This first book in The Cupcake Diaries is told through the perspective of Katie Brown. We find Katie miserable on the first day of middle school. Her best friend Callie came back from camp boy-crazy and part of a whole new group of friends. When it's made clear that Callie is in the PGC (Popular Girls Club) and Katie is not invited to join, Katie suddenly feels incredibly alone. Katie realizes if she’s going to survive middle school she needs to seriously regroup and find some new friends. But how? She bites into the cupcake her mother packed her for lunch and for a second closes her eyes. The sweet treat makes her happy—finally something goes right! Looking around her table, Katie notices the other students seeming a bit lost, as well. Which gives her an idea…With three new friends Katie forms a club as a way to spread the cupcake love and earn some cupcake cash.
This debut installment of the Cupcakes Diaries covers familiar turf. On the first day of middle school, Katie's best friend Callie snubs her for the "Popular Girls Club." Hurt but resilient, Katie bonds with stylish Mia, who has just moved to town from Manhattan; shy Emma; and down-to-earth Alexis. When Katie's overprotective, "cupcake crazy" mother (who, yes, calls her "Cupcake") senses that her daughter has had a rough day she proposes a "cupcake cure" and the two bake a batch, which Katie shares with her new pals. Katie, an affable narrator, asserts that middle school "got a little bit easier" after she and her friends form the Cupcake Club and bake together on weekends. At a school fundraiser, Katie and crew sell cupcakes (competing with Callie and her cronies, who hawk disastrous makeovers), and win the prize. "It was like the sweet icing on top of a delicious cupcake," gushes Katie, whose reconciliation with Callie caps this breezy, predictable middle-grade story. Mia in the Mix pubs simultaneously. Ages 8 12.