The Girl (age 9) loves Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, has all the books, and even waited in line for about 2 hours at the National Book Festival to meet him and have her books signed. So when the fourth book in the series, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days, was released in October, she bought a copy right away. In fact, she saved a gift card she received for her birthday back in July solely for this purpose.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days was my introduction to the series, and I probably wouldn’t have read it had The Girl not fallen ill and wanted me to read to her. But I was sucked in from the first page, and in less than an hour, we’d blown through 90 pages of the 217-page book. It helps that it’s written like a diary with cartoon drawings, but it’s also very funny.
Here’s the gist: Nothing seems to go Greg Heffley’s way. The summer arrives, and he plans to spend it in his room playing video games with the curtains drawn. But his mother (thankfully) has other plans.
The Girl asked me if we could do this review a little differently, sort of like an interview. So here goes:
The Girl: What was your favorite part of the story?
Me: When Greg has to pay his friend Rowley’s father back, and he decides to start a lawn care business. The advertisements in which he superimposes his and Rowley’s faces on the bodies of burly construction workers were hilarious.
The Girl: Who was your favorite character?
Me: I thought Greg was pretty funny, but he doesn’t always make the right choices, as we discussed. Since the story is written from Greg’s point of view, and he tends to focus mainly on himself, you don’t get to know the other characters really well.
The Girl: What do you think this book teaches kids?
Me: Well, I hope they’d see that the choices Greg makes typically are bad ones. While the events that occur are supposed to be funny, and they are, you really wouldn’t want kids trying to act like Greg Heffley. But it’s fiction. I mean, how many kids Greg’s age really think their parents would try to sell them and then call the police on them? It’s purely entertainment.
What was your favorite part of the book?
The Girl: When Greg and Rowley were under the boardwalk and sticking a dollar bill through the wooden planks and pulling it back before people could grab it.
Me: Is this your favorite book in the series?
The Girl: Yes. I thought it was the funniest.
Me: Do you think Greg is a good role model?
The Girl: No. He disobeys his parents and causes trouble. He called the police on his father for no reason.
Me: Why do you think the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books are so popular?
The Girl: The stories and the cartoon illustrations are funny. Jeff Kinney has a way of telling a story that grabs your attention and is easy to understand.
Me: Last question. Do you identify in any with Greg Heffley?
The Girl: No. I never disobey my parents.
Me: HA! HA! HA! You certainly have a sense of humor.
Well, there you have it. In a nutshell, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days is a fun book for middle grade readers, and even grownups will get a laugh out of it. In fact, I’ve borrowed the other three books from The Girl, and I hope to read them when I’m in the mood for some light reading.
Have any of you shared these books with your children? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.
Disclosure: We purchased our copy of Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days. I am an Amazon associate.
© 2009 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.