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Sunday, January 27, 2008

cover of Diary of a Wimpy Kid

G was very excited to read about this book in his University of Maryland alumni magazine because Kinney was a cartoonist for the campus newspaper when G was there, so we picked up a copy right away. It's a fairly entertaining book-- the story of a kid in middle school, trying to be cool and fit in. The book is printed as if hand printed by the narrator, Greg Heffley, and interspersed with little cartoony drawings to illustrate his point. Some of these are particularly amusing, for instance the one that illustrates his discover that it's preferable to anger his dad when he's holding a newspaper instead of a brick, since he tends to throw whatever he is holding. The book is supposed to be a novel in cartoons, but it didn't seem like there was much of a big story arc to me; it's just the story of a school year with the various events and the messes that Greg gets himself into-- trying to create a haunted house to make money, coming up with ideas for a comic strip for the school paper, breaking up with his best friend and eventually re-establishing the friendship, the travails of the disgusting "cheese touch" on the playground that will give you cooties if you touch it, and other silly middle-school stuff like that.

The artwork is fun and enjoyable (not great art, but something you could believe a middle school kid might be able to draw), and the tone of the writing is often humorous. I wasn't as engaged, I guess because there was no real story but just a lot of separate events, but it did make me laugh at several points.

Title:Diary of a Wimpy Kid
Author:Jeff Kinney
Date published:2007
Genre:Young Adult
Number of pages:224


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