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Teen Birthday Party Drama: Review of Dork Diaries #13 Birthday Drama! by Rachel Renee Russell

October 16, 2018

Some incredibly exciting news for 10+ readers: the thirteenth and latest book in the wildly popular Dork Diaries series by #1 New York Times bestselling author Rachel Renee Russell, is here! The premise of these books may seem simple – a teen girl dealing with friendships, frenemies, parents, some bullying and the odd crush – however with 37 million copies sold worldwide, Dork Diaries is obviously a winning formula.

Written in a diary format with illustrations throughout, these books are filled with high drama and take a humorous look at the complexities of teen life.

In Dork Diaries: Birthday Drama, Nikki and her two BFFs Chloe and Zoey are planning the ultimate teen birthday party that will set them all up socially for the year to come. After much discussion they settle on an island luau party at the new local pool with a DJ, lots of great snacks, tropical decorations and costumes for the 100 guests they plan on inviting. Nikki is also hoping to impress Brandon, her good friend who could be something more, she has decided.

However, there is one slight problem: Nikki has $8.73 in her piggy bank and while party planner extraordinaire Chloe has trimmed the party budget, they are drastically short of the $500 needed. Mum has a few ideas on how to keep the budget down like having the celebration in the back yard complete with live accordion music from neighbour Mrs Wallabanger and belly dancing senior citizens – add to that a birthday cake made by her little sister and you have a disaster on your hands.

After deciding the party going ahead in its current form would be the social kiss of death, Nikki decides to cancel but it appears the invites have already gone out!

Now Nikki must either cancel the party or find a way to pay for it. Complications abound when she also has to decide to stay with her friends and Brandon over the summer or go on a trip to Paris. What’s a girl to do?

Tween readers will enjoy going along for the ride with Nikki and if this is their first taste of the series, then you know that 12 other great books await them. Lots of resources are available to use with these books and if you go to the Dork Diaries website you’ll find competitions, a look at fan art, writing tips and activities.

If your little reader has enjoyed Diary of a Wimpy Kid or Timmy Failure they will love Dork Diaries especially as the story is told by a girl rather than boy.

Purchase a copy of Dork Diaries: Birthday Drama | Read an extract

Rachel Renee Russell is a lawyer who prefers writing children’s books to legal briefs (mainly because books are a lot more fun and pyjamas and bunny slippers aren’t allowed in court). She has raised two daughters and lived to tell about it. Rachel lives in northern Virginia with a spoiled pet Yorkie who terrorises her daily by climbing on top of her computer and pelting her with stuffed animals while she writes. And, yes, Rachel considers herself a total Dork.


  1. Alexander Bolt

    I love dork Diaries

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