Saturday, October 16, 2010

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Diary of a Wimpy Kid, #1)Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

I am taking critical evaluation of children's literature this semester and this is one of the books that I had to read.  My daughter read this book when it first came out and just loved it.  I glanced at it when she read it and noticed all the pictures and was just glad that she had finally found something that she liked.  It's very, very popular, so I figured there must be something good about it.

I don't get it.  Why is this book popular?  I think that kids must like the novelty of the pictures in the book.  The story holds a lot of promise.  The main character is an average kid in middle school. Not the geekiest, but he is certainly not a popular jock.  The book tells about his typical life and how  he tries to get noticed by girls and become more popular at school.

This is a familiar story to everyone, right?  The problem is that I didn't really like the main character at all.  He's not a nice guy.  He makes fun of his best friend, let's him become the fall guy every time they get in trouble and is, for all practical purposes, a big jerk.  It's no wonder that no one likes him.

The voice of the book is good.  The author has a sort of tongue-in-cheek voice that works well for upper elementary school kids.  I just wish that the main character was a better person.  I don't like thinking that my daughter was enthralled with a book where the main character gets in trouble, discovers that he's been mistaken for his best friend, let's the best friend get in trouble for what happened and then tells his mom that he did the right thing and gets taken out for ice cream.  Really?  Is that the best you can do, Jeff Kinney?

My grade?  C at best, and that's being generous.

**EDIT**  I've changed my mind.  This book is most defintely a D-!!  After reading 2 other children's novels and started a 3rd, this novel is trash by comparison.  There are so many other good books out there for children to read, there's no point in wasting time on this garbage.

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