Hi guys! So recently I’ve been reading The Rachel Riley Diaries by Joanna Nadin. I had a copy of the first book from years & years ago (maybe picked up at a book fair?) but had never expanded too the full collection.
These books were one of the first on my list to complete, and luckily they’re reaaally cheap on eBay.
I managed to pick up all of the books for £9.99 second hand, which is pretty dang gooood. And if anybody desperately wants to try these books out, I do have a second copy of the first book (although the illustration format is like the second column of books and not the first, which bothered me but you may not be quite as odd as I am).
These books illustrate Rachel Rileys #~tragic~# life (aka total normal and therefore boooring). At the beginning of the first book she is 14, and books 1 & 2 are a year each, though as it follows on, book 3 & 4 covers one year and likewise with 5 & 6. Book 7 is the final instalment, and covers about 3/4 of a year. This means that you watch Rachel grow from an awkward 13 year old to practically an adult, at 18.
I originally struggled to read the first book, the narrative is almost actually in the place of a 13 year old, and I found some of the words used immature and slightly uncomfortable. However as the books developed, Rachel did too and I found it a much easier read. Her sense of humour is very british, and some of her remarks I could imagine coming out of my mouth at that age and they had me in stitches.
The books are in diary format (as you know, a clear favourite for me) and really – it is just like a diary. Each day is not a huge saga where tons of stuff happens, and sometimes I did find I’d read a whole month of her diary where it was just her rambling on and there wasn’t much progression. However, that is more like real life.
One of my favourite things about the book, and it was something that I have not seen often, is that it followed real life events. So, the original book was published and set in the mid 2000’s and a lot of current events are shown in this book. Who won Big Brother that year, how the politics were going etc etc. And you almost felt like you were going back in time, remembering things that actually happened. It almost made the character feel more real.
This is one of those tweeny books, which actually I would not recommend to anybody under say 13 years old? It covers a bit more mature content, with some of the girls having done ‘it‘ as young as 13 (which, although not nice to think about, is a common occurrence nowadays) and many regular references to penis’ and sex.
All in all, I enjoyed this book. I was in a bit of a reading slump while reading midway through, and feel like I skim-read some of the 5th and 6th books. However, by the time I was reading the finale, I wished I had slowed down and savoured the moment a bit more.
As always, thanks for reading.