The Biggest Klutz in Fifth Grade

Bill Wallace, Author Holiday House $15.95 (148p) ISBN 978-0-8234-0984-6
Famous for his accident-prone escapades, Pat Berry is tired of being teased by Neal Moffett--``the greatest athlete in Hoover Middle School history.'' After landing under a chain-link fence during a football game, Pat rashly agrees to a bet which requires him to remain in one piece for the rest of the summer or kiss Kristine Plimpton (aka Blimpton) in public. As Pat tries to avoid the emergency room, his cause gains support from other boys who are fed up with Neal's bullying. Although the lad loses the bet, the appearance of a newly shapely Kristine turns the situation around and acknowledges him as the true victor. Though many readers may enjoy a novel told from a boy's perspective, Wallace negates this potential plus by making his female characters mere physical backdrops. Also, some may wish that Pat's triumph was more substantial. The central issues here--male friendships and the anxiety brought on by peer pressure--get lost as the plot lags between descriptions of sports games and bikini-clad neighbors. Ages 8-12. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 08/31/1992
Release date: 09/01/1992
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 160 pages - 978-0-671-86970-0
Prebound-Glued - 184 pages - 978-0-7807-4079-2
Prebound-Glued - 160 pages - 978-0-7857-2941-9
Prebound-Sewn - 148 pages - 978-0-606-05756-1
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