Parent reviews for Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Book 1

Common Sense says

Laugh-out-loud-funny series start tucks lessons in stories.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 9+
Based on 98 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 253 reviews
Parent of a 5 and 7-year-old Written byMangoFlamingo December 6, 2009

Some of the stuff in this book BUGGED me..

Ok, I only read the first 10 pages in the book store, I admit. But in the first 10 pages the main character talks about sitting between "two HOT GIRLS" in school and then speaks of one of them possibly liking him because he has a "cute butt". I had this book recommened to me in the book store for my 7 year old son. I paged through and thought it was cute until I hit those passages and that was it for me. My son is going to get enough sexualization through today's media as he grows, I don't need to introduce it to him at age 7. It really BUGGED me that this stuff was in there as I think he'd like the book style otherwise.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written by4femme May 7, 2010

More Negative Messages to Fill Kids Minds

I am shocked every time I hear an adults say this is a good book. Often, because their child who didn't enjoy reading actually read this book. This reminds me of adults that think Spongebob is good children's programming. I had to close the book after 3 chapters & was shocked at how negative this book was in every aspect. It's full of teasing, bad attitudes, unfriendliness, disrespect...the list goes on. Why fill young minds with garbage when there are endless GREAT options available.......Good Literature!! My 2 oldest daughters are voracious readers so I know finding great books takes time on the parents end.....but it is worth it!!

This title contains:

Adult Written byReader1117 September 30, 2014


I think that you should not let your kids under 7 read this. It's not inappropriate content like sex, drugs, or violence I'm worried about. It's Greg himself and the way Kinney created this main character. Greg is lazy. He doesn't like to do anything and usually tries to lie or heat his way out of it. For example, in the fourth book he just wants to play video games all summer and his dad wants him to go exercise an sends him outdoors. Greg decides to run around in his neighbors sprinkler so he looks sweaty. Then He goes inside and goes back to his video games. Also, he his very mean to his friend Rowley, a guy who's pretty immature but overall a good person. Greg always tries to change him. Greg constantly USES Rowley for many different purposes and isn't a true friend at all. Greg is EXTREMELY unappreciative for everything and doesn't care about who he hurts, annoys, or ruins things for in the process of getting his way or avoiding trouble. He is the exact opposite of what you would want as a main character: he sets horrible examples.

Another issue I have is the way Kinney wrote the book in general. The humor is disgusting (in the gross AND offensive way). My biggest problem with this book is the way the horrible author portrays the girls at Greg's school. They're dumb and easily manipulated by any guy that they find cute or attractive in the slightest way. They're always talking about how this "Bryce Anderson" has a "cute butt" and they're almost always seen giggling, laughing, or whispering. Something that offended me so much is the "Girls Rule" comic entered for the comic contest at Greg's school. Go ahead. Look up "diary of a wimpy kid girls rule" and take a look at what comes up. I beg you to. Sure, I'm a strong believer in equality between genders and "girl power," but this is just sickening. It's basically just showing that girls are dumb enough to write something like that and truly believe that they practically own the world and can just boss everyone around?

Come on Kinney. Is your goal in life to give kids the wrong ideas about the world? Oh yeah. About wrong ideas. The whole series gives kids the wrong idea about growing up and makes many kids actually believe that middle school is just like what happens in Greg's school.

It just makes me furious when I see reviews that say "come on protective parents. It's not inappropriate at all! It's a great book for kids and teaches them to learn from their mistakes!" Seriously? Learn from their mistakes? It's hardly even acknowledged in the book that what Greg does is wrong!

So, parents. Do you actually want your young kids reading this book after you've read this?
Parent of a 8-year-old Written byonemomstanding April 1, 2010

sneaky book

Got this book for my 7 year old who was "dying" to have because everybody else did. When he started reding some of the Disrespectful material in the book I took a look and Threw it away! One example is, when the boys are bullying and calling him ugly then hea says your mama thinks you're ugly then he calls his mom and she tells him he's Ugly!??????? Not something I want my child to model or think that's acceptable. Whatever happened to values? and respect? not popular in today's world, but I won't let my child read it because of this kind of content thrown in, with other things that are crude but Seem harmless.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Parent of a 14-year-old Written bygladtobemomof6 April 7, 2011

You can do better

Not good. I have six kids who love to read, but this isn't on their reading list. Wise up parents! The purpose of a book is not to make kids feel better about being immature, unkind, disrespectful, and lazy (in other words, normal middle-schoolers). The purpose of reading is to elevate the standards and inspire them to do better. Parents can do better, too, by leaving Wimpy Kid at the mall.

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Parent of a 2, 5, 7, and 9-year-old Written by6Sweets February 6, 2010

Why bother?

Why read it when there are so many other more positive books. The children who do read a lot of this series pick up quickly to the bad humor and unacceptable language. It is a quick read (no real challenge) and you come away with nothing positive. If you like bad humor, unloyal friendships, lacking of respect between the sexes - go ahead spend your time on it. Inappropriate middle school behaviors and poor humor are being marketed to young readers in this book.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Parent of a 5 and 8-year-old Written bythefournguyens June 5, 2010

Great for someone older than 9.

You can call me an over-protective parent anytime and that's fine. I prefer to limit what my kids are exposed to at this age. There is so much great literature out there that does not humiliate or include messages about bullying. While I think this book is amusing on a pre-teen kid scale, it is not appropriate for someone under the age of at least 10. Older children have a better ability to distinguish between what is funny in fiction and what it appropriate in real-life. Just because it's on the NYT bestseller list does not mean it's okay for younger kids. If a child thinks that it's funny when someone is bullied or humiliated, fiction or not, I think that's a problem.

This title contains:

Parent of a 7 and 10-year-old Written byMizMSB March 18, 2010

If it gets your reluctant reader reading, go for it, but be ready to talk about some things.

I'm thrilled for my son to be wanting to read anything, so I don't censor these titles, but I don't think Greg Heffley is a good role model. Unlike the reviewer above, I dont feel like the message that Greg needs to learn to be a better friend comes through clearly enough. My son reads one, then I read it, and then we talk about Greg Heffley's missteps. Parents should talk about how they think people should be treated.
Parent of a 9-year-old Written bychuey August 14, 2010

Negative all around

This young boy is already feeling oppressed by life's frustrations and trials. He is facing struggles you'd expect a middle-aged person to be coping with. He is buffeted by negative peers, inept and nasty adults and a variety of unpleasant life situations. That is a lot for a 12 year old (main character) to handle.
Adult Written byWiktoria W. February 2, 2020

Some parents are oversensitive

I don't know maybe some adults don't remember being kids?
You can't hide and protect your child from all the "bad things" in the world, that's just what life is. Kids know and understand more than you think, that's why you have to talk with them, and not make them live in a bubble. I actually read two of the books from this series as a teenager, when I spent the summer with my then around 8/9 year old cousin, and I enjoyed it a lot!
Adult Written byHannah1118 January 9, 2020

Not recommended

Before my child start reading this book can say she was a different person to what she b
ecome now. She's only 8 but I can tell that she mimics those characters in the book.she starts to disrespect me and her dad her school teachers which is something out of her character . Plz if you care enough for your child don't bother buying this stupid book
Adult Written bygs44631 February 7, 2020

Enjoyable read

I read the story out for my 7 year old daughter for most part and the deal is she will read atleast 30 percent on her own. The series is hilarious with lot of laugh out loud moments for the parents as well.

If you are looking for a role model that your child can emulate then this book is not for you. The main character Greg is lazy, manipulative and sometimes delusional. This is a story of a loser kid in that sense.

We live in an extremely political correct world where everyone is supposed to be 'good' and the 'best'. This is a refreshing departure from such snowflake narratives. Greg makes grand plans and keeps messing up on them time and again leading to some really funny episodes. Maybe that's why kids love this series. My daughter has finished four books so far and she wants me buy more.
There are harmless references to dating etc which i skip or tell her you will understand when you are older. If you have a television at home ,you kid is not gonna be exposed anything worst than that..
Adult Written byAlfiewood November 2, 2019


I started this series in year 4 and I’m in year 5 now. It CHANGED MY LIFE FOREVER. The book follows the life of Gregory Heffley, and his older brother Rodrick, and his younger brother, Manny. Greg’s best friend is named Rowley, and the two are always together everywhere they go.
There’s only 3 words to describe books like this. BEST BOOK EVER.
Adult Written byDakota_23 December 30, 2019

Great book for kids and young adults!

I loved these books when I was younger. When my brothers turned 8 I gave them these books and they absolutely loved them! The series teaches kids deep thinking and how to handle situations that kids go through, in some cases, in a humorous way!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written byCanada puppy 6363 June 24, 2019

Do not buy any of these books for your kids EVER

If you want your kid to be exposed to inappropriate stuff then let your kids read them .

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adult Written byQualityReviews May 28, 2019

A Classic And Good For Kids

Diary of a Wimpy Kid is a classic comic book that kids LOVE. Your kid should be a little mature, but when they reach the age of 7 they will LOVE this series and want to get the second book right away.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Parent of a 8 and 11-year-old Written byGarD July 14, 2018

Great Series.

Greg's no role model, but that's where the humor lies. It's hysterical and the kids love reading about his antics. Both my kids (& my husband) loved this series. Our school library had to take the series off the shelf for a while because it's all the kids wanted to read. That's a nice problem to have.
Adult Written bymervetekcan May 19, 2016


As a (more mature) 13 year old, I thought this book was genuinely funny. However, unlike younger kids, I've already established what is right and wrong. Cheating, lying, manipulating, and acting dumb "just to get less work" is all in this book, and when my younger eight year old brother reads this, I get paranoid of what exactly he's picking up. He doesn't seem to want to go to a gifted program at school, thinks less of school, and I think it is because of this book! To older audiences, Greg is a very interesting character (which is the prevelant reason why the series is so popular) but he is one of the most irresponsible fictional characters I have come across in a long time. And since the story is told from HIS viewpoint, it even makes it worse! His mind thinks of the all the previously mentioned things to be perfectly fine. I would absoluetly not recommend this book to...more vulnerble kids.

On the plus side, the novel IS truely funny, with its charming digital drawings and witty main character- who keeps the story lively (ignoring his bad influence) throughout the entire book.
Parent Written byhybridauth_user 371 March 30, 2016

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Greg hated going to middle school. Everything went wrong for Greg all the time. Greg signed up for safety patrol and the school newspaper cartoonist. Someone then got the cheese touch. Greg struggled against Rowley about being popular. When Greg and Rowley went to school Rowley said, "What to come to my house and play?" Now people say hand out not play. Being with Rowley can make Greg not be popular. Rowley can ruin Greg's chance to being popular. Sometimes when you do something and another gets blamed for it is good to say the truth and get in trouble. Sometimes you have to do the right thing.Rowley got in trouble for terrorizing kindergartners with a worm. Greg told the truth to Rowley and said that Greg did the worm thing. Greg payed the price and got in trouble. Greg had to suffer the consequences. Sometimes it is better to tell the truth and you will feel better about it. Greg did the right thing and other do the right thing too. I thought the book was good because some things can ruin your friendship. Greg and Rowley are not friends anymore because of the worm thing. That worm thing ruined Greg's friendship with Rowley. Sometimes we fight with our friends and never become friends. Rowley and Greg weren't friends for a long time. That happens with everyone yout fight and never friends.I also thought the book was good because some things can go wrong but, sometimes you can fix what you did wrong. In the book Greg fixed the thing about the cheese. Greg saved Rowley when Greg said, "I throw the cheese away to the trash can." People do things wrong sometimes and then your feel bad about it and then you fix what you did wrong. I would recommend this book to other people because some people have the same problems Greg has to deal with. Greg has to deal with a lot of problems from school and home. Some of us have the same problems as Greg. Some of the problems that Greg has are hard to deal with. Some people's problem are difficult to deal with all the time. I also would recommend this book to other people because sometimes people have big and little brothers that you mess around with and you always get in trouble. Greg got in trouble for messing around with Manny his little brother. Greg and Manny were playing with a little piece of yarn and the yarn fell in Manny's mouth and swallowed it. Greg got in trouble of the yarn.Don't mess around with your siblings or you will get in trouble. Lots of things can happen to you we you mess around like getting in big trouble. I gave the book 5 stars because Greg always tried to be the best at everything but, everything went wrong. Greg want to be the best dressed and class clown. Greg wasn't any of those things. Some people want to be the best at everything but, no one can. You want to be the best at all the things but, everything is done badly. I also give the book 5 stars because I learned if you always try your best you can achieve something. Greg tried his best to get to be the school newspaper cartoonist. Greg try his best and got to be the cartoonist. Lots of kids try their best and they complete something good. Trying your best is worth doing it. I also give the book 5 stars you learn how you need help from another person too you can't do everything by yourself. Greg needed help from Rowley to do the comic strips. Everyone needs help sometimes or all the time. Rowley needs help from Greg when the cheese disappeared. Greg and Rowley always help each other. I chose age 12 and up because these kids will understand the things we do in middle school. Greg has to do a lot of things in middle school Kids that are 12 will get all the things that happen in middle school. Greg has to go to middle school and 12 year old kids do too. Greg and 12 year old kids have the same life as Greg in middle school. I chose a 12 and up because kids will understand how the teachers yell at the students. Greg gets yelled by a lot of teachers when Greg gets in trouble. When Greg did that with the worm thing Greg got yelled really hard. Everyone gets yelled at in middle school. Some kids get in trouble a lot and get yelled all the time. I chose great messages because the mom told Greg something that was great and important and Greg did the right thing. Greg's mom said,"You have to do things right." Greg did the correct thing and his mom was happy. Sometimes you have to do the things correct. Doing things right is a great message. I also chose great messages because the teachers wanted to stay save at school. The teachers go safety patrols to keep the school safe and no bullying. The school stayed safe with the safety patrols and no bad things happened in the middle school. I chose great role models because Rowley's dad and Greg's mom do the best for their sons. Rowley's dad doesn't let Rowley play any violent video games. Some parents protect their kids from violent things. Greg's mom doesn't let Greg show any bad things to Manny his little brother and Greg doesn't show any bad things to Manny never. Some parents protect their kids a lot even when they go to a place. I also chose great role models because the teachers of Greg never say or show bad words to their students. Greg and his group wrote bad words on a piece of paper and the teacher got mad but, didn't say a bad word to them. The teachers never say bad words to their students. Some teachers are mean and nice to their students. I didn't chose educational vaule, too much violence, too much sex, too much swearing, too much consumerism, too much drinking/drugs/smoking because there wasn't any of that in the book. There wasn't any of those things in the book.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byMommyof6* November 26, 2011

This book is realistic

It think that some of the parents who are offended by the nature of this book should look around and take stock of what's really going on in the world; because there are a plethora of events happening in the world that are much worse than a realistic story of a 7th grade boy who's trying to discover his identity. This book is filled with humor and is a very realistic depiction of the life of a typical 7th grader as well as a realistic depiction of REAL families. If you want your children to be totally sheltered from reality, that's up to you, but you are not preparing him or her for the real world in that case.

This book is excellent for students who dislike reading because it's an easy read as well as easy for kids to relate.

Also, this book could be an excellent opportunity to discuss such topics as respect, values and staying true to yourself. If you're worried about your child being corrupted, talk to him or her about these topics and your views as a parent.