Hard Luck

Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet, $13.95 (224p) ISBN 978-1-4197-1132-9
Is Greg Heffley’s self-absorption catching up with him? Maybe so, since he spends much of the eighth book in Kinney’s bestselling Diary of a Wimpy Kid series bemoaning his lack of friends. Rowley, his former right-hand man/doormat, is occupied with his new girlfriend, and Greg is so desperate for companionship that he even tries befriending class weirdo Fregley. “I could mold him into exactly the kind of friend I wanted,” says Greg, who’s basically looking for someone to lug his schoolbooks around and “scout ahead for dog poop” on the sidewalk. Clashes with Greg’s extended family also figure in, as does Greg’s discovery of a Magic 8-Ball. Kinney once again gets in plenty of funny jabs at pop culture and everyday kid life, from poster board science fair projects (“Does It Float?”) to Greg’s rediscovery of his flannel “Body Blankie,” which, while supremely comfortable, proves to be a liability during gym class. With Kinney sticking to the same school- and family-based brand of situational humor that made the previous books so popular, his legions of fans will likely devour this eighth offering as well. Ages 8–12. Agent: Sylvie Rabineau, RWSG Literary Agency. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 11/11/2013
Release date: 11/01/2013
Genre: Children's
Compact Disc - 978-1-4703-9563-6
Prebound-Sewn - 224 pages - 978-0-606-32062-7
Ebook - 217 pages - 978-1-61312-588-5
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