A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Nate and his friends work together as a team in the Trivia Slam. Readers will learn what "ailurophobia" means and may be inspired to practice for a trivia match.
Friendship takes work, and Nate and his classmates make a great effort to patch up their differences and help each other. He and his friends work together as a team: to solve a theft, improve the yearbook, and compete in the Trivia Slam. Despite all the teasing and social anxieties of middle school, Nate stands up for his friends.
Positive Role Models
Nate gets in a lot of mischief, but he's a good kid. He means to do well, and he's a good friend. For all the teasing, he recognizes his classmates for their strengths and good qualities. His dad is understanding and loving, and even one of the teachers -- the librarian -- comes through for Nate, reigning in a bossy yearbook editor.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Big Nate Flips Out, the 10th title in the humorous Big Nate series, centers on public embarrassment. Nate humiliates his best friend by accidentally revealing a sworn secret in public, and he wants to take candid photos for the yearbook just to catch people in unflattering moments. But the takeaway is reassuring: Everyone feels embarrassed sometimes, and it usually isn't a big deal. There's a fair amount of teasing and name-calling of kids and ridiculing of teachers, but older elementary and middle school kids will feel right at home in Nate's world.
Is It Any Good?
Like the other books in the popular Big Nate series, there's a fair amount of sophomoric humor and mocking students and teachers in BIG NATE FLIPS OUT. Before he's hypnotized, Nate is a regular in detention and a frustration to his teachers. You may not want your kids to emulate Nate, but they certainly will empathize. Beneath the butt jokes lies a sweet message about learning to laugh at yourself, as well as at others. And once you get past his mischievous manner, Nate is a good kid who sticks up for the underdogs when it counts.
The mix of narrative text and comics -- some representing Nate's work -- make for a lively, funny read. Author Lincoln Peirce again works in some secret code, inviting kids to engage on a closer level.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.