Simon, Coco. Katie: Batter Up!
27 December 2012, Simon Spotlight
Katie is enjoying the Cupcake Club, and looking forward to having her grandmother come and visit, but she's feeling rather out of sorts-- everyone else seems to have other interests and activities, and Katie doesn't. Making cupcakes is really her very favorite thing to do, but she knows she should try to broaden her interests. She tries a variety of sports but doesn't do very well until she tries her hand at softball. She has some talent, makes the team... and then decides that being on the team stresses her out and she doesn't really enjoy it! Her supportive mother is very understanding, although Katie has to break the news to the coach herself.
Strengths: This was quite a twist-- other than Callie Be Gold, I can't think of another book where a student wants to do fewer activities. As always, this series is perfect for middle school girls, and I enjoy how the series continues but different characters are emphasized.
Weaknesses: Katie's mother and grandmother figure very largely in this, which is a bit unusual for middle grade, where students are trying to distance themselves from parents.
Simon, Coco. Alexis: Cool as a Cupcake (Cupcake Diaries #8)
26 June 2012, Simon Spotlight
I need to order Mia's Baker's Dozen and Emma all Stirred Up, ( as well as #9, Katie and the Cupcake War) but this was on the shelf at my local library! Alexis is preparing for the big back-to-school parade that the local high school has, but she has managed to run afoul of the popular girls and isn't feel very confident. It doesn't help that the cupcake club is trying to spread the work around, but no one else is as detail oriented as Alexis, and they are constantly short of ingredients, and others don't know how much the cupcakes should be sold for in order to make a profit! Alexis' sister, Dylan, is trying to help Alexis be "cool", but Alexis just wants to join the business club, be herself, and maybe ask Matt, her friend's brother, to march in the parade with her. The girls are feeling a little fragmented-- will the Cupcake Club survive?
Strengths: Great covers, fun series with books about the different distinct characters, CUPCAKES. A good purchase in prebind for middle school.
Weaknesses: I'm done with series after five books, but my voracious readers will just be glad to see new installments!
And yes, I'm looking forward also to the next installments, but don't know why Follett has the eleventh book listed as a K-3 level.
Not yet published: This item is scheduled to be available on December 4, 2012.
Not yet published: This item is scheduled to be available on October 16, 2012.