A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Getaway is the 12th book in the best-selling Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney. Like the ninth book, The Long Haul, Wimpy Kid Greg is on a family trip. This time the Heffleys head to a tropical resort. Greg, a first-time flyer, has many travel fears. These fears lead to pictures of people getting sucked out of an airplane, experiencing a water landing, being surrounded by sharks after a water landing, and drowning in a shipwreck. Plus Greg fears he's swallowed a sea horse and imagines it coming out of his chest. Often in this series, it's Greg's antics and some potty humor that drive the story. There's some of that, with the usual pictures of people on toilets and standing at urinals. But this story focuses more on Greg's fears about travel and doing new things. Dad tries to impart a lesson: Don't lose your temper and do something stupid. Greg gets another lesson from the experience: When his family gets in trouble, his family runs for it. There's some adult drinking shown at restaurants and the resort, some teen and adult smooches, and a nude beach with nothing shown, plus a coughing Greg gets stuck standing with a group of smokers outside the airport.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
In DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: THE GETAWAY, Greg and his family are getting ready for Christmas and nothing's going right. They're behind on the decorating, and Greg's parents are arguing. That all turns around when a commercial for a paradise resort comes on TV. It's where Greg's parents had their honeymoon. At dinner that night, there's a decision: Instead of Christmas, the whole family's present will be a trip to that resort. But first they have to get there on Christmas Eve. Through hectic holiday traffic to the airport, through the security line, Greg makes it onto his very first plane flight. He stresses about everything from the safety video to the pilot leaving the cockpit to being seated between a couple with a baby. When Greg's family arrives at the resort, with the wrong luggage, the misadventures continue. And there's a spider in the bathroom. A big, hairy one.
Is it any good?
Kids heading off on their own getaways will enjoy tucking into their travel seats with this funny 12th edition, so long as they're not already afraid of flying. Or maybe if they're just slightly plane-phobic they'll laugh when Greg repeatedly harasses the flight attendants, asking questions such as "What good will a whistle do in a water landing in shark-infested waters?" Overall, The Getaway is milder and is most similar to the other family-travel story in the series, The Long Haul.
When Greg's on a family trip, there's a little less mischief and a little more time spent on everyone's expectations of what a trip should be. Mom is always trying to get the perfect family photo, and there's no such thing. Rodrick is off trying to be a cool teen, and there's no escaping his family. Dad is bent on showing off to everyone what a seasoned traveler he is, and of course it backfires. Drinking tap water was a really bad idea. Manny is a typical toddler. And Greg takes it all in, adding his wimpy attitude to the proceedings. There are a few seconds of the story where Greg realizes just how cool snorkeling is. But in Greg's world, that kind of bliss never lasts.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about Greg's travel fears in The Getaway. Are those things you worry about when traveling? What's the best way to calm those fears?
What do you think about the picture showing teens all on their phones at the resort (page 132)? Is that what you like to do on vacation?
What do you think of this 12th edition? Have you read the other Wimpy Kid books? Which is your favorite? Why?
- Author: Jeff Kinney
- Illustrator: Jeff Kinney
- Genre: Humor
- Topics: Adventures, Brothers and Sisters, Bugs, Holidays, Misfits and Underdogs, Ocean Creatures
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Amulet Books
- Publication date: November 7, 2017
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 224
- Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Last updated: November 15, 2019
Our editors recommend
For kids who love humor and graphic novels
Themes & Topics
Browse titles with similar subject matter.
Top advice and articles
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.