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Updated: September 30, 2013 14:07 IST
book worm

Life in Middle School

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The Wimpy Kid is back. Get a peek into the riotous life of Greg Heffley.

Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid-The Third Wheel (Book 7 of the Wimpy Kid series), will have you rolling with laughter from the first page. Greg Heffley, the middle school boy rues the fact that he had started writing in his journal a little later than he desired, as whoever would end up writing his biography would have a lot of questions about his early life. Quite a loss to the world not knowing about Greg’s early life!

The books starts with Greg’s brief but hilarious account of the time he spent in his mothers’ womb. “Back in those days, it was just me swimming around in the dark, doing backflips and taking naps whenever I wanted.” Poor Greg, being the second born, he always gets the worst deal: he is handed down his older brother Rodrick’s used stuff (clothes and toys). His younger brother Manny adds to his troubles by being the object of his mother’s attention.


Caught between two siblings is no joke. The only thing Greg gets that had earlier not belonged to Rodrick was a Baby Adventure Action Walker, a toy fitted with a million little gadgets that one could entertain oneself with, it also came built in with a cup holder. The BAAW can make a child move around without actually walking. Cool, isn’t it?

It’s in pre-school that Greg learns that he is way behind other children. Other preschoolers can write their names, count all the way to 50 and do their own buttons and zippers without any help from grown-ups. Insecure Greg adopts the policy of, “if you can’t beat them, slow everyone down by feeding them bad information.” Due to poor performance Greg is taken out of pre-school and admitted into kinder-garten.

The story takes a steep turn for the funny when Greg’s middle school announces a Valentine’s Day Dance. Unable to find a date as all the cute girls have already been asked out by the smart boys in his class, Greg takes the help of his good friend Rowley to help him out and make him look cool in front of the girls to snag a date for the dance. Greg even does a bout of babysitting (his date’s younger brother) to impress her and her family. The baby turns out to be a devil in disguise, giving Greg a nightmarish experience. Getting a girl is not easy right? Greg’s uncle Gary comes up with a few techniques that Greg can adopt to impress girls. Uncle Gary’s techniques are anything but good. In fact, they make Greg look stupid in front of the girls.

Due to an unexpected twist Greg gets a partner for the dance but there is a catch. It’s a group date. What happens in that single night shows that not everyone can be lucky in love. Jeff Kinney’s funny illustrations complement his story beautifully, as where the words end, the delightful illustrations take the story forward. Wimpy Kid fans will simply adore The Third Wheel.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney, Puffin

Interesting book maybe, but what we need is INDIAN writing, by INDIANS.
That is what will really capture the imagination of Indian schoolkids,
in a way that no foreign writing can!

from:  Rohan Nair
Posted on: Oct 1, 2013 at 18:10 IST
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