Sunday, June 20, 2010

Two More Fun Books

I recently wrote about 2 fun series books for girls. Today, I'll be talking about two more fun books, both of which are a hoot.

Big Nate, In a Class All By Himself
, is very reminiscent of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. There are many laugh-out-loud moments when Nate does free association thinking. Lincoln Peirce, the author of this series, has created a very amusing character that I can't wait to get to know more. I love how much energy Nate puts into avoiding a class assignment. Nate is really quite bright; just not motivated to do schoolwork. The illustrations, the comic boxes, the dialogue that really is an aside to the reader, Nate's sidekicks -- all come together to provide the reader with much hilarity. I also enjoyed the sequence of the story as Nate goes through an entire school day, bouncing from one period and teacher to the next, always getting into a different kind of trouble, each problem worse than the one before. I was happy to see on the back of my Big Nate book that Book 2 is "just around the corner." Can't wait to see what Big Nate is up to next!

The other book is Justin Case: School, Drool, and Other Daily Disasters. From the front cover on, this book reminded me of the Alvin Ho series. Like Alvin, Justin Case has many insecurities that can overwhelm him at times. However, the author, Rachel Vail, makes Justin very likable. The story is done in journal format with Justin as the narrator. At times, the dialogue is abrupt and to the point; other times, Justin tends to elaborate more. I really enjoyed how "real" Justin was. He is going into 3rd grade, but he still loves to play imaginary games with his stuffed animals (though he doesn't want anyone to know he does that). Justin also hates PE class, except when there is running involved; he really hates the idea of having to climb the rope and touch the tape at the top of the rope. Justin doesn't see himself as well liked, but he is voted the class's student council representative. Though he is excited about that, he bums out when he realizes he has to give up some of his lunch/recess time for student council activities. The reader will also enjoy some of the "girl problems" Justin has as a 3rd grader.

I read an ARC of Justin Case: School, Drool, and Other Daily Disasters, but the other day when I was at Cover to Cover, I saw that this book is already on the bookshelves. Good to know, because Justin is a character readers will want to meet soon.

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