The Name Game!

Marissa Moss. S&S/Wiseman, $9.99, (80p) ISBN 978-1-4424-2676-4; $5.99 trade paper ISBN 978-1-4424-1738-0
First there was Amelia, then Max, and now Daphne, the worry-prone narrator of Moss's third diary-style series, Daphne's Diary of Daily Disasters. Readers will quickly realize that Daphne isn't exactly one to look on the bright side: though she has an evident sense of humor, her affinity for melodrama emerges as she chronicles her first day of fourth grade in hand-lettered text and doodles on pink lined paper. Disaster strikes early when her teacher mispronounces her name while taking attendance. " ‘Daffy?' DAFFY!! As in ditzy, dumb, dingbat—all kinds of ‘D' words that DON'T describe me," Daphne writes indignantly. That evening, her father suggests that she come up with a nickname for her teacher, Mrs. Underwood. Using the obvious twist on that name causes Daphne some trouble the following day, but her teacher defuses the situation, and Daphne comes to realize that mistakes happen. Moss understands the way that minor slights can feel like apocalyptic, life-altering traumas to children (and, yes, adults), and Daphne's frustrations, candor, and slightly mean brand of humor feel entirely genuine. Also available: The Vampire Dare! Ages 7–10. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/02/2011
Release date: 07/01/2011
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