________________ CM . . . . Volume XXI Number 24 . . . . February 27, 2015


Pippa Morgan’s Diary.

Annie Kelsey. Illustrated by Kate Larson.
Toronto, ON: Scholastic Canada, 2014.
161 pp., trade pbk., $6.99.
ISBN 978-1-4431-4275-5.

Grades 2-5 / Ages 7-10.

Review by Janet Beauchamp.

*** /4


“Have you ever lost your best friend? Well, don’t. It’s the WORST. Mum gave me this diary. She said writing stuff down would “help me process my feelings of loss.”???

Writing stuff down is basically homework, but here goes…



After Pippa’s best friend, Rachel, moves away, Pippa struggles to figure out who to hang out with. Mr. Bacon notices that she stays inside for recess to write in her diary… the one her mom gave her to process her feelings about Rachel’s moving away. Mr. Bacon sees an issue and asks Catie Brown, the most popular girl in school, to sit beside Pippa. Nothing Pippa does or says seems to interest Catie until Pippa, before she can stop herself, lies and tells Catie that she auditioned for the show Voice Factor. Catie and her friends are so intrigued by Pippa’s experience that she is actually invited to sit at their lunch table and to have a play date at Catie’s house. Pippa’s anxiety increase as Catie keeps trying to get Pippa to sing for her.

     Readers are along for the ride just waiting until Pippa’s lie comes to light. The story is written in a series of diary entries which helps readers truly understand the roller coaster of emotions Pippa is experiencing. The text is accompanied by some sketch illustrations which help bring the story to life.

     Pippa’s predicament becomes dire when Catie signs her up for the school talent show. She is a terrible singer, and her friends think she is going to WIN IT ALL!! All the while, Pippa is also trying to adjust to her parents’ divorce. Stress!!! When the dress rehearsal day arrives, Pippa decides to do the worst thing possible: she SINGS!! While the ending is a little predictable, the author does an effective job of making the outcome believable. There is a definite opportunity for a teachable moment after this book is done as not all lies work out as nicely as this one did.


Janet Beauchamp, the mother of three girls, is a high school teacher and teacher-librarian and lives in L’Amable, ON.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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