2 out of 5 stars
I keep waiting for a really good Jessi book and it just hasn't happened yet. There's another new kid in town or rather, back in town. Derek Masters is a TV legend (in the 7-14 age range) who has moved back to Stoneybrook from LA for a few months. I'm not really sure why his parents keep uprooting him and his younger brother...if they picked one place and stayed there, he probably wouldn't have all these problems making friends. I'm getting ahead of myself though.
Okay. Becca, Jessi's sister, is obsessed with this TV show called P.S. 162 and tells Jessi all about the one kid Derek who used to live in Stoneybrook. Well Jessi thinks this is the most amazing thing in the world and starts doing all this research to learn about him and basically starts a scrapbook chronicling his career. Okay, not really that last part but it's pretty close. She gets Mallory to tell her everything she knows from Nicky, who was in the same class, and hey, I just realized that's supposed to be the triplets on the cover. Weird.
At the BSC meeting, Derek's mom calls and explains that they're back in town and need a baby-sitter. Lo and behold, Jessi gets the job and flips her lid. Oh and there's a fairly tame What Claudia is Wearing that I nerded up a little. :)
So Jessi is super excited to baby-sit Derek because he's going to be totally rad and just like his character on the show and ZOMG...or not. Come on Jessi, grow up. There's a reason you're just an Associate Member and can only baby-sit in the afternoon. Derek is just a normal kid who wants to fit in at his new school but can't because all the girls are googly-eyed over him and the boys think it's hilarious that he wears makeup on-set. Jessi does her best to help him fit in (inviting kids over to play, taking him to the Pike Lost Children's Center, etc...) but he seems to still be having trouble with John, the titular SuperBrat.
John does nasty things like stealing Derek's homework, tying his shoelaces together and throwing his lunch all over the cafeteria. But who is this John? That is the question. Nicky Pike doesn't know him, the BSC has never heard of him and they obviously know every kid under the age of 13 in the tri-state area. Are you ready for this? Derek IS John. No!? Yes!! ;) Typical kid stuff, he makes up an imaginary enemy to take the blame for all the bad things that he has actually been doing. Once he starts making friends, "John" kind of goes away until the end when Jessi is like "hey? Where'd that little bully go?" Why didn't Derek ever get in trouble at school for doing this stuff though?
B-side story takes place in Jessi's ballet world where she is trying out for a part in "Swan Lake" and is desperate to get it but thinks there is no chance at all. So she lets Derek convince her she could be a model/actress and her parents actually let her call all these agencies getting info and stuff. Really? I'd be like, "I am not your
damn blasted chauffeur. You can do that stuff when you can drive!" I mean, she's 11 years old! She hasn't even gone through frigging puberty yet! Anyway, Jessi ends up getting the part (of course) and realizes that ballet is what she wants to do and gives up on the other stuff. And Derek gets some new movie part and moves back to LA early. Another one hit wonder kid in BSCLand.