Great Illustrated Books

Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Wimpy Kid series)

By Jeff Kinney

Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2007
Pages : 224
Suggested Ages: 9 and Up
ISBN: 9780810993136

The surprise hit of the year, this easy-to-read first person expose of middle school life told by sixth grader Greg Heffley through cartoons and hand-written journal entries has sold more than a million copies. It's throw-yourself-on-the-floor-and-roll-around-howling hilarious, and boys, especially, are inhaling this book. All those 97-pound weaklings out there can really identify with a kid who figures he's somewhere around 52nd or 53rd most popular at school and whose slacker older bother, Rodrick, belongs to a heavy metal band called Löded Diaper. Reluctant readers? Not anymore.

 Thankfully, for the kids who will demand another book just like this one, there's a sequel, Rodrick Rules, that readers may decide is even funnier, and there are more to come. Guaranteed, there will be copycat titles in the next few years by other writers who latch on to the contemporary, clueless, and earnest style of this post-Captain Underpants phenomenon. Go to to find out more about the books and the author. If you want to read all of Kinney's original comics on which the books were based, go to Kids will want to compare their print version to what's online. And then check out the author's blog at

Reviewed by : JF.


If you love this book, then try:

Byars, Betsy. The 18th Emergency. Viking, 1973. ISBN-13: 978-0099408673

Gantos, Jack. Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key. Farrar, 1998. ISBN-13: 978-0064408332

Gauthier, Gail. A Year with Butch and Spike. Putnam, 1998. ISBN-13: 978-0399232169

Getz, David. Almost Famous. Henry Holt, 1992. ISBN-13: 978-0805034646

Gorman, Carol. Dork on the Run. HarperCollins, 2002. ISBN-13: 978-0064409704

Kinney, Jeff. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Last Straw. Amulet, 2008. ISBN-13: 978-0810970687

Kinney, Jeff. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules. Amulet, 2008. ISBN-13: 978-0810994737

Korman, Gordon. No More Dead Dogs. Hyperion, 2000.

Korman, Gordon. Schooled. Hyperion, 2007. ISBN-10: 0786856920

Korman, Gordon. This Can't Be Happening at Macdonald Hall. Scholastic, 1978. ISBN-13: 978-0590405348

Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds. The Boys Start the War. Delacorte, 1993.

Park, Barbara. The Graduation of Jake Moon. Atheneum, 2000. ISBN-13: 978-0689839856

Spinelli, Jerry. Loser. HarperCollins, 2002. ISBN-13: 978-0060540746

Tarshis, Lauren. Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree. Dial, 2007. ISBN-13: 978-0803731646

Critics have said

"Kinney ably skewers familiar aspects of junior high life, from dealing with the mysteries of what makes someone popular to the trauma of a "wrestling unit" in gym class. His print debut should keep readers in stitches, eagerly anticipating Greg's further adventures."
Publishers Weekly

"The first of three installments, it is an excellent choice for reluctant readers, but more experienced readers will also find much to enjoy and relate to in one seventh grader's view of the everyday trials and tribulations of middle school."
Kim Dare, School Library Journal

"Readers can expect lots of middle school humor and exaggeration. Kinney manages to inject enough humor in the simple drawings to make them an integral element in the book."