Monday, January 26, 2009

Knucklehead : tall tales & mostly true stories about growing up Scieszka

Jon Scieszka's memoir was the most hysterical thing I have read in a while. The only problem I have with it is this: Why has this man not done a fiction series of books for middle school boys just like this? Yes, the picture books are fun, the Time Warp Trio is good, but all of these are a little young for middle school. We want OUR turn, O God of Boys' Literature. I'm sure you could mine your adolescent years for some funny stories about life, love and acne.
Picked this one up at lunch and flipped through it, and had to quote some choice parts. Couldn't wait to get home to read it. The cover is great, and will certainly attract boys. The prose is simple, wonderfully engaging, and the humor quick and off-the-cuff. In a family with six boys, there was obviously a need for a good sense of humor.
There's not really any plot, just a bunch of really amusing anecdotes. I was forced to read the chapter about the cat throwing up the nut roll all over the car to my family because I was laughing so hard about it. This one will be the best circulating autobiography in my library.

Two depressing books: Blundell's What I Saw and How I Lied sounded interesting-- girl goes to Florida with mother and stepfather after World War II and gets involved in some intrigue. However, the intrigue involved the girl's interest in an older man and her mother's possible affair with the same man. I might have liked it more if it had more of a retro feel, but it didn't. Maybe for high school.
Kathe Koja's Headlong was another dysfunctional private school book. Social outcast scholarship student Hazel becomes friends with legacy Lily and they become fast friends despite all the meanness surrounding them. A lot of gratitous language in this one. Again, more of a high school story.

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