Be Prepared by Vera Brosgol

Be Prepared

A gripping and hilarious middle-grade summer camp memoir from the author of Anya's Ghost.All Vera wants to do is fit in—but that’s not easy for a Russian girl in the suburbs. Her friends live in fancy houses and their parents can afford to send them to the best summer camps. Vera’s single mother can’t afford that sort of luxury, but there's one summer camp in her price range—Russian summer camp.Vera is sure she's found the one place she...

Details Be Prepared

TitleBe Prepared
Release DateMay 29th, 2018
PublisherFirst Second
GenreSequential Art, Graphic Novels, Childrens, Middle Grade, Comics, Autobiography, Memoir, Realistic Fiction

Reviews Be Prepared

  • Lola Reviewer
    Some stories… don't need to be told.First of all, although this is marketed as a graphic ‘‘memoir,’’ the author admits in her note that a lot of the some stuff in this book is made up, so… not true. Why would you even write a memoir if you’re not going to be completely honest or fully aware of the memories you’re featuring? The author says she simply couldn’t remember all that well her experience at camp when she was young. In t...
  • Nat
    Summer Camp, Russian Culture, and BelongingHaving adored Anya’s Ghost by Vera Brosgol, I was keen on checking out her spin with this gripping and hilarious middle-grade summer camp memoir.All Vera wants to do is fit in—but that’s not easy for a Russian girl in the suburbs. Her friends live in fancy houses and their parents can afford to send them to the best summer camps. Vera’s single mother can’t afford that sort of luxury, but the...
  • emma
    IF VERA BROSGOL DOESN'T HAVE THE CUTESTBEST ART STYLE IN THE WORLD, I SURE DO NOT KNOW WHO DOES.that's pretty much the standout part of this book in either direction. it's a classic indoors-kid-goes-to-camp-and-hates-it-and-everything-is-terrible-but-then-she-likes-it-because-she-makes-a-friend-just-in-time-to-leave story. which, like, not my favorite trope? presumably no one's favorite trope? just a lot of gross toilets and bugs and outdoor shen...
  • David Schaafsma
    Vera Brosgol created Anya's Ghost, which I liked very much, so I looked forward to this tale, since summer camp was important to my early life, and is important to some present members of this house now, including one girl. I expect they may really like this story, which is very much based on Brosgol's largely miserable experiences at camp while growing up. She also explains in an afterword that in the process of creating this graphic novel that ...
  • Julie Ehlers
    Be Prepared is the second graphic novel I've read by Brosgol (the first was Anya's Ghost), and I liked this one much better. Based on the author's own experiences, this is an absorbing story of a girl who has trouble fitting in and wants nothing more than to go to summer camp, but when she does go it doesn't turn out anything like she was hoping. I thought this might be humorous or even scary, but instead it's mostly sad—although there's defini...
  • Jay G
    Want to see more from me? Check out my Youtube channel: you to the publisher for sending me a copy of this in exchange for my honest review! Everyone Vera knows gets to go away to summer camp every year. All Vera wants is to be like the other kids in her neighbourhood. Then, one summer, her mother agrees to send her to ORRA, a Russian summer camp for children just like her! Upon arriving, Vera quickly...
  • Rod Brown
    With strong art and solid writing, this is a well-done addition to the coming-of-age summer camp subgenre. The Russian Orthodox background of the characters gives the book a unique flavor. I'd like to see a follow-up to the little cliffhanger at the end.
  • Julie Kirchner
    I love graphic novels and how this format appeals to a wide range of students. This book will definitely be popular with students, but I did have some concerns about whether I feel comfortable promoting it with my elementary students. Vera Brosgol wrote this as a semi-autobiographical story about her trips to Russian summer camp. The moments prior to camp at the friend sleepover and hosting her own sleepover birthday party were heart breakingly r...
  • Laura
    When I was a child, I lived in a well-to-do neighborhood, and had well-to-do neighbors, and classmates. This was in the days when rich people still sent their kids to public schools. They were the kids, that in high school had their own cards, and went on ski trips, and to Summer camp every year.While, I, like Vera in this story, had to make to with what we had, and couldn’t afford to do any of the things that my friends were doing. Certainly n...
  • Lindsay
    There is a special circle of Hell in childhood designated to summer camp, at least for some of us, and this newest from Brosgol captures it perfectly. While I don't share the same experiences of being Russian in America, I certainly sympathized with the essence of her childhood--when you're already an outcast, you dream that you can get away from your present problems, but they generally always followed you no matter how far away you put yourself...
  • Alyssa
    I was sent this book for review from Macmillan-First Second Reads. All thoughts and opinions are honest. I've read Anya's Ghost and I really enjoyed it. So, I knew very well that I wouldn't have a problem reading this. Vera is eight & nine-years old in this graphic memoir and dreams of going to sleep-away camp like her friends are. Yet, her mother is going to school for accounting and is a single parent. They're dealing with poverty and Vera is b...
  • Misti
    Nine-year-old Vera is excited about attending Russian camp. She’s always felt a little out of place among her friends, and hopes that a few weeks around other people of Russian heritage will help. Plus, she’s heard some great camp stories: bonfires and s’mores, hiking, ghost stories, swimming in the lake... Unfortunately, nobody told her about the bugs, and let’s not even talk about the latrines! Plus, she ends up in a tent with two mean ...
  • Gabby
    I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher, via my work, in order to give an honest review. Be Prepared reminds me of being the kid who couldn't go to camp because they were too poor to do so, in the best possible way though. Add to that she makes it so easy to relate to her despite the fact that she was Russian, and I am not in any shape, fashion, or from. This is a great addition to the graphic novels that can be recommended to...
  • Mrs. Debraski
    I was really looking forward to reading this and it did not disappoint. There was a lot of humor here, but it really was pretty sad (to me). Poor Vera was at a camp she hated, she had trouble fitting in, longed for a friendship and nothing seemed to go right. I was fascinated by the aspects of it being a Russian camp. A great book for fans of Real Friends, Smile, Sunny Side Up.(Don't forget to read the author's note at the end!)
  • Edward Sullivan
    A sweet, poignant, funny middle-grade summer camp graphic memoir .
  • Sneha
    Utterly charming and relatable!
  • Emily
    Unfortunately, the part where they chanted "tit head" at someone is going to make it far-less marketable in the community where I work.
  • Jessica Bader
    I love graphic novels; I bought this one for my girls to read, since I am sending to what I hope is a wonderful camp this summer.
  • Aliza Werner
    Love this autobiographical graphic novel of young Vera going to Russian camp. I was excited to have my 3rd graders grab it, but there a few parts that take this one up to a true middle grade read (name calling: "tit head", older campers caught making out, period-stained undies flying from the flagpole). Many kids will relate to the challenges of friendships and navigating new situations.
  • Lily Williams
    A truly wonderful tale about summer camp and struggling to fit in. Plus there is a surprise guinea pig!!Vera Brosgol is an absolute master! The illustrations are not only incredibly beautiful but they tell the story so exceptionally well. What a book!
  • Melissa
    Yep. I was that dork who didn’t know how to make friends at camp too.
  • Emma (Miss Print)
    Vera has been trying hard to fit in with her friends in the suburbs. After carefully studying all of the ingredients, Vera knows exactly what she needs to have the perfect birthday party. Except the end result doesn't turn out quite right. The Russian pizza place doesn't stuff their crust with cheese. The Russian bakery doesn't have ice cream cake. And Vera's single mother can't afford a big house like the other girls so the sleepover is more cra...
  • Hannah L (Reviewer)
    A middle grade graphic novel, Be Prepared is a cute story of a young Russian girl named Vera, attending a Russian orthodox summer camp and all the high-jinx that ensue. She runs into many empathize-able camp experiences, like rude older campers, like bad weather ruining the day and like the horrors of the camp toilets. I found myself often chuckling and outright laughing while reading Be Prepared. Vera is a sweet little girl. Her rough pre-pubese...
  • Justmybookishlife
    Macmillan sent me this comic book for an honest review and I just want to say thank you.This is only my second comic book ever so take that to heart with this review.I love how quick and easy comic books are to read, I hardly ever read a book in one sitting/day.I’ve never been camping or to a summer camp and always wanted to.This is such a cute story, growing up Russian and not fitting in makes a lot of sense to me, I grew up very Irish.My fath...
  • Eva
    The illustrations were by far my favourite part of this book. By turns funny, sweet, and poignant, they really brought a depth to what might have otherwise been a fairly typical outsider story.It was definitely intriguing to see a second generation Russian immigrant story, as that's not a sub-genre you see much of, and even though this was very 'slice of life' instead of what one might think of as a fully fleshed out story, the author's afterword...
  • Billie
    Although aimed at the middle grade reader, if you're an adult who ever went to summer camp and found yourself not among the popular, sneaking-out-to-make-out crowd, you'll find yourself wincing in sympathy with Vera's every misadventure. Both delightful and cringe-inducing. Brosgol's newest graphic novel is sure to appeal to fans of Raina Telgemeier and Victoria Jamieson.
  • Mark Siegel
    Vera Brosgol makes it looks easy. What she does here is deceptively accessible and disarming. But few can keep so emotionally true, and blend humor, beauty, and pathos like Brosgol. This one belongs in the canon of middle grade memoirs, but is one for all ages, and for the ages.Also be sure to pick up her Caldecott Honor picture book LEAVE ME ALONE—another stellar work.
  • Mitchell
    I guess that's what a universal experience is all about. I never went to a camp like this one. But this definitely captured memories and struggles of childhood I'd sooner not remember. All in a very readable very truthful way. It might not be the right thing to share with someone about to go to camp for the first time though.
  • Erin Scott
    Relatable camp adventure for young girls who find it difficult to relate to others. Brosgol's artwork is a fun stylization and her use of the limited green palette is even more charming than a full array of colors would allow.
  • Katie Florida
    A great camp story with all of the struggles one would expect. Beautiful art and storytelling drive this tale of feeling left out and trying to fit in. *contains some bullying about menstruation that may bring up questions for younger readers*