Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Slob by Ellen Potter

Owen Birbaum, age 12, is the fattest kid in school. His younger sister Caitlin, now called "Jeremy" after joining GWAB (Girls Who Are Boys) is much braver than he is. His oreos continue to disappear from his lunch bag despite his genius traps to ensnare the hand of the culprit. And worst of all, his gym teacher has made it his personal agenda to make Owen's life as humiliating and horrible as possible.

Thankfully, Owen is also brilliant. One IQ point below genius as a matter of fact. And now he's on a mission to solve some ongoing perplexing miseries. Like the continuing disappearance of his oreos, with the creepy new kid who may or may not carry a switchblade in his sock being the #1 suspect. And finally getting his machine "Nemesis" to piece together what happened on The Horrible Day that changed everything for him and his sister.

Slob is a Juvenile fiction book that delivers on every level: clever storytelling, unique characters, humor, and Life Lessons Learned. Owen is sometimes a sad character but never pathetic. His humor and big heart make him an ideal hero for this genre.

However. It's one of those For Kids But Also For Adults Who Like Books For Kids sorts of books, which makes it hard to categorize. It has this twinge of sadness running through it, but I think kids could relate to the Gym Teacher from Hell. And it IS really funny. A lot of Juvenile/YA books are crossovers that appeal to a wide audience, but this often confuses me because I'm not sure who to recommend it to. I'm not sure if I would have loved it as a kid the way I do as an adult.

The point is, you can't really fail with this one. So if you're tired of hormonal vampires and obnoxious love triangles and Serious Topics, this will be a breath of fresh air.

Book Source: Local Library.

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