Friday, November 16, 2018

The Stinky Truth (Lyttle Lies #2)

Berger, Joe. The Stinky Truth (Lyttle Lies #2)
November 6th 2018 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

After his escapades in The Pudding Problem, you would have thought that Sam would have learned his lesson. No such luck. This time, he volunteers his mother to run a Zumba-thon at the town festival, and she's less than pleased to find out where his lies have taken him. She tells him that if he wants to see the much anticipated Cry Wolfe, the first Wolfe Stone movie, he will have to go six weeks without telling any lies. He tries very hard to do this, and gets in various scrapes during the process, but it is looking like he might be able to make it, even though he's had to practice telling his grandfather that his home pickling projects are horrible... but in a polite way. As the festival approaches, Sam gets himself into a pickle of his own with a tray of pastries for the event. Can he manage to extricate himself but still tell the truth so that he can see the movie?
Strengths: Like Big Nate, Same means well but frequently gets carried away by his own misguided enthusiasm. This is the definition of middle school behavior! I really like the illustrations, and the fact that there are some comic strips inserted into the story, along with page illustrations. Students enjoy stories about summer vacation, and the UK setting is a bit exotic. The family is supportive (mom throws herself into her Zumba assignment and dad plays guitar for the festival) and present, and Sam has good friends as well. This would be a great choice for first grade on up.
Weaknesses: A bit on the preachy side, but it doesn't get too overwhelming.
What I really think: Definitely purchasing. Sam is a much more sympathetic character than Greg Heffley, the drawings and page design are much nicer than many notebook novels, and there is the adorable Pudding the cat.

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