Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel by Jeff Kinney – Reviewed by Gigi McAllister and Class

Students from elementary to high school and even some adults have anxiously awaited the release of Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid The Third Wheel. My fourth graders were no exception.  As Jennifer Tazerouti suggests, we took advantage of all the hype by having a book release celebration.

 

The arrival of the Scholastic box brought cries of delight. The students beamed as they received their new treasures.

wimpy kid box

 

Although it took me a bit longer, many of the students devoured the book in one day or even in just a few hours.  They loved it so much that I decided to have some of the biggest fans help me with this review.

 

We all agree that this 7th installment in the series does not disappoint.  Greg and the gang have to deal with the middle school awkwardness of crushes, a big dance, gossip, and trying to fit in.

 

The approach of a middle school Valentine’s dance puts pressure on Greg to find a date.  After some amusing failed attempts, Abigail agrees to go with him. Unfortunately his best friend Rowley has not found a date.  Greg wants Rowley to come to the dance as his “wing man.”  Even after Rowley comes down with chicken pox (which Greg later thinks was just acne) Greg convinces him to go.  At dinner, Rowley and Abigail seem to get along very well…maybe a bit too well.

 

Jeff Kinney captures a middle school dance perfectly.  The girls all go to the restroom together and dance together while the nervous and confused boys look on.  And what is a middle school dance without some drama and girls crying over a boy.  Unfortunately it is Greg’s date who ends up crying, surrounded by a circle of concerned friends. If you’ve ever been to a middle school dance, I’m sure you can picture it.

 

There are so many hilarious tidbits throughout this book. Some are downright laugh-out-loud funny.  But don’t take my word for it.  Here are a few quotes from some of the die-hard fans.

 

“I liked when Greg didn’t have a date to the Valentine’s dance so he sent a bunch of candy grams to himself so the girls would want to go him.”  L.F.

 

S.G.’s favorite was  “…when Greg talks about when these 8th graders told Greg that there was a secret elevator.  They sold him an elevator pass for $5 and there really was no elevator.”

 

G.F. and N.S. liked “…the part when Greg kept a bathroom stall all for himself.  He had a bunch of toilet paper, a radio and a pair of extra shoes to make it look like the stall was taken.”

 

A.L. laughed “When Greg babysat Wesley. Wesley locked him in a laundry room and then  rode his bike all over the house and crashed it down the basement stairs.”

 

H.E. enjoyed  “…when a ‘mad pantser’ pulled down Vice Principal Roy’s pants. We never found out who that was.”

 

One of A.D.’s favorites was “When Manny was trapped in a play structure tube so Greg climbed up to get him.  Greg was too scared to come down so a waiter had to come get both of them.”

 

M.L. liked “The part where Greg’s Uncle Gary moves in and has nightmares about monkeys in the walls.”

 

Loyal and novice Diary of a Wimpy Kid readers will love this book. The story is enhanced by just enough of the author’s adorably simplistic, but effective illustrations. Jeff Kinney has done it again…The Third Wheel is sure to be as beloved as the rest of his best-selling series.  I will let one of my students have the final word, “This is the best one yet”. ML

 

Gigi McAllister is a fourth grade teacher in Maine. She’d like to thank her amazing students for helping with this review. Gigi admits to being a children’s book addict and is thankful that her understanding and supportive husband does not get too upset about her monthly Amazon bill.  She loves to hear about new and interesting books and can be found at http://thelatebloomersbookblog.blogspot.com and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/thelatebloomersbookpage.