Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
I recommend this book for: grades 3-6
One of the true tests of popularity for books is when the holds list reaches 20 or more (due to at least one kid asking for it daily). This book has it, at least in my system.
Greg Heffley is keeping a journal - NOT a diary, even though that's what it says on the cover - and not because he wants to, but because his mom thought it would be a good idea. In it he chronicles his (largely unsuccessful) quest for popularity and his adventures with his best friend Rowley, which include getting chased by high school kids on Halloween and hosed down by Greg's father, performing as a singing tree in the school musical, and trying to avoid a really old and smelly piece of cheese on the basketball court.
I can see why kids like this book - it has really funny moments, and Greg is fairly clueless, which makes him an interesting character. He's also ridiculously self-centered (which you could argue is an adolescent trait, but I'd like to think that most kids have a conscience, which Greg doesn't seem to develop until the last few pages), and some of his antics are more mean-natured than oblivious. I really couldn't like him as a character, which kept me from being a huge fan of the book - but the kids are dying to read it, particularly some of the reluctant boys, which I am a huge fan of, so yay Jeff Kinney!
Reviews that are less conflicted.