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Middle School Is Worse Than Meatloaf: A Year Told Through Stuff
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Middle School Is Worse Than Meatloaf: A Year Told Through Stuff (Ginny Davis #1)

3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  2,786 Ratings  ·  433 Reviews
Ginny has ten items on her big to-do list for seventh grade. None of them, however, include accidentally turning her hair pink. Or getting sent to detention for throwing frogs in class. Or losing the lead role in the ballet recital to her ex-best friend. Or the thousand other things that can go wrong between September and June. But it looks like it’s shaping up to be that ...more
ebook, 128 pages
Published June 28th 2011 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers (first published July 24th 2006)
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Sep 15, 2007 Betsy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I remember being 13 or so and talking with a much older cousin of mine. When he asked me what grade I was in I told him seventh and he chuckled to himself. "Man, that was the worst." Was it? At the time I couldn't quite figure out what he meant. Sure middle school was awful but sometimes it's hard to separate yourself from what you perceive as "normal". Looking back on it now, I can see clearly just how awful that age is for a whole bulk of humanity, but who has the guts to go on out and say it? ...more
Oct 28, 2009 Holly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: grades-5-8, funny
This would probably appeal to lots of middle-school girls. The story is told entirely through photos of notes, magazine articles, objects, receipts, lists, school assignments, drawings, IM screens, etc., many written by the main character (Ginny) and various people in her life, such as her mother, her delinquent older brother, her best friend, and some of her teachers. This gimmick got a little tiring to me--it seemed that she communicated almost entirely through notes with her family members, t ...more
Patrice Sartor
GENRE: Fiction, realistic fiction, humor.

SUMMARY: Ginny hopes that her mom gets remarried, worries over her older brother Henry, and is frustrated with the antics of her younger brother Timmy. Plus there is her ex-best friend and her new best friend, her to-do list, and her New Year's resolutions that concern her. All of Ginny's life during the entire 7th grade is told through crumpled up notes, report cards, newspaper articles, cartoons, tests, and more "stuff."

EVALUATION: I picked this title
Feb 12, 2016 Dolly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: children who enjoy reading graphic novels
This is a wonderfully refreshing and candid story told through various items in a scrapbook-kind of style, but the entries were from different locations and even from screen shots of an old Mac.

While the story is very serious in places, there is a lot of subtle humor, too. I love how a simple trip to the drugstore could lead to an expensive trip to a hair salon as well as a pricey plumbing bill.

The illustrations are filled with multimedia formats that really help to tell the story. It's an unu
May 06, 2014 ReGina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids
I'll be the first one to admit that I am not a fan of the graphics in novels. My kids love Diary of a Wimpy Kid - I find the drawings distracting. However, this book is an interesting concept. There are a variety of things - tickets, notes, bills, IMs - that are used to tell the story. However, I find that there is a lot of the story that is left untold this way (but that does make a great opportunity to cover inferences!). I would recommend this book for 5th to 7th grade reluctant readers. The ...more
Ginny's seventh grade to-do list includes ten items, including lofty goals such as "Get a dad." and "Get the role of the Sugarplum Fairy in the Nutcracker.", as well as more mundane goals like "Ignore horoscopes whenever possible." Unfortunately for Ginny, it does not mention having the dog eat her science fair project or breaking the jacuzzi jets with watermelon bubble bath.

The unusual format of this book allows the reader to follow Ginny's year through the ephemera of everyday life. Drug stor
Feb 25, 2009 Cornmaven rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-school
It's too bad this is limited to middle school, because a lot is still relevant through high school,imho.

Almost an altered book thing, and that's what makes it very interesting. My daughter, who does not like reading all that much, kept peeking over my shoulder each time I turned the page, and got into it enough to pick it up when I finished it. So it's not going back to the library just yet.

The images are wonderful, the writing is perfectly average middle school. Middle school teachers can say w
Anne Marie
This is a neat idea for a book - told through stuff like letters between family members, report cards, doodles, instant messages (you can tell this book wasn't written pre-2000), and school reports. I enjoyed it - quick read but wasn't all fluff. Middle school is a struggle for most kids - and this book showed Ginny's experience.
Ginny Messina
Nov 05, 2007 Ginny Messina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I just loved this book! The “stuff” through which the story is told includes to do lists that Ginny, the protagonist makes, notes to and from her mom, report cards, and text messages. The graphics are outstanding and the story is very funny.
Chloe Allen
Mar 24, 2010 Chloe Allen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Girls,People who hate meatloaf
Recommended to Chloe by: My teacher,Ms.Marrs
This book is totally amaze!!! My favorite part is when Ginny gets the card from grampa joe and he signs it, Love Grampa Joe (The old guy in flordia). AHHHHH this book is SOSOOOSOSOSOSOSO goood!!!!!! ;B
Apr 28, 2010 Emily rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 17, 2015 Jordan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would recommend to any one who likes graphic novels. It a year told by stuff. there's lists.i really liked this book.
Jul 25, 2008 Kaitie♥ rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Sucks! Totally confusing and boring. I read 5 pages before I put it down
Really good. Loved the format and the humor.
Nico Pocho
Jan 10, 2017 Nico Pocho rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: grade-7
I think this book is exclusively unique because it shows a life of a normal teenager in middle school showing all her problems and struggles throughout the year, but the unique part is, is that Jennifer L. Holm writes the book with a lot of pictures in the background of homework assignment, lockers, pens and school things to show what Ginny the protagonist is doing to confront bullies or make new friends. The style of this book is kind of like Diary Of A Wimpy Kid but it has much more different ...more
Jan 26, 2017 Jaimee rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this while waiting at my son's middle school for a celebration and found it to be cute and entertaining. A glimpse in to the mind of a middle schooler turning teenager, it made me laugh out loud a few times. I like that it was not your typical book, but rather told by letters, pictures, assignments, post its, and other odd communications. Though there were a few deep issues imbedded in there, this book kept it light and through the eyes of a tween.
Nov 16, 2016 Nikita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Middle Scool Is Worse Than Meatloaf is the title and I agree. This book has letters, tests, emails, and lots of things that shows Ginny's life in middle school. What I would have liked is that there was some more setting and structure because sometimes the pictures or letters weren't enough. I still liked the book as it represents a common problem involving middle school. I recommend this book.
I thought this was an interesting way to tell a story. The reader has to observe and infer in order to understand what is happening. 3.5 stars.
Jan 18, 2017 William rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pretty Short but it was really funny
Jan 04, 2017 Isabella rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is about a seventh grade girl who tells about her school year using all of her stuff like letters, messages, notes, flyers, etc. She tells about how she has a very rough year and shows how she starts giving up, until one amazing thing happens.

This book was one of the first graphic novels I liked reading. It did only take me an hour to read, so I know that I can't read this kind of book to improve my reading, but it was a nice break from the book I do read. Overall, this book was real
Sep 28, 2016 Rory rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think this book was pretty good. If you like reading somewhat unorganised work then this is really for you. Jennifer L. Holm writes this book in a way that will latch on to readers, because just like the title says it is told through all of the main characters stuff. Overall it is a really fun book to read and I really enjoyed it.
Sue Leatherman
Ginny Davis keeps a scrapbook of her 7th-grade year of school as she embarks on the strange new world of Middle School with excitement and expectation. The scrapbook begins with Ginny's school shopping list, her class schedule, and "Ginny's Big To Do List!!!"

Each page records a moment in Ginny's life. There is the note about Mary Catherine Kelly, her former "best friend," who conveniently forgets to return Ginny's favorite pink sweater and then spreads a rumor around school about Ginny's older
Reviewed at:

Middle School is Worse than Meatloaf: A Year Told Through Stuff begins as Ginny starts 7th grade and her life was a mix of ups and downs. Her father passed away when she was younger; however, Ginny's wish has come true and her mom has a new, nice boyfriend. Her brother who used to be her hero and friend is getting into trouble left and right. And her best friend is no longer her friend because Ginny got a lead part in a ballet they were in. Se
Jessica Pennington
Middle School is Worse Than Meatloaf is a beautifully made graphic novel, depicting a story about a young girl named Ginny and her experiences and adventures at the age of 12. Throughout the book, Ginny deals with her attentive mother, her mom’s new boyfriend, an older brother who gets in more trouble than Ginny can understand and her younger brother Timmy who she loves to babysit. Far away from Ginny and her family is her fairy godfather, Grandpa Joe. Grandpa Joe is the saving grace to Ginny’s ...more
Addy Kovach
Sep 23, 2016 Addy Kovach rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-2017
It was funny!
Reviewer's Name: Kelly Urtz

Are you a nosy person? Do you like reading notes and journals? Are you a detective? Can you figure out things by looking at pictures and making links? If so, you will love Middle School is Worse than Meatloaf. You will learn the story of Ginny Davis’ seventh grade year through stuff. You will read and examine her “stuff” includes her notes, report cards, bank statements, journal entries, homework assignments and newspaper articles. It’s more like reading a maga
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jordan Parker
This memoir is the story of seventh grade Ginny, but this memoir isn’t like most. It is told through her “stuff.” The memoir includes shopping lists, to-do lists, report cards, notes, haiku assignments, e-mails, bills, newspaper clippings, instant messages, science labs, cards, ballet programs, and much, much more. The memoir follows the turbulent twists, turns, and changes of the seventh grade life. I love this text because it can be used as an authentic model text. Most of the literature stude ...more
This is a very visually attractive book, fully illustrated throughout on glossy brightly colored pages. It's told as a scrapbook of ephemera: newspaper clippings, homework, notes on the fridge, bank statements, greeting cards, ims, poems, to do lists... but it still manages to pull together to tell the story of a difficult year in the life of a tween just becoming a teen. I was surprised at how much emotional resonance it had actually, I was expecting something much more frivolous, but over the ...more
Teresa Scherping
Ginny Davis is starting seventh grade and chronicles her year with a sort of scrapbook of sketches, report cards, receipts, instant messages, cards from Grampa Joe, doctor's notes, to-do lists, and more. Ginny wonders, "Is middle school worse than meatloaf?" Seventh grade brings a lot of challenges, from bad hair dye jobs and braces to a new stepdad and a brother in trouble with the law. How will Ginny ever survive the seventh grade? Find out by piecing together the ephemera of a year in the lif ...more
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Jennifer L. Holm is a NEW YORK TIMES bestselling children's author and the recipient of three Newbery Honors for her novels OUR ONLY MAY AMELIA, PENNY FROM HEAVEN, and TURTLE IN PARADISE.

Jennifer collaborates with her brother, Matthew Holm, on two graphic novel series -- the Eisner Award-winning Babymouse series and the bestselling Squish series. She is also the author of several other highly pra
More about Jennifer L. Holm...

Other Books in the Series

Ginny Davis (2 books)
  • Eighth Grade Is Making Me Sick: Ginny Davis's Year In Stuff

Share This Book

“Three Meatloaf Haikus

Oh yucky meatloaf
sitting under the hot lights
so gray and gristly.

Nothing tastes worse than
you, not cauliflower or
even lima beans.

And what is that weird
thing sticking out--a whisker?
hair? a rubber band?”
More quotes…