The Babysitters Coven
By Kate Williams
Published September 17, 2019 by Delacorte Press
Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed novel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil.
Seventeen-year-old Esme Pearl has a babysitters club. She knows it’s kinda lame, but what else is she supposed to do? Get a job? Gross. Besides, Esme likes babysitting, and she’s good at it.
And lately Esme needs all the cash she can get, because it seems like destruction follows her wherever she goes. Let’s just say she owes some people a new tree.
Enter Cassandra Heaven. She’s Instagram-model hot, dresses like she found her clothes in a dumpster, and has a rebellious streak as gnarly as the cafeteria food. So why is Cassandra willing to do anything, even take on a potty-training two-year-old, to join Esme’s babysitters club?
The answer lies in a mysterious note Cassandra’s mother left her: “Find the babysitters. Love, Mom.”
Turns out, Esme and Cassandra have more in common than they think, and they’re about to discover what being a babysitter really means: a heroic lineage of superpowers, magic rituals, and saving the innocent from seriously terrifying evil. And all before the parents get home.
The Babysitters Coven is so much fun. It’s got a definite Buffy the Vampire Slayer feel to it (and one of the characters actually references the similarity of their situation to Buffy).
Esme is a typical teen just trying to get through high school. She’s neither popular nor unpopular, and she and her best friend stay mostly under the radar, spending their spare time babysitting. When new girl at school Cassandra wants to join their babysitters club, Esme is a little surprised. When she figures that Cassandra has no experience with kids and is a totally incompetent babysitter, she’s really confused. But Esme is also confused by weird stuff that’s happening around her, stuff that she seems to be making happen. And Cassandra apparently has the same problem.
I really enjoyed this book. It’s funny, fast-paced, and very self-aware (it’s got a very Buffy vibe, and that’s actually acknowledged in the book). Esme is a great character. She’s a typical teen dealing with some very atypical stuff. Cassandra is much more of a loose cannon (the Faith to Esme’s Buffy), but she was orphaned as a young child and grew up in the foster care system, so she hasn’t had the stable parental influence that Esme has from her dad (but not her mother, who has been institutionalized since Esme was a small child). I thought the contrast between the two characters worked really well.
This is the start of a series, and I’m interested to see where things go.
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley.