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Mary Anne and the Music Box Secret

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Cleaning up Granny and Pop-Pop's basement, Mary Anne finds a tightly wrapped package that contains a surprising secret from the past. Cleaning up Granny and Pop-Pop's basement, Mary Anne finds a tightly wrapped package that contains a surprising secret from the past.


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Cleaning up Granny and Pop-Pop's basement, Mary Anne finds a tightly wrapped package that contains a surprising secret from the past. Cleaning up Granny and Pop-Pop's basement, Mary Anne finds a tightly wrapped package that contains a surprising secret from the past.

30 review for Mary Anne and the Music Box Secret

  1. 5 out of 5

    Shira

    in this relatively mundane mystery by ghostwriter Ellen Miles (at least mundane compared to some of the ridiculously elaborate ones she’s given us lately), mary anne’s stepgrandparents granny and pop-pop go on a cruise for their anniversary. their house floods, so sharon enlists mary anne and other bsc members to help clean up and ready the house for them to come back when the cruise ends. mary anne finds a box behind a loose wall panel with a note that says not to open the box or you will be cu in this relatively mundane mystery by ghostwriter Ellen Miles (at least mundane compared to some of the ridiculously elaborate ones she’s given us lately), mary anne’s stepgrandparents granny and pop-pop go on a cruise for their anniversary. their house floods, so sharon enlists mary anne and other bsc members to help clean up and ready the house for them to come back when the cruise ends. mary anne finds a box behind a loose wall panel with a note that says not to open the box or you will be cursed. she does it anyway and finds a music box that plays twinkle twinkle little star. inside the box there’s a photo with a young sailor man on it, the same sailor mary anne had seen in a dream the previous night (seriously, I think this might be an episode of are you afraid of the dark or something). the photo has a note on the back addressed to LS and signed HIW. mary anne asks granny over the phone if she knows anything about the music box, and she seems a little evasive but says no. contractors come to work on the house, and some of the people in the neighborhood keep buzzing around the house as well, to the point that the bsc can tell they’re looking for something. sharon uncovers some of granny’s letters to her cousin from when she was a teenager, and mary anne discovers some interesting things about the history of granny and pop-pop’s house. granny grew up in the house next door and wrote tons of letters about the girl next door, lydia, (who lived in the house that is now granny and pop-pop’s house) and her boyfriend drama and family drama. she was in love with a blue-eyed boy that her dad didn’t approve of. mary anne is convinced that lydia is LS and the blue-eyed boy is the sailor boy from her dream/the photo in the music box. from the letters mary anne also discovers that lydia’s father worked for the bank and had been embezzling money. one day he was spotted digging in his backyard late at night. the contractors and neighborhood people are probably looking for the money, but turns out it’s not actually back there; they find a box and it’s all climactic and everything but nothing of any value is in there. granny comes home and mary anne figures out that she was LS (little star) and the blue-eyed sailor boy was HIW (how I wonder). they were madly in love and then he went away to war and died. mary anne says she will never tell anyone granny’s secret. so to the other bsc members it remains a mystery, sort of like how at the end of Stacey and the Mystery Money stacey knows that the family are secret service and have to use fake names but she promises not to tell anyone. oh, and lydia ended up eloping with the guy that her dad didn’t want her to be with, and apparently they’re really boring now. that's a fun little note, when star-crossed lovers get together and all the heat is gone. the subplot is that the barrett-dewitt house is finally getting renovated to be big enough for all nine of them. the contractor gives the barrett-dewitt kids a task of making a playhouse. no real highlights. this book was boring. it was never terrible, but it was never interesting or engaging. lowlights/nitpicks: -they assemble the playhouse within the shed, and once it’s done it won’t fit out the shed door. why did they assemble it inside the shed when it would obviously be impossible to take outside after that? I know weather conditions are not always great and all but it's not like they build houses within houses. isn't that what tarps are for? -claudia eats a "lite" three musketeers bar -- I did research and I'm pretty sure this has never existed. there have been some eras of packaging where the three musketeers says "45% less fat!" on the label, but if you read the small print, it says "45% less fat than other leading candy bars" claudia and stacey’s doing housework outfits: -"Claudia had on her favorite painter's pants. They used to be white, but she's worn them during so many art projects that they are now splattered with paint in every color of the rainbow. To complement the pants, Claudia wore a tie-dyed shirt she made herself that features a huge yellow peace sign surrounded by starbursts of orange, red, and purple. She also had on her red high-top sneakers, and she had braided her hair in two pigtails, tied with purple ribbons, to keep it tidy and out of the way." -"Stacey was wearing a pair of pink denim overall shorts with a white baby T underneath. Purple Doc Martens and a white baseball cap -- with her ponytail pulled through the back -- completed the look." snacks in claudia’s room: -doritos (n.s.) -three musketeers (n.s.) -lite three musketeers (n.s.)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Ciara

    i found this book so obnoxious & confusing. the plotline in a nutshell: granny & pop pop (sharon's parents, dawn's maternal grandparents) are going on a cruise for their wedding anniversary. the day after they leave, their house floods & it needs a lot of repair work. the babysitters club pitches in with the clean-up, & in the process, mary anne finds an old jewelry box hidden away. it contains a photograph of a young solider in a world war 2 navy uniform. the plumber & building contractor worki i found this book so obnoxious & confusing. the plotline in a nutshell: granny & pop pop (sharon's parents, dawn's maternal grandparents) are going on a cruise for their wedding anniversary. the day after they leave, their house floods & it needs a lot of repair work. the babysitters club pitches in with the clean-up, & in the process, mary anne finds an old jewelry box hidden away. it contains a photograph of a young solider in a world war 2 navy uniform. the plumber & building contractor working on the house are also acting suspicious, as is granny & pop pop's friend hank. the babysitters think the suspicious behavior may be linked to the mysterious music box, but it's not. the dudes are acting weird because they heard an old rumor that there is a box of embezzled money buried in granny & pop pop's yard, & they are hoping to find it. the music box belongs to granny. it was a gift from her first love, frank, who left to fight in world war 2 & was killed. so here's what bothered me about the book: i just read dawn's book, which features an entire section on how sharon flew granny & pop pop to san francisco for the 50th wedding anniversary. dawn was ten then; she's 13 now. so this must be granny & pop pop's 53rd wedding anniversary. this book was published in 1997, & we can be charitable & say it's set in 1997 as well. that means that granny & pop pop were married in 1944. the united states entered world war 2 in 1942. it is established in the book that granny met her world war 2 beau when she was about 13 years old. so in order for it to be plausible for granny to have met frank at age 13, have him die in the war, & then marry pop pop in time for 1997 to be their 53rd wedding anniversary, granny & frank must have dated for at least three years. then frank went off to war & he either died right away, giving granny a reasonable mourning period before marrying pop pop, or she just moved on really, really quickly after his death. also complicating this tidy little narrative is the fact that sharon establishes in dawn's book that granny & pop pop are between 75 & 80 years old on their 50th wedding anniversary. let's give them the benefit of the doubt & say that sharon was exaggerating & they are in fact 75 years old now on their 53rd anniversary. that would mean they married in 1944 at age 22. which would mean that granny in fact dated frank, the world war 2 dude, for at least SEVEN YEARS before he went off to war & died. confusing, eh? also, the book says that granny & pop pop moved into their house as newlyweds. so they have been living there for 53 years. granny grew up in the house next door. she used to spy on her neighbor, a glamorous older girl named lydia bailey. lydia's father worked for a bank & is the individual accused of embezzling money & burying it in the backyard. jim, the plumber that sharon hires to replace the burst pipes, informs sharon that he lived across the street as a child & had a good friend who lived in granny & pop pop's house. he does not seem familiar with the bailey embezzling story from anything other than his father's stories, so we must assume that jim's family lived in the house across the street during the bailey era, but jim was too young to remember it. if granny is 75 now & was 13 during the embezzling scandal, this would have been 62 years ago...1935. questions are raised about a banker embezzling money during the height of the great depression, but moving on. let's say the baileys moved out right after this scandal & a new family with a playmate for young jim moved in. they would have lived there for about nine years, because they had to clear out by 1944 for granny & pop pop to move in. i guess that's enough time for jim to get old enough to have a friend he remembers, & then his family moved away at around the same time that granny & pop pop moved in. but that would still make him over sixty years old. at the end of the book, jim's father makes an appearance, searching for the buried treasure in granny & pop pop's yard. assuming he was not a teen father, he would have to be in his mid-80s. & yet, he was sneaking around granny & pop pop's yard, digging holes & knocking over trash cans? dubious. very dubious. once you do all the math, everything more or less checks out (save for the confusion over exactly how long granny & frank dated). but it was still distracting & annoying, & the mystery sucked.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Logan Hughes

    It's the mystery nobody asked for, one centering on Granny and Pop-pop, Mary Anne's step-grandparents. While Granny and Pop-pop's house is being renovated, Mary Anne finds an old music box in the wall. It's full of cryptic love letters, and she tries to figure out who they belonged to and what they mean through Research into the home's former owners. I'll give this book credit for constructing the type of mystery that a 13-year-old could credibly solve, but it's also really boring. There's also It's the mystery nobody asked for, one centering on Granny and Pop-pop, Mary Anne's step-grandparents. While Granny and Pop-pop's house is being renovated, Mary Anne finds an old music box in the wall. It's full of cryptic love letters, and she tries to figure out who they belonged to and what they mean through Research into the home's former owners. I'll give this book credit for constructing the type of mystery that a 13-year-old could credibly solve, but it's also really boring. There's also an unexplained supernatural element that I find obnoxious (Mary Anne dreamed about the boy in the photo before seeing it). Fun Facts: "Sharon is a realtor." Have we ever known this before? I don't think I ever thought about what's Sharon's job. Granny and Pop-pop's address is 747 Bertrand Drive. In case you need it for your map of Stoneybrook. Granny's real name is Grace. Timing: "I’m enjoying those lazy, crazy days of summer vacation. August is a great month, isn’t it?"

  4. 4 out of 5

    Alex

    I’m not feeling too good, so as always I reach for a BSC book. =) I’ve always loved this one, and I have no idea why. Maybe because it was one of the few mysteries I actually owned, so I re-read it constantly? Whatever the reason, I loved it then and I love it now.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    What an exceptionally boring wild ride! The stupidest/most silly part is probably the bit when Mary Anne dreams about a starry eyed sailor, and then finds a picture of the same guy. SHE IS BEING HAUNTED.......but not really. It had nothing to do with anything else. YEEHAW!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Christina

    Read my recap at A Year with the BSC via Stoneybrook Forever: www.livethemovies.com/bsc-blog/mary-a... Read my recap at A Year with the BSC via Stoneybrook Forever: www.livethemovies.com/bsc-blog/mary-a...

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mirena Nkolova

    I started reading the book yesterday. It is a children story. A young, 13th year old girl - Mary Ann discribes a story which is getting interesting and mistery. I was interested at all details about her family's background and all her neighbours family. Mary Anne's father is a lawyer. Her mother died when she was infant. So, she doesn't remember her at all. But she has stepmother - Sharon. She is realtor and very interesting person. Verry disorganize person in her own things but in her job she is I started reading the book yesterday. It is a children story. A young, 13th year old girl - Mary Ann discribes a story which is getting interesting and mistery. I was interested at all details about her family's background and all her neighbours family. Mary Anne's father is a lawyer. Her mother died when she was infant. So, she doesn't remember her at all. But she has stepmother - Sharon. She is realtor and very interesting person. Verry disorganize person in her own things but in her job she is organize and tidy. Mary Anne's father and Sharon were dating when they were in high - school. After that the life separets them and her father met and got married for her mother but something hapend and she died. It was very hard time for her father and he send Mary Anne to his wife's parents house. After his grief, he took Mary Anne back after the custody. Mary Anne still keep in touch with them. Later on Mary Anne met a new friend - Dawn. She is her age and she came with her mother and brother from CA. Dawn and Mary Anne became fery good friends and they found out that their parents were dating when they were in high - school and actually Dawn became Mary Anne's stepsister, and Sharon is her's father new wife and her stepmother. They leave together. Very soon Sharon takes decision to go and live back in CA. That Sharon's decision hurts Mary Anne but she respect it. Now she s busy with her club BSC /baby - sitting club/. I was surprise haw strict can be 13th year old children. They have responsibility about what they do and hat they have to do. It remind me about myself when I was young. Also her stepmother parents, she call them Granny and Pop -pop, and she love them very much went on a cruise. On the nex day their house was flood. There was some plumbing problem and hte whole basement was flood. They both start cleaning and pull everything out under the sun when Mary Anne found a box with a scary mark - if somebody opens the box will be cursed!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Marian

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I know I've read this one before (I've got two copies of it no less) but it's not one of the mysteries that stood out in my memory. That said, on it's own it's a pretty good book. Sharon's parents go for a cruise to celebrate their wedding anniversary. Pretty much the moment their boat sets sail, the plumbing in their house goes crazy and there's a flood. Mary Anne offers to help (and naturally, so does the rest of the BSC) clean-up the mess. In the process, MA finds a mysterious package. Ignori I know I've read this one before (I've got two copies of it no less) but it's not one of the mysteries that stood out in my memory. That said, on it's own it's a pretty good book. Sharon's parents go for a cruise to celebrate their wedding anniversary. Pretty much the moment their boat sets sail, the plumbing in their house goes crazy and there's a flood. Mary Anne offers to help (and naturally, so does the rest of the BSC) clean-up the mess. In the process, MA finds a mysterious package. Ignoring the warnings written on the paper that's wrapped around it, MA opens it and finds a beautiful music box. Inside is more of a riddle. Who are L.S. and H.I.W.? Is L.S. the girl who used to live in the house before Granny and Pop Pop moved in? Did the star-crossed lovers ever manage to stay together, or were they ripped apart by parents who didn't approve? The problem for me is that Sharon and Richard (MA's father) were broken up in high school by her disapproving parents. Would Granny have really done that to her own daughter after a) her first love was taken from her so tragically, or b) watching the girl next door go through the same thing? Really? REALLY? Because I'm thinking no. Also, for grandparents who live so close that the BSC can easily help clean-up their house, how come they're so rarely mentioned in anything other than the Chapter 2 recap of Sharon and Richard's doomed love affair?

  9. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    This mystery book was okay, but it really wasn't that exciting. I really love the babysitting books, but I didn't enjoy this one as much as the other mysteries. Hopefully, the next babysitting mysteries will be really suspenseful and exciting! This mystery book was okay, but it really wasn't that exciting. I really love the babysitting books, but I didn't enjoy this one as much as the other mysteries. Hopefully, the next babysitting mysteries will be really suspenseful and exciting!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kayla

    Mistake! In this book, Mary Anne says when she was a baby, her father sent her to live with her grandparents in Nebraska. This is the first mention of Nebraska. Her grandparents lived in Iowa.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Melenia

    Loved these books as a child

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kara

    Eh, okay. Kind of dull but realistic at least.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Amy Holcomb

    The Baby-sitters Club series was my favorite growing up! :)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kirsten

  16. 5 out of 5

    TC

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey

  18. 5 out of 5

    Elle

  19. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

  20. 5 out of 5

    Malissa

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kristin

  23. 5 out of 5

    Naomi

  24. 5 out of 5

    Shaolun Sun

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jordan

  26. 4 out of 5

    Dr. Alykhan Nanji

  27. 5 out of 5

    Alison

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jude Al Ali

  29. 4 out of 5

    Christel Franken

  30. 5 out of 5

    H

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