ISBN 0590406426 - Written for ages 8-12, and obviously aimed at girls, The Sleepover Friends series isn't fantastic but it's good enough to keep girls reading and that is enough to earn it good marks.
Fifth graders Kate, Lauren, Stephanie and Patti are great friends and sleep over at each other's houses every weekend. In this second book of the series, the girls are at Kate's when a TV contest catches Stephanie's attention - if they can figure it out, they can be in a music video and THAT will get Michael Pastore's attention, for sure! Stephanie also decides to go out for the class play, dragging shy Patti along. One way or another, she's sure Michael will notice her, but when tryouts for the play are held, she becomes tongue-tied and ruins her own plan. Worse, Patti got the part she wanted. WORST, Michael seems to like Patti - and Stephanie blames Patti! It's only book #2, but it looks like this might be the end of the Sleepover Friends!
A little silly and overly dramatic, but really dead-on for fifth grade behavior. I like this series and hope to come across more of Saunders' work. There were a few badly written moments - Stephanie is credited with coming up with the idea of wearing a sweatshirt, basically, as pants, with the sleeves used for legs. No explanation of how the neck-hole, now a very big hole in the crotch of these "pants" would figure in. On one page, Lauren catches on to the practical joke played by Stephanie's cousin and DOESN'T drink the soda that he poured oil into; two pages later, she says she'll never forget the taste of oily soda. These are the kinds of details that should be simple to handle and an ability to handle details is what usually makes a books series successful, so I do hope Saunders proves me wrong by coming through in future books.