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Berrybrook Middle School Books In Order

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Publication Order of Berrybrook Middle School Books

Awkward (2015)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Brave (2017)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Crush (2018)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Diary (2019)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Time Capsule (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Captain's Log (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
New Girl (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

The “Berrybrook Middle School” series of novels are written by award winning and internationally published comic/manga author Svetlana Chmakova. The author has more than ten works to her name that have been translated into more than a dozen languages.

The author was born and brought up in Russia but as a sixteen year old she moved to Canada where she finished her schooling. She then earned her Classical Animation diploma at Sheridan College.

Svetlana is what you would call an accidental writer and artist even though she was always interested in toy designs, how to draw, manga and comics and had also written and drawn for animation. Her most popular work was “Dramacon,” the romantic comedy that went on to become a fan favorite.

She is also the author of “Nightschool,” the award-winning urban fantasy and wrote the manga adaptation of the “Witch & Wizard,” that would become a New York Times bestselling title. She has won several awards over the years including making the list of Library Journal’s Top 10 Graphic Novels of 2015.

The “Berrybrook Middle School” series of novels by Svetlana Chmakova is a set of brilliant stories that explore the difficulty of dealing with choices and emotions during the teenage years. They are a joy to read with their well developed characters that are so relatable combined with beautiful illustrations.
When she is not writing and drawing, she can be found reading books , sleeping, eating and riding the subway at high noon when it is half full of all manner of interesting people. She often weaves the many stories she collects from her experiences into her graphic novels.

Svetlana Chmakova’s novels in the “Berrybrook Middle School” series are written in a believable and clear voice.
One of the best things about these stories is the multicultural diversity of the characters. There are characters that are differently abled and from different ethnicities all having fun and studying in the same middle school setting.

The author is an excellent storyteller that incorporates messages of understanding and kindness into her stories in what is a very organic way. It does seem like she took a lot of time carefully considering the placement of images and text.

The lettering and illustrations are fun, bright, and playful making for superb graphic novels that depict the natural awkwardness of most adolescents.
The first novel of the series tells the story of a girl named Penelope Torres that only came to Berrybrook in the recent past. All she wants is to reconcile the science and art clubs so that she can get to hang out with Jaime, her friend.

The second novel tells the story of wannabe astronaut Jensen Graham and how he learns how to stand up to his peers for himself.
The third novel in the series is the story of a teen with a heart of gold in Jorge Ruiz. Over the course of the novel he develops a crush on Jazmine Duong even as he tries to avoid making any bad decisions despite peer pressure.

“Awkward,” the first novel of the “Awkward” series of novels, is set at a school where Peppi Torres is a new student. She knows that the first rule to surviving is to not get noticed by the bullies and to seek out and join groups with similar interests.

She was keeping these rules in mind but still trips into Jaime Thompson, a quiet boy in the hall and in the process breaks the first rule. Once the bullies hear of it, they begin calling her the nerder girlfriend leaving her in a conundrum as to how to solve the crisis.

Embarrassed, she abandons her new friend Jaime and decides to join the art club where she can surround herself with friends with a similar interest. But she cannot get over her despicable treatment of Jaime.

Things have become awkward between them since, which is made worse by the fact that he is a member of the science club, the biggest rival of the art club. When the clubs go to war, she realizes that surviving middle school sometimes has to do with breaking the rules.

The second novel 0f the Berrybrook Middle School series of novels is “Brave.” The charming world of the series just gets bigger as one of the kids gets to learn how to develop courage and boldness.

Jensen had always held fantasies that he was a hero that saved his friends and the world on the regular. But the reality is that he does not get along with his friends and mathematics is a subject he cannot get a good grasp of.

He often gets picked last for school projects which is always demoralizing as he often gets the worst partners or none at all. Things get even worse when he is drawn into the whirlwind of club drama, social experiment projects and school news by Akilah and Jenny, the dynamic duo that run the school newspaper.
Jensen is a kid that always preferred to play the games one level at a time but now the duo have set the difficulty setting higher than what he believes he can handle. Will he finally be able to achieve his daylight fantasies and become a hero, or will he need to come up with real life solutions for his very real problems.

“Crush” by Svetlana Chmakova is the third novel of the “Berrybrook Middle School” series of novels. The lead in this work is Jorge, a kid taller than most kids in his class who uses his big body to intimidate everyone to do things for him. But then he finds himself strongly attracted to a drama club girl.
He is struggling to sort the feelings he does not understand even as he navigates a minefield of politics and schoolwork.
The best thing about the work is its focus on body autonomy and how important it is to respect personal spaces. It is a theme that echoes throughout the entire novel and makes for quite an informative and interesting read.

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