, and red high-tops. Plus some really outrageous black-and-white jewelry (earrings and bracelets and necklaces) that she'd made herself out of papier-mâché."mary anne outfit:-"That day I was wearing a pink sweater and chinos, with these cute little boots I'd just bought."jackie disasters:-runs into somersaulting archie while holding a plate of crackers, and the crackers fly everywhere-tears the sleeve off his jacket when trying to put it on backwards for fun-pulls out a drawer in the town hall's records and the files spill everywhere-slides down the banister and almost knocks into the mayor (also at the town hall)-breaks a vase-spills kool aid all over the rug-falls down the stairsno snacks in claudia's room.

  • Ciara
    2019-02-09 14:49

    mary anne is sitting for charlotte johanssen, who is immersed in her project for heritage day at school. she is supposed to write a report about why her ancestors came to stoneybrook or something. charlotte is very fortunate in that she has tons of family pictures, letters, scrapbooks, diaries, & such forth to peruse. mary anne thinks charlotte is well on her way to having the best project in the school. they find photographs of charlotte's great-grandmother, berit. she looks just like a blonde version of charlotte. as mary anne watches charlotte surrounded by her family history, she begins to feel sad. she realizes that she doesn't have blood-related family besides her father. she has no memories of her mother, who died mere months after mary anne was born, & she stopped asking her father about her years before because she could see how sad it made him. she doesn't even know how her mother died (which seems crazy to me--all indications are that alma died after being sick for a while, & you'd think mary anne would need access to that information in case it's a genetic issue). when she goes home, she starts to wonder if maybe there is some kind of information on her mother somewhere in the house--maybe photos & letters like charlotte has. she decides that if there's anything like that, it's probably in the attic. she realizes she has never been in the attic before. she's home alone, so she seizes her opportunity to snoop privately & heads on up. sure enough, she finds a box full of photo albums. many of the photos are of mary anne as a baby--but the adults in the photo are elderly people that mary anne doesn't recognize. she's with them in all kinds of different settings, dressed for summer & winter, but she has no idea who they are. then she finds a bundle of letters with her mother's maiden name, baker, on the return address. they are addressed to richard. mary anne starts reading them & discovers they are from her maternal grandmother, verna. the bakers live on a farm in maynard, iowa, & the letters indicate that richard sent mary anne away to live with them shortly after alma died. mary anne is horrified. she thinks her father didn't want her...but then she wonders why she lives with him now. she keeps reading & discovers that richard eventually asked to have mary anne returned to him. the bakers were reluctant to let mary anne go...but finally conceded, with the caveat that it would be too difficult for them to see her again. mary anne is confused though. she thinks maybe the bakers had some kind of custody arrangement, & maybe this is why richard has always been so strict with mary anne. maybe the bakers were checking up on him, & if they found him wanting as a parent, they would take mary anne away again. she starts to panic over the possibility that she could be sent to live with her grandparents in iowa at any moment.this is basically the whole plot of the book: mary anne panicking over something that is incredibly far-fetched, about which she could easily get the facts just by asking richard about the whole thing. she spends the next eight or so chapters freaking the fuck out & it gets really tedious. she doesn't even tell the other members of the babysitters club at first. which seems really out of character, considering how she's only throwing fits to get attention, & then acting like she's just really sensitive. ugh. i hate mary anne.at one point, she decides to tell logan, but the phone rings before she can call him. she picks up just as her dad picks up on another extension. it's verna on the phone, calling to tell richard that her husband died, & it made her realize that agreeing not to see mary anne again was a mistake. mary anne interprets this as, verna is coming to get her & take her away to iowa forever. meanwhile, in our B-plot, the whole town has gone crazy for heritage day. all the little kids are doing school projects & heritage day itself is going to consist of a big town fair. of course the babysitters club can't let a fair happen without getting involved somehow. they decide to make life-size cut-outs of famous stoneybrook personalities, including old man hickory, sophie (the girl whose diary mallory found in book #29), & george & martha washington (who allegedly stayed the night once in a town thirty miles away--"close enough," says the babysitters club). they'll set the figures up & take people's photos & donate the proceeds to the historical society. what fun.everyone is over at dawn & mary anne's house to paint the figures. & everyone is making a mess. logan spills a jar of paint, & then dawn spills a jar of paint, & then logan spills paint all over mary anne, & then mallory decides to make cookies (in someone else's house?) & drops the eggs on the floor. a paint fight breaks out & logan becomes so paint-covered that he strips off his shirt. in the midst of this, someone knocks on the door, wanting to "ask a few questions". mary anne immediately assumes it's a social worker, & that her family situation isn't looking so hot right now, seeing as it is paint/egg-covered & topless. she pretty much starts hyperventilating & spills the beans to the rest of the club. dawn sensibly encourages mary anne to ask richard about the whole thing, but mary anne is reluctant to do so...for some reason. no one else seems to have anything helpful to say.at one point, mary anne goes to the cemetery to visit her mother's grave, & she realizes that she doesn't know where it is. seriously? seriously?! richard has never taken mary anne to her mother's grave? that dude kind of has issues, doesn't he? while mary anne is looking, she narrates that she "knows she was buried near her family," so she's looking for tombstones that say "baker". but then mary anne finds out that alma's family is in iowa. so who told her that alma was buried near family in stoneybrook? i am confused.anyway, mary anne finally asks richard about everything. he explains that he was devastated after alma died & didn't know how to be the parent she needed. so he sent her to iowa to live with alma's parents while he pulled himself together. after about a year, he was ready to take her back, but the bakers were reluctant to give her up. they finally did, after suggesting that they not see mary anne again because it would be too hard for them. which makes NO sense whatsoever. you don't want to give the child up, so you only do on the pre-condition that you never see her again? seems like the bakers have some issues too. no wonder mary anne is such a dramatic mess. her whole family is crazy.anyway, richard says verna called because she would like to see mary anne again after all--for a visit. mary anne decides she would like that.the heritage fair happens & it goes well. the babysitters club booth of course makes the most money because everything these girls do is perfect (except for the baby parade). bor-ing. mary anne flies to iowa to visit with verna. the whole last chapter is letters she writes home to dawn, kristy, logan, & richard, & then letters she writes to verna when she's back home in stoneybrook. mary anne & richard invite verna to come visit them for xmas. & richard gives mary anne a letter that alma wrote to her before she died. there's something in the letter about how alma knows mary anne will be in good hands with richard & how she knows that the bakers will also want to play a big role in mary anne's life. yeah, except for that part about having nothing to do with her until she was thirteen years old. i can't help but think that alma would be kind of pissed about that.

  • lisa
    2019-02-10 09:46

    Mary Anne is curious about her early life, and goes looking for her baby pictures. What she finds confuses her: her baby pictures seem to have been taken with unfamiliar people, at an unknown location. She explores the attic of her home, hoping to get the story of why her father sent her away.Things I remember from reading this as a kid:I was completely fascinated by this book when I was a kid. I think I read this when I was nine or ten. At this point in the series, we didn't know much about the baby sitters lives before Kristy's Great Idea. Later in the series we get the Portrait Collections, and the Baby Sitters Remember Super Special, but at this point there was hardly any information about Mary Anne's very early childhood. We know her mother died when she was a baby, and that her father was strict with her, but even as a kid I could see that a man dealing with the grief of losing his wife, would feel that he couldn't care for a baby as well. I could understand Mary Anne's anger too, that he kept such a huge part of her life from her, and seemingly would never have told her, if she hadn't gone looking for answers on her own.I remember the baby sitters throwing a party to paint something, and then a well dressed woman that Mary Anne assumes is a social worker shows up and sees Logan with his shirt off, and paint in his hair, and hears Mallory shouting about spilling things on the floor, and the loud music that's playing. This is how the BSC parties!Things I've considered since reading this as an adult:While I no longer consider many of the stories in the Mystery series to be true mysteries, and I think the baby sitters are not the great "sleuths" they think they are, I do think this is a good sort-of mystery, and a great addition to the story of Mary Anne. I don't think it makes perfect sense, especially the part about Mary Anne's grandparents not wanting to see her again after they let Richard take her back. But I like how Mary Anne sees the kids of Stoneybrook get caught up with Heritage Day where they research the history of Stoneybrook, and their families. She sees Charlotte Johanssen who has boxes and boxes of letters, photographs, and trinkets (clearly there's a hoarding gene in her family; also I don't buy that Charlotte's family completely forgot about a gold locket with diamond chips in it, which is buried at the bottom of a box) and she's jealous that Charlotte has so much of her family's information right at her fingertips. This prompts her to search the attic looking for her own history. I also liked that she's reluctant to ask her father to answer some basic family questions for her. She knows he's happy with his new wife, and the life he has now, and she doesn't want to turn him back into the sad, strict man she remembers from her childhood. The Pike triplets refers to themselves as "ace reporters" and the names of some of their "hot stories" include "Moving Pictures to Debut." I get a BIG kick out of the kids of Stoneybrook sometimes when they talk like B-characters in an old movie. I think one of my favorite things about this book is that once Mary Anne finds out that her father let her grandparents raise her, and then wanted her back, she assumes all kinds of crazy things. She's sure that her grandparents have custody rights, that they are coming to take her away, that she will have to live in Iowa, etc. This is exactly the kind of thing a teenager would assume, the most dramatic outcome. She really doesn't want to ask her father about the situation, even though Dawn presses her to do so. When she finally confronts her father about this he says that although there was a custody fight, her grandparents were reasonable enough to realize that Mary Anne should be raised by her father, and they don't have custody rights. Mary Anne's grandmother wants her to come visit, but she has no intention of making her live with her again. Which isn't an overly dramatic ending, just a normal one. It drives me insane that grandparents who cared so much about baby Mary Anne that they were willing to go to court for her would then say that they didn't want to see her again. This just doesn't make any sense at all. Why wouldn't they come visit Mary Anne and watch her grow up? Why wouldn't she visit their farm in Iowa as a kid? In past books Mary Anne has mentioned that she and her father were all alone in the world because all her relatives were dead (although she mysteriously mentions her grandfather having shingles in one of the more recent books; weird). Part of the reason she so excited when her father marries Sharon is because she finally has a larger family, and more of a support system which gives her peace of mind. What kind of adult would take that away from a child? What kind of people would care for a baby, ask to keep her, and then when they can't, say "Well it's too painful to see her anymore. Let's just pretend this never happened." This makes even less sense because Verna and Bill Baker were Mary Anne's maternal grandparents. So they lost their only daughter, and then they refuse to have a relationship with their only granddaughter?This book feels much more traumatic than I remember it being as a kid. Mary Anne is forced to confront a pretty big part of her life that she didn't know anything about. It also triggers her longing for a mother, and everything she missed out on by not growing up with one. Later in the series we get a more nuanced insight into Mary Anne's childhood. The series seems to veer away from portraying Mary Anne's father as strict and serious and dire. He has a sense of humor, and seems pretty sensitive to Mary Anne's needs as a child. If I imagine growing up with a father who seemed loving, but strict; who obviously cared for me, even if he did make stupid rules, then I can't begin to imagine what I would feel like knowing he didn't care for me for a year of my young life. I can't imagine how I would feel if I learned that my father wasn't at my first birthday because he had given me away to grandparents I didn't even know I had. This is a devastating event for Mary Anne, and she doesn't quite know what to do with herself. As a kid I was so desperate to get to the conclusion of this story that it didn't occur to me that Mary Anne clearly has a very hard time coping with learning these secrets of her early childhood. "I decided I felt so bad already that nothing I found out could make me feel much worse," she thinks right before she talks to her father, which is a pretty hard thing for anyone to acknowledge, much less a teenager. When her father reassures her we get a glimpse of the man who loved his daughter enough to insist that he raise her, even if he made some mistakes. Mary Anne seems to forgive everyone involved, but I wonder if she will look back on this as an adult, and realize what the adults in her life did to her by denying her an extended family.

  • Adalira Morningstar
    2019-01-22 06:24

    Great bookcase purge of 2017: I haven't gotten rid of a single book since 3rd grade so I'm rereading everything and deciding if I want to keep it. So yeah, there's going to be some weird choices. These books used to be my jam, as illustrated by the fact that I own like all of them. I even used to be in the club where they sent you the books as they were published. But now here I am, a grown ass woman reading juvenile fiction. Some things: 1. I'd forgotten how all these books start with a massive info dump about every character that appears in this series, even the ones that don't appear in this book. Did "show, not tell" not exist during my childhood. 2. I used to consider Claudia my fashion inspiration and I now realize that she would look like an idiot in real life. 3. Dawn is written like what would happen if someone googled "what kind of things do hippies like?" and "stereotypical Californian". 4. Nobody would enjoy babysitting these kids. Especially not a teenager. These kids are obnoxious as shit. There's one who speaks in rhyme. Do you know what you'd do if you were around a child who spoke in rhyme? You'd drop kick them. 5. The entire plot of these book could be resolved in 8 minutes if anyone talked to anyone. 6. Logan takes his shirt off and his 12 year old boy nipples scandalize Mary Ann. Uncomfortable. 7. Mary Ann doesn't know where her mother's grave is. That's some fucked up parenting. 8. I've completely forgotten how to read cursive writing. It's 2017. Decision: Do not keep pile.

  • Angel
    2019-02-04 07:46

    The Babysitters ClubMary Ann and The Secret In The AtticAuthor Ann M. MartinI loved the book Mary Ann and the secret in the attic it was secretive and full of surprises.The main characters in this book is Mary Anne Spier, Dawn Shafer, Richard Spier, Her grandparents Verna and Bill. Mary Ann had a dream about her when she was a baby she was yelling for her mama she was also holding a kitten and she wants to know more so she goes up into the attic of hers and dawns house and looks in some boxes to see if she can find anything about her mom and she finds pictures of her with these old man and woman and she doesn't know who they are then she starts reading the letters she finds out that those people she was with in the pictures were her grandparents. One day she heard a phone call and her father picks it up so she does to and listens on to the conversation and she’s wondering if her grandmother was sorry to give and want her back. She wants to know more answers even when she’s babysitting.so she tells her father and her stepsister Dawn and friends. I think i liked this book because i like books with secrets and hiding family pasts. People should read this book because they might like to read secretive books with surprises inside.

  • Sarah B
    2019-02-16 11:31

    This is probably one of my favorite BSC books. It made sense to me that Mary Anne wouldn't want to talk to Richard about what she found and I adored the fact that none of the BSC really pushed her to talk about what was bugging her; they just let her tell when she was ready. The census taker part was kind of funny, too.

  • Maria Elmvang
    2019-02-02 14:26

    - Mary Anne not talking to her Dad right away. Sheesh, when will these girls LEARN?!?!+ learning more about Mary Anne's history.- wondering if that history will ever be referred to again in later series.+ the letter from Mary Anne's mother. Very, very sweet.

  • Lisa
    2019-02-01 11:25

    Sometimes Mary Anne is far too wishy washy for me, but this book is perfect Mary Anne. I love the family history aspect, and think this is a great book for young girls. One day I hope to have a daughter that I can share these with.

  • Kate
    2019-01-30 09:41

    Mary Anne has uncovered a mystery from her past - did her father abandon her after her mother died? Who are these strange old people holding her as a baby?

  • Sally
    2019-02-10 13:49

    I actually found this bit of backstory for Mary Anne to be quite interesting. And I was never that huge on Mary Anne.

  • Kerri
    2019-01-21 07:54

  • Deborah Harris
    2019-02-15 10:52

    AR Quiz No. 19355 EN FictionAccelerated Reader Quiz Information IL: MG - BL: 4.4 - AR Pts: 4.0Accelerated Reader Quiz Type Information AR Quiz Types: RP

  • Amanda Kay
    2019-01-21 08:30

    I don't really remember much about this one... read it in 1997

  • Kimberly
    2019-01-23 13:29

    I'm not sure this book should have been a mystery. I enjoyed it nevertheless.

  • Helen Falcon
    2019-02-05 14:50

    OkI think this was an OK book. When I bought it I thought it would be more exciting. I though the secret was going to be very shocking like something about her mother.

  • Sarah Smith
    2019-01-28 09:45

    I loved the series as a kid. I never read them in order because the library didn't have all of them. I think my favs were the Super Specials.

  • Maria
    2019-01-17 11:34

    I liked the Mystery ones so much I continued to read them once I had moved on from Babysitters club to bigger (and some may say better) things.

  • Donna
    2019-02-16 12:49

    Charlotte Johanssen? So that's why ScarJo's name always sounded so familiar to me...

  • Samantha
    2019-02-15 14:47

    I remember vaguely reading this one as a kid, but I had forgotten the finer details of it. I remember that Mary Anne found out about her grandmother, Verna, in Maynard, Iowa but that was about it. I only honestly remembered that much because the grandmother turns up again in other books, or at least in BSC In The USA.I can understand Mary Anne at the beginning of this book, and I even feel sort of bad for her. All the kids are working on projects for Heritage Day, and Charlotte Johannsen has loads of great stuff. Pictures, letters, even a diary from her great-grandmother. It makes Mary Anne long to know more about her mother, so she goes snooping. She finds a lot of photographs and some letters that leave her feeling pretty confused, and ultimately she does confront her father. He explains everything, and life goes on.The Heritage day B-plot was actually pretty interesting! I would have loved that sort of project as a kid, made me a little jealous to be honest! The best part of the entire book though is when Logan takes shirt off and Kristy responds with "WOO!" Atta girl, Kristy!

  • Alex
    2019-02-01 11:40

    I still absolutely love this book. Oh, and the scene with the "social worker" still cracks me up!

  • Richelle
    2019-02-08 12:36

    I remember the cover of this one, but I don't actually remember reading it. But I'm pretty sure I did.

  • Amie
    2019-02-02 08:48

    I remember reading this as a kid. I knew MA had a grandmother on a farm in another state, but the details were fuzzy. Turns out the reason for that is her entire experience in Iowa isn't really chronicled. The last chapter is a series of letters back and forth with the BSC and her dad. It's sweet, but it felt anticlimactic. I think Mary Anne's book covers more of it, but I could be wrong. I wish she'd talked to Claudia's parents about her mom. I think it's sad that none of the BSC members feel comfortable talking with them about anything. How standoffish must they be? I've seen a custody battle between grandparents and spouses of children who passed. It ain't pretty. I don't believe for a second MA's grandparents would drop her after losing custody. The Heritage Day subplot is kinda cute, and somewhat believable. I can see an elementary school assigning kids a project to connect with a town event.

  • Jenny
    2019-02-04 09:37

    19/255 original4 good topic4 fast read 3 plot3 opinion