Do you remember how fricking amazing book orders were? That red, white and yellow catalog made of cheap paper that your teacher would distribute. You’d circle way too many, whittle it down to a choice few, the Scholastic boxes would come one day MONTHS later, and your teacher would refuse to open them until the end of the day, because she knew – SHE KNEW – that once those boxes were open, all learning would be lost for the rest of the day.
We’ve got the front page of a book order from 1995 to help you pick which of the selections you should Buy, Borrow, or Bypass. If Book Riot had been around in 1995, maybe this article would be more timely. But we weren’t, so we’re here for you now.
Never Hit a Ghost With a Baseball Bat by Eth (yes, Eth) Clifford is set at a TROLLEY-CAR MUSEUM, because 1994 knew how to live. Described by one of two reviews on Amazon as “a weaker entry” in the Onetree sisters series because the author somehow shockingly failed to make the trolley-car museum “interesting,” Never Hit a Ghost With a Baseball Bat is a definite borrow, although 49 copies are available on Amazon for one cent each. If neither of the sisters climbs up and sings Clang! Clang! Clang! Went the Trolley in the course of this book, then they do not know how to properly appreciate a trolley museum. Borrow.
It Came from Beneath the Sink! by R.L. Stine. The 30th entry in the Goosebumps series has buy written all over it as you circle it on your Scholastic form and come up with a solid argument to convince your mom to get it for you (“R.L. Stine writes for Eureeka’s Castle, Mom, so yeah, I’m pretty sure he’s well-respected”). This book is legit about an evil creature that disguises itself as a dish sponge. Why isn’t it immediately on your shelf. Buy.
Hands Around Lincoln School by Frank Asch. While the ladies on the cover are sporting some A+ 1995 fashion, their friendship being threatened by one of them getting too “radical” about her 6th grade Save the Earth Club can’t beat a trolley museum and a possessed sponge. Bypass.
Honorable mention goes to the novelization of Dumb and Dumber, Beardance, and Disney’s Magic Eye. I’m sure they’re all great. Especially the Magic Eye one. Kids not old enough to be aware of things in the early ‘90s – Magic Eye pictures were everywhere and everyone loved them. Everyone. Except the people who could never see the picture. They were pretty irritable during those years.