Life is never simple for Greg Heffley, but now that love is in the air things are even more challenging. A Valentine’s Day dance at his middle school finds Greg scrambling for a date. His best friend, Rowley, doesn’t have any prospects either, but that’s no surprise. At home, Greg’s marriage-challanged Uncle Gary moves in, and his advice meant to help Greg find a date for the dance doesn’t always prove the most useful.
No matter how many of these books I read, I’m always frustrated by the fact that Greg remains such a self-centered, unfeeling jerk. When I think of wimpy kids, I think of say, Ned Bigby from Ned’s Declassified, who is overall a good kid, but just nowhere near to being popular, and so tiny he gets picked on a lot. In every Diary of a Wimpy Kid book, Greg’s inability to sympathize or care about anyone other than himself makes him an unlikeable character for me. I don’t feel sorry that things turn out for him the way they do because he deserves at least half of what he gets.
What I will say, however, is that the Lil Diva (11) and the Lil Princess (9) love these books. They read them for entertainment value alone. I have to admit they are a laugh a minute. And honestly, I feel the girls need books like this that are light reads, because we always have two books going at the same time, and the other is usually heavily immersed in drama. Alongside The Third Wheel we’ve been reading The Eleventh Plague by Jeff Heirsch. This is dystopian fiction. The main character, Stephen, has lost family members to the influenza, and now his father is in a coma, leaving him feeling very much alone. Definitely no laughs in that one.
While the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series is never going to be my favorite, with The Third Wheel, Kinney’s characters are just as funny and outlandish as they were at the beginning. If your kids enjoyed other books in this series, they will love this one.
Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂
Reading level: Ages 8 and up
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Amulet Books; First Edition edition (November 13, 2012)
I bought this book from my daughter’s book fair. This review contains my honest opinions, for which I have not been compensated in any way.