The Baby-Sitters Club Wiki
The Baby-Sitters Club Wiki

Dawn is the first book in the California Diaries series and is written by Dawn Schafer.

Back Cover Summary[]

What kind of friend am I? Actually, I think I mean what kind of person am I? What kind of friend, sister, stepsister, daughter, stepdaughter? I'm not always a very good person. I know that.

But sometimes I can't help it.


At Vista, eighth graders are required to write personal journals about their experiences. Meet thirteen-year-old Dawn Schafer, the crunchy and health conscious member of the Baby-Sitters Club, who has returned to California to live with her father, stepmother, and brother.

Dawn is thrilled to be reunited with her old friends Sunny, Maggie, and Jill. It’s not always easy to keep the group together, though; things are changing fast since they moved the eighth-grade classes into the high school.

With new social demands and decisions to make, Dawn sees just how much her old friends have changed since she moved away or is she the one who is different now?

It’s time for this independent girl to let go of the life she had across the country and figure out just where she belongs now.


Dawn's Family




Pop Culture and Real Life References[]

  • Arnold Schwarzenegger, John Travolta, Demi Moore, and Gwyneth Paltrow (actors)
  • Disney movies: Pocahontas, The Little Mermaid, Mary Poppins
  • Pollyanna, Babe, Pretty in Pink (movies)

Continuity and Inconsistencies[]



  • Sunny mentions that she and Dawn would bring an overnight bag to sleepovers with candy when neither of them eat sweets.
  • The Hendersons made bacon for the girls when everyone is said to be vegetarians in Dawn and the We ♥️ Kids Club.


  • On the dedication page it says: "For Laura."
  • This is the second journal that Dawn started writing in this school year.
  • Sunny's mom feels sick from her chemo.
  • Maggie has turned herself around into Ms. Perfection after being rebellious.
  • Jill wears a sweatshirt with a giant unicorn on the front of it on the eighth graders' first day in the High School building.
  • Jack goes on a business trip to Toledo Ohio for ten days.
  • Dawn doesn't miss Mary Anne and her friends in Connecticut as much as she thought she would.
  • Jeff wishes that he's an only child sometimes.
  • Dawn doesn't miss baby-sitting.
  • Sunny gets her belly button pierced.
  • The Bergens live next to Jill and her family, they're the contact of who Jill goes to in case of an emergency.
  • Amalia is first introduced in this book.
  • Jeff is having problems with his soccer coach.
  • Dr. Barnat is Carol's new gynecologist.
  • Carol isn't very excited about her pregnancy at first, implying that it was not planned.
  • Dawn's favorite name for a girl is Ashleigh.
  • Jill is no longer friends with Dawn.