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 Third Wheel is the seventh installment in Jeff Kinney's hugely popular Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. Like the other Wimpy Kid books, this humorously told and heavily illustrated story recounts the experiences and observations of hapless middle schooler Greg Heffley. This book includes Greg's "memories" of being in the womb, and the awkwardness of family restaurant dining, sharing space with an uninvited relative, and most of all, struggling to get a date for the school dance. There's a very small amount of cartoon violence, as well as a few cartoon kisses, a "Mad Pantser" (who pulls down guys' pants), and loads of other funny but painfully embarrassing moments. Parts of this book series have been made into movies, too.
- Parents say
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What's the story?
In the seventh volume in Jeff Kinney's mega-popular series, DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: THE THIRD WHEEL, central character Greg Heffley describes his formative years -- even reaching back to his "memories" of life in the womb. Through journal entries and Kinney's trademark pen-and-ink illustrations, Greg also recounts a school controversy about toilet paper, a "Mad Pantser" who pulls down guys' pants at the most embarrassing moments, his deadbeat uncle, and his struggle to get a date for the school dance. As in the other Wimpy Kid books, Greg makes dozens of mortifying errors in judgment, and hilarity ensues.
Is it any good?
Jeff Kinney's capacity to embarrass his character, Greg Heffley, and amuse his readers seems to know no bounds. Like the other volumes in the Wimpy Kid series, this book is full of mostly tame, middle-school-type humiliation and laughs. Kinney's memorable illustrations are as dynamic as they are funny, and as always, they tell as much of the story as the narrative does. Wimpy Kid books have typically been popular with kids even as young as 7 or 8; however, as this particular installment focuses primarily on middle school life and the big dance (as opposed to family life), some of the youngest Wimpy Kid readers might not be as excited about this book as they were about some of the others.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about embarrassing moments. Have you ever been embarrassed at school? What happened? What did you learn from it?
How does Book 7 compare with the other Wimpy Kid books?
What aspects of Greg's middle school experience seem realistic to you, and what is exaggerated?
- Author: Jeff Kinney
- Illustrator: Jeff Kinney
- Genre: Humor
- Topics: Brothers and Sisters, Friendship, Misfits and Underdogs
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Abrams
- Publication date: November 13, 2012
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 224
- Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, Kindle
- Last updated: November 15, 2019
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