Monday, January 25, 2016

Awkward by Svetlana Chmakova

 Peppi knows the rules for surviving at a new school but she ends up breaking one immediately when she gets labeled as "nerder girlfriend" by accidentally tripping over the school outcast.  Embarrassed and worried about being an outsider, Peppi shoves the boy away and runs off.  Although she's able to make new friends in the art club, Peppi feels ashamed of how she treated the boy, Jaime and wishes she could apologize.  When she needs tutoring in science she is upset to see that Jaime is her tutor.  She's still unable to say the words but the two find they have a lot in common.  They largely hide their friendship at school, however, because the art and science clubs are feuding and competing for one table at the school fair.  That's when things start to get mean and dirty.

This is a graphic novel in the vein of things by Raina Telgemeier which is a good thing since teens can't get enough of her stuff.  The characters are winning and the story reflect typical middle school struggles.  I even liked the illustrations and could easily follow the story, something that doesn't always happen with manga.  A good next step for those who have read Smile fourteen times.

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