BOOK CLUB: Dork Diaries – Birthday Drama

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Author: Rachel Renée Russell
ISBN: 978-1-4711-7315-8
RRP: $16.99
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Copy: Courtesy of the Publisher

Dork Diaries are a fun and eye-catching series for the tween in the house, and I don’t have one so I started to flick and got caught up reading the first few chapters.


Diaries are such a great storytelling tool for this age group because the pages are filled with eye-catching details and the fonts are generally a lot more fun than novels. I remember a few books written in the style from my childhood but I won’t show my age by telling you what they were.

Nikki Maxwell is back in the 13th instalment of this bestselling series with the Birthday Drama. Nikki’s BFFs are planning a mega awesome birthday party but it all comes crashing down when Mom says it’s way over budget.

Doesn’t take long for Nikki’s dream party to start looking like a dorky disaster, but can Nikki and her BFFs formulate a plan to save the day and avoid a major birthday disaster?

This is quite an easy read, sure to capture the attention of book loving tweens. I look forward to hearing what they think.

For all of your Dork Diary needs you can find the series at DorkDiaries.com and on Facebook.

Dork Diaries Birthday Drama is published by Simon & Schuster and is available through Angus & Robertson Bookworld, Booktopia and where all good books are sold.

Thanks to Simon & Schuster 10 of our Beauty and Lace Club members and their children will be reading Dork Diaries Birthday Drama so please be aware there may be spoilers in the comments below, and our reviews may be written by our young readers.

10 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: Dork Diaries – Birthday Drama

  1. Dork Diaries ‘Birthday Drama’ by Rachel Renee Russell is a hoot and with thanks I received it courtesy of Beauty & Lace and Simon & Schuster publishers.

    Well put succinctly, it’s hilarious. So well set out for kids enjoyment. It includes simple sentences and ideas put down on paper, incredible drawings, speech bubbles and emotional responses expressed simply. Each book includes simple messages – this one Nikki is celebrating her birthday and her friends are so keen to do something nice for her, take over the organising. Nikki goes along with it to keep the peace. It touches on the relatable angst of teens trying to reach popularity amongst their peers and of course the troubled relationships with your nemesis.

    There are moments of real humour that had me in stitches, along with my daughters 8 and 11. It’s rare for a book to induce real laughter but this author certainly knows how to achieve it. For example, an embarrassing yoga scene when Nikki and her mum attend a class. Recounting hilarious birthday stories involving clown pants on fire and chips stuck up kids noses appeals so well to the young reader.

    The idea of a teen being able to choose between 2 weeks holiday with a friend in Paris or a road trip with friends singing in a band isn’t at all realistic which adds to the fun and escapism for the reader. It goes along with the whole psyche of the book, it’s a lark!

    The young readers will love it.

  2. Miss (nearly) 10, was very excitedly checking the mail daily until her book club arrived. On the day it came she ran around the house screaming with excitement and read it over 2 days, then re read again.
    Her review is ‘Dork Diaries Birthday Drama was just that, a Drama! I was on edge hoping it would turn out ok. The Birthday was on off on off. It made me laugh a lot. I couldn’t wait to tell my friends all about it and everyone was jealous. My friends bought the book after I brought it into school becuase they wanted it too. We all can’t wait for the next book to come out. Thank you for my book.’ Ruby x

  3. Another great classic Dork Diaries to entertain Ms 10 and Ms12!

    From start to finish this book had us all in stitches. The trials and tribulations of trying to do something nice for your friend (in this case, throwing a birthday party) and never quite knowing if it is going all work out in the end!

    The funny stories about birthday parties gone wrong sparked a whole converstation with us about the parties we have had (and attended) which didnt go to plan, setting us all laughing again to top each story.

    The great thing about these books are the messages thread throughout the book about looking after each other, doing the right thing and soldiering on.

    Another great book!

  4. Firstly thanks to Beauty and Lace book club and Simon & Schuster for the opportunity to review this book.
    The review is by Olivia, who is 8 years old

    The Dork Diaries, Birthday Drama is about a girl named Nikki and her BFFs Chloe and Zoe. Nikki’s birthday is coming up soon and she wants to plan a Luau party, with grass skirts and Hawaiian dancing at the local swimming pool. However, it’s going to cost $400 and her mum says this is too much, and that she has to have a boring party in the backyard. Nikki is devastated, what will she do now?
    The story follows the 3 BFFs as they try to figure out a way to make the Luau party happen, will they be able to do it?
    This was the first Dork Diaries book I have read and it was amazing and so funny, I can’t wait to read more!!

  5. This was the first Dork Diaries book for us and had us giggling throughout. I read it with Miss 6 who was excited to read it especially since the main character (Nikki) has the same name as Mummy!

    I feel it was just a touch too old for my 6-year old. While she could read most of the words, some of the themes in the book were new to her. That said, her favourite part was Nikki’s birthday and my favourite part was the yoga scene. There were references to very modern things such as Fortnite and the Floss. The illustrations were great and helped set each of the scenes.

    We don’t often read long chapter books together so it was nice to be able to do this with her knowing that we would also need to review it. Thanks to Beauty and Lace and Simon Schuster for giving us the opportunity to read this.

  6. My daughter Bianca who is 6 (almost 7) read this by herself. She’s an advanced reader and this book is excellent for her because of the illustrations which entertain her and gives her a break from other books she reads. She has read another in this series before and now really enjoys them (with a lost now wanting for Christmas and her birthday). Really all I could hear from her when she read this book was so much giggling and saying ‘squeeeeee’.

    So from her, the words for the review:

    Squeeeee! OMG I thought it was a really good book. I couldn’t put it down. It reads like a diary but has more of a story line than a diary. My favourite character is Nikki who tells the story and it is her party. There’s things go wrong and it’s hilarious.

    I loved the illustrations, they really helped to set the scene of some of the funny bits of the book and know what happened at The Birthday Party. Especially my favourite part where it shows her frenemy Mackenzie who is so jealous that her head explodes. There were Birthday dramas with the invites and the party but they all have fun in the end.

    5 out of 5 stars
    I would highly recommend this book but mainly for girls.

  7. Such a great book and both my kids liked reading it. My daughter has followed all the Dork Diary books and this one was one of her favourites. (I read it too)
    Nikkis birthday was going to be the best birthday ever but when mum said it was going to cost way too much, the drama started! (such a mum thing to do and say)
    Highly recommend this for tweenage girls (even though my son read and enjoyed it too)

  8. Such a great book and my daughter loved reading it. She has all the Dork Diary books and re-read them all the time.
    The illustrations and storylines make this book most appealing to the tweens. It is an easy yet fun read about Nikki the birthday girl and the dramas that happen.

  9. Miss 9 really enjoys the adventures of Nikki in Dork diaries!

    “Birthday drama” was one of her faves- she loved how her friends Chloe and Zoey have supported Niki with her birthday plan. Even though everyone was freaking out. especially Nikkis mum! Nikki is an adorable character and my daughter can really relate to her.
    This series Rachel Rene Russell has written is so relatable and beautifully illustrated ( as with all her books)

    A great read for tweens

  10. I got this book for my daughter to read because when she was younger, around 10 or 11, she couldn’t get enough of the Dork Diaries series, devoured book after book, however she is 13 now and has moved on to more complex reads, so I would suggest that this is an excellent series for girls from roughly 8-11. Easy to read, very relatable, and hilariously funny, highly recommended.

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