Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Dawn: Diary 1 (California Diaries, #1)” as Want to Read:
Blank 133x176
Dawn: Diary 1
Ann M. Martin
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Dawn: Diary 1 (California Diaries #1)

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  606 Ratings  ·  41 Reviews
Having moved away from California, Dawn Shafer experiences a number of unsettling changes at once, including new relationships with friends, family, and her stepfamily, and she finds herself redefining her identity. Original."
176 pages
Published April 16th 1999 by Hippo (first published August 1997)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Dawn, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Dawn

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Initial reaction: "Dawn: Dairy One" was a nice start to the California Diaries series, as it showcases Dawn having moved back to California to live with her father and stepmother. She reunites with her old friends, but realizes - through a bunch of changes that happen both in her life and personal preferences, that nothing ever stays the same and you just have to roll with the changes.

Very nice read for pre-teens/young teens.

Full review:

Ann M. Martin's "California Diaries" series is a spin-off o
Mar 02, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
From the original BSC series (which I love!), Dawn was my favorite member (even though she moved away). She was funny, sweet, smart, and just someone I wanted to be friends with. So when I heard about the spin-0ff series taking place in my home state, I knew I had to read it. I was excited! I was thrilled! Then...I read it and I don't know how to feel.

Look, I know the BSC books are pretty squeaky clean but at least they felt real. The people, the dialogue, the problems. I felt a connection to th
Natalie Godinez
Feb 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dawn: Diary 1 by Ann M. Martin is a book about a girl named Dawn with 3 best friends that because their middle school was small they went to high school. Dawn and her friends Sunny and Maggie go to a party while they are supposed to be with her other friend in a sleepover and they find a friend from school Amalia but the party was a trick from the upper graders. I like this book because it gets intense in some parts and it is so realistic and funny. I recommend this book to Gisell because she wi ...more
Alix Wade
I loved this book as a pre-teen and found myself wanting to read to the end of the series as an adult.
I'm not disappointed! Although the character of Dawn is a little naive, her personality and longing of wanting things to never change is relatable to many!
Ann M Martin is the author who inspired me to read so much as a child reading the babysitters club books and that alone brings me back to her books on a regular basis.
Logan Hughes
Apr 08, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: babysitters-club
This isn't your big sister's goody-goody baby-sitters club. This is REAL. This is RAW. This is CALIFORNIA.

I was so confused when I learned, at age 24 or so, that California Diaries existed--confused and delighted. You mean there is a BSC spinoff series where they are in high school? And they're dealing with SERIOUS TEEN ISSUES? And there is a boy recurring narrator? And he's not not gay? It's exactly what I always wanted (except it's about Dawn)!

It is almost everything I ever hoped it would be.
I loved these books when they originally came out, and I still do. They were just so good, and so much better than the original BSC series. I think because they dealt with more "adult" type scenarios, and things that realistically a lot of us did as stupid teens. I appreciated that this book just really got into the grittier stuff, and I liked those subtle digs about not missing Mary Anne and her friends in Connecticut haha. For once, Dawn was tolerable!
Jul 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you were a young reader in the 80's and early 90's, you could NOT have missed the sensation of The Baby Sitter's Club. I devoured the series as a child, even going so far as to try and create my own real life club or preteen baby sitters, which ultimately ended in nothing but disaster. But even these crazy experiences were not enough to detract from the magic and fun of this series.

Somehow, I missed this spin-off series, which starts with DAWN: DIARY ONE of the California Diaries. All avid BS
Apr 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My copy was provided by Netgalley.

Dawn is at the top of the world as she's been reunited with her old friends after moving back to California and she's finally an eighth grader. She's finally growing up and learning to make her own decisions. But when her school's too crowded and the eighth graders are moved to the high school, everything Dawn has ever known is changed.

Now she doesn't know how to act without others ridiculing her. She has to deal with mean girls and she has to learn who her rea
Kiana Cook
California Diaries was a pretty groundbreaking series for me when I first found it as a kid. It was like the "older" version of the Babysitters Club, one that involved drinking, partying, and bad behavior in general. I remember thinking I was reading some really mature stuff as a kid; upon looking at the book again, it's not nearly as sophisticated (although I'm sure it's pretty cutting-edge for tweens). I do remember Dawn being one of the weakest narrators in the series, though. While Sunny, Am ...more
Nov 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Martin’s Dawn had me excited most of the time because I was always looking forward into her daily struggles with her family, friends and school. The book is really good, I can’t think of another diary that can compare to this. It always had me excited for each daily entry from the beginning all the way to the end.

The theme of the story is sometimes friends in high school won't always be there for you and if they are dont always depend on them to always be there because at the end you're the only
I was a huge fan of The Babysitters Club when I was a kid, and even when I should have grown out of the series, I kept tabs on what was happening in the series and it's subsequent, Friends Forever series. I have good memories of reading these books, and I'm excited that the series have been revamped for the next generation of girls.

California Diaries somehow sneaked up under my radar. I had been vaguely aware of the first book, but it wasn't until a few years ago that I realized that they had ac
Michelle Kidwell
Dawn is in the eight grade, but the middle school building is so overcrowded that by October, the eight graders are forced to move into the high school building where they are no longer the rulers, but instead they are faced with new challenges, and decisions that could change their life, they are faced with peer pressure unlike anything they have ever faced before, and some of them end up making poor decisions.

Dawn's diary is full of adolescent angst as well as the trials that they face, most u
Dawn is a bit naive which is to be expected from a thirteen year-old but there are times when I think it's a bit forced by the author. She's kind of stuck at times, unsure of what to do when her friends begin to fight but she tries to be the peacekeeper of the group while trying to deal with the issue of her stepmother. Maybe it's because I don't have a stepmother or anything but I find her whole ordeal with Carol to be a bit weird. Dawn is able to accept the remarriage of her parents to differe ...more
Krystl Louwagie
I was just going to get rid of this book when I found out that I had already gotten rid of all the other ones in the series (without ever reading them, that's weird of me...). Anyways, this was a #1 in the series, and it was so short, I thought I'd give it a shot before I put it on paperbackswap. It read extremely quick and easy, and was a little...goody/cheesy (it made sense after I found out that it was written by the same woman as the Babysitters Club books-they are marketed very differently, ...more
May 08, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone!
Shelves: 5-star-books
When I first started this book I thought it was stupid. But then I got to the part were they went to the party and I got interested!

In this book Dawn talks about her life with her friends. One day her and three of her friends sneak out and go to this party they get invited to. Sunny get drunk.

Okay I read this book almost a year ago but I have an update to make. It kind of bothers me that so many kids drink and get drunk and that they want to because it makes them "feel good" (U
Nga Reh
Jan 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
the dawn is a good book because it tell about life can be hard but you can't help it. for example, have you ever run a way from u family or mad at you family, and you want to take it back but you already did.
when something happen is happen. you can't go back but your will understand.
life can only be understood backward but you live forward. that why its interesting with this book. after you read this book it will get in through you mind. this is all about regret. you can run and you can hide bu
Apr 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a quick read and was very enjoyable - I finished it within an hour or so. I love the connection back to The Babysitter's Club (showing how Dawn got back to CA) and the pace of the book. The characters were great (especially Ducky - I always wanted a Ducky of my very own!) and the action of the party and the adventure and consequences surrounding it definitely kept me involved. I will be reading the others, for sure.
Kris - My Novelesque Life

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review).

"Having moved away from California, Dawn Shafer experiences a number of unsettling changes at once, including new relationships with friends, family, and her stepfamily, and she finds herself redefining her identity." (From Amazon)

California Diaries is a spin-off of The Baby-Sitters Club but lacks the friendship and fun of the original series.
I barely remember this book, but what I remember about it is that it inspired my journaling habit that I still keep up today. Reading these characters' diaries made me want to start my own journal in middle school, and I've been writing ever since. Any personal development as a writer, of journals or otherwise, can be traced back to reading this series. I can't remember much about the books themselves, they might be good or they might not be... but I'm glad I read them!
Aug 26, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Now for the parallel universe where Maggie is an overachieving preppie anorexic chick and Dawn is a sociopath. Well, okay, not really, and I know they were trying to create distance from the BSC - this being the 'edgy' version. But still, hearing her say she doesn't miss Mary Anne as much as she thought she would? I was sure I could hear Mary Anne crying all the way from Connecticut! Saying that - it's kind of like kicking a puppy. Then the thing with her friend Jill?

I never liked Dawn.
I absolutely loved the California Diaries series when I was 12-13 years old. I started reading the series when I grew out of reading Ann M. Martin's popular series 'The Baby-sitters Club'.

I felt like I could really relate to the journal and It was quite exciting reading someone's 'private' journal. It felt as if though you were invited into someone's mind. It was nice to read something from someone else's point of view.
Aug 18, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya
I loved this book! I was a huge fan of Ann M. Martin's bok series, and heard there was a spinoff of Dawn and her friends in California diary series, but I didn't realize how great (and mauture) the diary series was! I'm so glad I'm doing a challenge where you have to read a book with a character's whose name is the same as yours, otherwise I never would of read this book.....can't wait to read the others:)
Angie  Moore
Only read a few chapters but it was just like I remember the Babysitter's Club series being 25 years ago ;) definitely can tell Dawn is in 8th grade with the friend, school & family drama. My middle school (or at lest 5/6) girls will probably love was nostalgic but that's about it. Definitely not my thing any more :)
May 15, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bsc
Actually not that bad, I'm kind of curious to read more now. Dawn always was my favourite, and this is all about her while she's back in California and how she and her friends are all changing as they grow up. I was really sympathetic to Jill at the start when she was still the kid all left behind, but wow she sure showed a bratty mean streak at the end!
Samantha Glasser
I read these books in 5th grade and absolutely loved them. Dawn has a lot of trouble in this one transitioning from childhood to her teenage years. She feels like everyone around her is growing up and away from her. I really related to that going from 5th to 6th grade. The diary format is really great, and each of these diaries are in a handwriting-style font, which adds to the authenticity.
Maria Robinson
Apr 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dawn's diaries were a bit lighter in tone than the other diaries in the tragically too shortlived California Diaries series, due to the fact that she was also featured in the BSC books during that time, but I thought that this was really realistic, with the ending of her friendship with Jill and the news of her stepmother Carol's pregnancy.
Lydia Rose
It was pretty good, but was pretty close to every other teen book out there. Teens trying to fit in, going to a big kid party, getting caught, getting grounded, all that stuff. I will probably read the rest, unless they're worse than this one.
Apr 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this! I don't know how I missed that Dawn and her California friends have diaries. I read it while unexpectedly waiting for my grandpa in the hospital - some kind volunteers left it for the people to read. It held my attention and I'm ready to read the others!
Julie K.
Jan 03, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book helps to discover yourself. The book is about a girl named Dawn and she is telling you a year of her life. This book teaches you a lesson on what you should do and not do. Dawns life is very hectic and crazy. I think teenagers would like this book.
Apr 08, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is not an adult book. I use to love the baby sitters club and the little sister. I was young so elementary school kids and middle grade kids would love this story. Its a very sweet and cute book for kids. Not for adults though. If I was a kid I would give it 5 stars.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • If You Only Knew (Friendship Ring, #1)
  • Hide and Seek
  • Jessica's Secret (Sweet Valley Twins, #42)
  • The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde (Wishbone Classics, #8)
  • Escape from Egypt
  • Inside the Walls of Troy: A Novel of the Women Who Lived the Trojan War
  • The Saga of Erik the Viking
  • Thames Doesn't Rhyme with James
  • Lisa's War (Lisa's War, #1)
  • The Mutt in the Iron Muzzle (Adventures of Wishbone, #7)
  • Be a Wolf! (Adventures of Wishbone, #1)
  • The Demon Headmaster Strikes Again (Demon Headmaster, #4)
  • One Last Wish (One Last Wish, #3, 5-6)
  • Pearl Harbor, 1941
  • Heard It in the Playground
  • Three Lives to Live
  • The Anne Frank Case: Simon Wiesenthal's Search for the Truth
  • Among Friends
Ann Matthews Martin was born on August 12, 1955. She grew up in Princeton, New Jersey, with her parents and her younger sister, Jane. After graduating from Smith College, Ann became a teacher and then an editor of children's books. She's now a full-time writer.

Ann gets the ideas for her books from many different places. Some are based on personal experiences, while others are based on childhood me
More about Ann M. Martin...

Other Books in the Series

California Diaries (1 - 10 of 16 books)
  • Sunny: Diary 1 (California Diaries, #2)
  • Maggie: Diary 1 (California Diaries, #3)
  • Amalia: Diary 1 (California Diaries, #4)
  • Ducky: Diary 1 (California Diaries, #5)
  • Sunny: Diary 2 (California Diaries, #6)
  • Dawn: Diary 2 (California Diaries, #7)
  • Maggie: Diary #2 (California Diaries, #8)
  • Amalia: Diary 2 (California Diaries, #9)
  • Ducky: Diary 2 (California Diaries, #10)
  • Dawn: Diary 3 (California Diaries, #11)

Young Adult Deals

  • The Silent Shield (Kingfountain #5)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Orphan Train Girl
    $9.99 $1.99
  • The Immortal Circus (Cirque des Immortels, #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Alone
    $17.99 $2.99
  • Gateway to Fourline (The Fourline Trilogy, #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • The Scourge of Muirwood (Legends of Muirwood, #3)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Period 8
    $6.74 $0.99
  • The Blight of Muirwood (Legends of Muirwood, #2)
    $3.99 $2
  • The Forsaken Throne (Kingfountain #6)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • How Dare the Sun Rise: Memoirs of a War Child
    $8.99 $1.99
  • Caraval (Caraval, #1)
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Rebel Genius
    $6.38 $2.99
  • Dreamology
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Secret Hour (Midnighters, #1)
    $2.99 $0.99
  • Blur  (Blur Trilogy #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Insignia (Insignia, #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Blood Rose Rebellion
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Unrivaled (Beautiful Idols #1)
    $2.99 $0.99
  • The Space Between Heartbeats (Betwixt #1)
    $3.99 $0.99
  • The Glass Magician (The Paper Magician Trilogy, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Flamecaster (Shattered Realms, #1)
    $4.09 $1.99
  • The Wretched of Muirwood (Legends of Muirwood, #1)
    $3.99 $2.00
  • The Most Dangerous Place on Earth
    $13.99 $1.99
  • The Reluctant Queen (The Queens of Renthia #2)
    $9.99 $2.99
  • When You Reach Me
    $7.99 $1.99
  • The Thief's Daughter (Kingfountain, #2)
    $3.99 $2
  • The Queen's Poisoner (Kingfountain, #1)
    $3.99 $2.00
  • If I Was Your Girl
    $9.99 $2.99