Parents' Guide to

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Meltdown

By Carrie R. Wheadon, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Epic neighborhood snowball fight perks up 13th installment.

Book Jeff Kinney Humor 2018
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Meltdown Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 9+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 7+

Great Depth

Introduces so many new characters! Giving the series a bigger cast, and it even gives backstory on each of them. To top it all off, it ends with an EPIC snowball fight, featuring all the characters that were introduced. I was really upset when it ended. 10/10! :)

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
1 person found this helpful.
age 10+

It’s great

It’s a bit scary

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2):
Kids say (24):

In this 13th Wimpy Kid, Greg's up to his usual bad ideas until he lands on a stellar one: an epic neighborhood snowball fight, the kind kids dream of as soon as the first flurries fly. Well, he doesn't come up with the whole idea, but his snow fort gets things rolling. At the height of the battle, there are multiple forts, team flags, shaky alliances, and a guy selling specialized snowballs. There's even a spy. And -- many parents will love this -- it all comes together because Greg's mom forces him outside, telling him that video games don't teach kids how to interact. In just one afternoon of snow-covered mayhem, kids have to plan, negotiate, strategize, and cooperate. This part of The Meltdown is such a great reminder of how amazing getting outside and looking for the good kind of trouble can be.

The rest of The Meltdown is less cohesive and engaging. There's a school report Greg forgot about, a hot school, and then a freezing-cold school, smelly socks, kids spreading germs, breaking into Grandma's house, and so on. Mixed in, you'll find an introduction to the neighbor kids who'll stage the fight later, but it's not done smoothly. Perhaps this hodgepodge fits in with the diary premise, but luckily it doesn't last the whole book. For the finale, author-illustrator Jeff Kinney includes a full-page spread of the snowball melee. That's how you know he's having a ball as well.

Book Details

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