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Kinney, Jeff. 
New York : Amulet Books, 2007
IL 5-8, RL 5.0
ISBN 0810993139

(3 booktalks)

Click on the book to read Amazon reviews
Booktalks #1

Greg Haffley’s diary….oh wait. Boys don’t have diaries. Girls have diaries.  This is just a gathering of thoughts. Hilarious thoughts.  Greg is your average middle school kid. His little brother can do no wrong in his parent’s eyes.  His older brother does mean and annoying things to him, like the time he told him it was time to get up and get ready for school and it was actually the middle of the night.  Greg starts off middle school with his best friend Rowley. Neither of them is as popular as the kids who shave twice a day, and his journal (not a diary, a journal) regales us of their tales to survive.  Rowley starts to become more popular than Greg and Greg and worries about their friendship.  Besides the middle school life, the reader is lucky enough to be told stories from home as well. Greg’s form letter for thank you cards is one of the funniest entries: "Dear AUNT LORETTA, Thank you so much for the awesome PANTS! How did you now I wanted that for Christmas? I love the way the PANTS looks on my LEGS! All my friends will be so jealous that I have my very own PANTS."   (New Hampshire Great Stone Face nominee, 2008-2009)

Booktalk #2

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Greg Heffley’s Journal by Jeff Kinney is a hilariously funny account of Greg Heffley and his journey through middle school. The schemes he comes up with to be popular, or break out of his "station" at the middle school are hilarious. Whether it is trying out for the wrestling team, which he mistakenly believes is cool after looking at some new wrestling games, or running for student body treasurer, Greg’s misadventures bring a smile to your face. As do his attempts to work around actual work that he should be doing, or trouble he shouldn’t. Add in an older brother, Roderick, who is the typical terror to Greg, and the little brother, Manny, embarrassment is bound to follow Greg wherever he goes. Greg’s other misadventures include his best friend Rowley, who isn’t quite up to Greg’s scheming, and often ends up injured or in trouble because of it. In fact, that’s how Rowley learns an important lesson about friendship. I wish I could say the same for Greg, but somehow, I think he misses the whole picture. This book is delightfully worth reading, as Greg goes through his first year of middle school and kinda, sorta learns some lessons. This is the first book in a series that now has three novels and a do it yourself series as well.
Reviewed by Tobye Ertelt for Colorado Blue Spruce Young Adult Book Award, 2010

Booktalk #3

“First of all, let me get something straight: This is a JOURNAL, not a diary. I know what it says on the cover, but when mom went out to buy this thing I SPECIFICALLY told her to get one that didn’t say “diary” on it. Great. All I need is for some jerk to catch me carrying this book around and get the wrong idea.”

14 year old Greg Heffley just wants to survive middle school. He wants to go from being small and weak to strong and good looking, he wants to become more popular, get hot chicks to like him, and he wants to avoid the Cheese Touch. However, things don’t always go as planned. Add a mean older brother, a spoiled little brother, and a strange best friend to the mix, and you have one crazy school year! With his best friend Rowley by his side, the two boys try to make the best of their first year in middle school. Read all about their adventures in Greg’s journal… Just don’t expect him to be all “”Dear Diary” this and “Dear Diary” that.”  (Erin Shanahan,, college student)

SUBJECTS: Middle schools -- Fiction.
                    Friendship -- Fiction.
                    Schools -- Fiction.
                    Diaries -- Fiction.
                    Humorous stories.
                    Diary fiction.

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