Awkward by Svetlana Chmakova
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Awkward has been a favorite in my classroom all year and I'm just getting to it in preparation for book club next year. I'm so glad I read it. It has a cast of diverse characters as two clubs, Art Club and Science Club, battle it out for a spot at the school's club fair. Penelope (Peppi) is in Art Club and on her first day at school, she did the most terrible thing to this kid who tried to help her and she's trying to say she's sorry--still trying. As she finally begins to be friends with the boy, Jaime, she realizes he's in Science Club. How can they be friends if their friends hate one another?
Peppi isn't a flawless character, which I appreciate. She makes a lot of mistakes and her friends make a lot of mistakes. Luckily, they learn a lot from their mistakes and also how to save their club.
The teachers are also lovely. I loved the Science teacher. She's very strict, orderly, and possibly a ninja in a previous career? There are many rumors surrounding her and how terrifying she is--even though she isn't and helps out our main character multiple times.
A second book recently came out about another student in Art Club and it looks fabulous. I'd love to hear about all these characters eventually and hope this becomes a longer series.