A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Good choice for reluctant readers, especially tween and teen boys. David's experience becoming a YouTube sensation could lead inspired parents to discuss their rules for viral videos.
David faces loneliness but is resilient in this coming-of-age story, thanks in large part to his supportive friends and family.
Positive Role Models
Readers will find it easy to identify with endearing David and his middle school anxiety. The main adults are engaging and supportive, as they help David navigate through the harried time that is middle school.
Violence & Scariness
There's a fight at school, threats of violence, and stories of bullies hurting kids.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
The majority of the relationships are simple middle school boy-girl "in like" relationships. There are several adults who have engaged in adultery and left their families for others.
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Mild name-calling, such as "moron" and "jerk."
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Products & Purchases
The main character wants to have his own show like Jon Stewart, so celebrities are mentioned as he does mock interviews.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this coming-of-age story is set in middle school, so there are bullies, threats of violence, mild name-calling, and boys and girls who "like each other." Readers -- even reluctant readers -- will quickly work through this book; they will find it easy to identify with endearing David and his middle school anxiety.
Is It Any Good?
This is a delightful, funny, and insightful book. Main character David is a middle school boy who is completely endearing, and readers will easily identify with him and his middle school anxiety. Gephart's book continues a great trend in children's literature, looking at a boy's view of middle school and the issues that boys face. There are great spots of laugh-out-loud humor, including tidbits on smelly armpits, zit forecasts, and top 6 1/2 lists.
One thing kids can take away from the novel is David's commitment to his passion. The other thing: be careful what you put online. Kids will really enjoy David's ups and downs, and the novel is wonderful for reluctant readers.
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.