A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Rafe continues to mature in Middle School: From Hero to Zero, the 10 book in the popular Middle School series by James Patterson and Chris Tebbetts. While there's some ugly behavior by kids including ostracizing, threats, intimidation, and fighting, there are important moments of emotional vulnerability, connection, and loyalty. Rafe imagines his dead twin brother as a confidant and supporter. There's a little bit of gross-out humor, notably an epic incident of airsickness.
What's the story?
MIDDLE SCHOOL: FROM HERO TO ZERO finds Rafe on a class trip to London. He's excited, but worried because none of his friends is going. Rafe tries to win over classmates by being kind, but his efforts either backfire spectacularly or are ignored. The exasperated principal puts him in charge of the class project on the trip, putting Rafe in the awkward position of working with Jeanne, whom he has a crush on -- and her jealous boyfriend is furious. To top it all off, he's stuck rooming with his chief tormenter, Miller the Killer, who makes him sleep in the bathroom. Rafe gets blamed for sparking an epidemic of barfing, crashing into priceless treasures, and getting himself lost in London -- but he makes surprising discoveries about friendship.
Is it any good?
The latest in the funny, fast-paced Middle School series has Rafe feeling trapped with his greatest tormenters -- but he finds his way through it by being observant, kind, and emotionally courageous. Middle School: From Hero to Zero continues to show Rafe's growing maturity even as he stumbles awkwardly through misadventures only sometimes of his own making. Co-authors James Patterson and Chris Tebbetts pack in the laughs as they capture the everyday angst of a middle-schooler on the fringes of the crowd.
Much of the humor is in plentiful illustrations by Laura Park, showing how Rafe processes his worries and stress through exaggerated drawings and cartoons. Lots of fun and plenty of heart.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about Rafe's difficulty getting past his classmates' expectations in Middle School: From Hero to Zero. How can kids overcome their reputations in school or other groups?
How do Rafe's creative talents help him connect with others?
Does your view of "Miller the Killer" change?
- Authors: James Patterson, Chris Tebbetts
- Illustrator: Laura Park
- Genre: Coming of Age
- Topics: Friendship, Great Boy Role Models, Great Girl Role Models, Middle School, Misfits and Underdogs
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: jimmy patterson
- Publication date: March 5, 2018
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 288
- Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
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