And nothing is more scary than being a new kid at Westchester Country Day for the 8th grade. This book doesn't exactly have a goal to it, but it's not horrid and random like Dick Francis' Field of 13. It's mostly about starting off what it's like in the life of Nikki Maxwell, with a little sister who's scared of the tooth fairy, a father who's the school's bug exterminator, and a mom that's nice but doesn't exactly always agree with Nikki. If there is one goal however, it's to get close to one of the coolest kids in school, a photographer for the school newspaper named Brandon Roberts, who isn't the big obnoxious letdown some might expect. Most of all though, is trying to survive life with the biggest CCP teen (Cue, Cool and Popular) or should I say CCPO, for obnoxious, named Mackenzie Hollister, who also has the hots for Brandon.
I remember I read this to my family when we were sitting down at our pool in the shade. And I have to admit, I kind of enjoyed it. The biggest thing this book has going for it is Rachel Renee Russell's sketches. They might as well be the best artwork in a picture book I've ever seen. Trust me, they mostly look better than the front cover illustration. Plus, Rachel has also created a great fashion model for girls. The way Nikki writes makes readers really feel with the girl. Sometimes, though, she, and the whole book, end up taking a few bumps. Maybe it's just because I'm a boy, but I found it dumb when Nikki makes a video showing how to make a hearing aid disguised as a phone as a plan to talk about global warming. I know I'm not a teacher, but I could feel the F raining down on her. And sometimes the book feels like since it's just basically introducing the characters, it drags on a little bit. Plus, almost every time Nikki says "I just said that inside my head,", I felt it was a missed opportunity to get a reaction.
I certainly didn't hate the book though, and I guess I read the book fast enough to read the rest. In fact, I've read all 8. So expect a review of the 2nd Dork Diaries book sometime. But for Part 1, what I say is: "The book is like a dream Nikki has during a dramatic part: She's in her pyjamas with a ton of library books in her hand running away from two witches on Nikki's special pen the size of a broomstick, and the evil Mackenzie spitting bugs out of her mouth towards her. All that demonstrates what Nikki is hating and it's not really as bad as she, aka the narrator, thinks. Plus, also like her two best friends' ambition to run away from home because of a D in a gym exercise, the first instalment of the hilarious Dork Diaries franchise, to me, flaps more than it flies.