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Secret Identity (Shredderman #1)

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  1,802 Ratings  ·  176 Reviews
Alvin Bixby: Hulking, knuckles of steel, hideous breath, foul temper. Kids call him: Bubba.

Nolan Byrd: Puny, power walker, math genius, can’t keep shoes tied. Kids call him: Nerd.

Bubba has been the bane of Nolan’s existence for five long years. So when Mr. Green asks the class to become reporters, Nolan decides he’ll write an exposé—on Bubba. He doesn’t want to sign his n
Paperback, 144 pages
Published April 25th 2006 by Yearling (first published February 10th 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,855)
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Jun 11, 2008 Megan rated it it was ok
So here's the deal...I must be a full-fledged mother now, because my radar was going off like mad on this one. Shredderman is the alter-ego of a bullied kid who decides to get even with the school jerk. He puts up his own website, posting mean pictures, and taunting songs about said mean boy. Now, I'm all for the underdog, and esp. when he overcomes a jerk, but isn't that, like, cyber-bullying??? Not a good idea, or lesson for the kids reading it!
Aug 18, 2009 Tricia rated it liked it
I had some mixed feelings about this: I felt like Nolan came a little too close to bullying behavior himself in his effort to unmask the school bully. And I didn't like how he was hiding so many things from his parents (the mom-code-of-conduct requires me to insert that comment! :^). But there were many things to like about the book, and they outnumber the concerns. Beyond the sneakiness, he does have a good relationship with his parents and they seem like a healthy, normal family. He starts to ...more
Jan 06, 2016 Megan rated it liked it
I'm going to start by saying my brother told me to read this book because he liked it, so I read it. His review of the book would be a lot different from mine, but he's also 4 years younger so that's probably why. Anyway, I thought that Shredderman was an okay book. I didn't think it was very exciting. I liked that he did something about his school's issues. I guess it had a good morals- labels shouldn't limit, don't be afraid to do something about a bully, and be yourself- but I think I didn't ...more
Clare Cannon
Mar 07, 2012 Clare Cannon rated it it was ok
Shelves: 04-8yrs
Fun story that has a good message, about a little kid who wants to stand up to his bullies and spread truth and justice through his small part of the world. The trouble is, he goes about it the wrong way, and even though it's only a story, kids who try this could get into serious trouble. He builds a website in the name of 'Shredderman' that publicises (with photos and videos) all the bad things the bully does to other people. 'Shredderman' is there with his camera waiting to catch 'Bubba' out: ...more
Apr 03, 2016 Jerry rated it liked it
I have mixed feelings about this book, the first in a series for upper elementary age children. On the one hand, it was a light-hearted read, full of empowering ideas, and it has positive messages about kids' relationships with parents, teachers, and classmates. And it's similar in style to the very popular Wimpy Kid series, only more preachy and less humorous. On the other hand, the method the main character uses to get revenge on a class bully, with the support of a teacher no less, shows poor ...more
Jarrod Call
Jun 02, 2012 Jarrod Call rated it it was ok
I felt like it is an entertaining book for children in later elementary school, but I am a little hesitant to recommend it to everyone because of the themes of the book. It has good messages of standing up for yourself and trying to make a difference, but the way the other promoted those ideas were inappropriate in my mind. Instead of working with teachers or parents to make a difference, Nolan took it upon himself to cahnge things via a website he created to "catch" the bully in the act of bull ...more
Jun 05, 2016 Boni rated it it was ok
Shelves: chapter-mg
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Karis (YA Litwit) Jacobstein
I really didn't like this book, and not because I'm not a fan of graphic novels. Yes, I guess it was good that Nolan stands up for himself against the bully, Bubba, but he went it about it in some pretty ugly ways, in my opinion. It was like he turned into the bully himself, and he did it in a cowardly way (online, through a newspaper, etc.). This is not the message to send kids. Stand up for yourself in positive ways, or better yet, ignore the bully altogether and you take his/her power away by ...more
Jun 14, 2011 Deborah rated it did not like it
Shelves: juvenile-fiction
Bubba is the school bully. He has awful nicknames for everyone, ruins his classmates' lives, and worse yet, none of the adults have been able to catch him in the act. Hippie Mr. Green gives his class the assignment of creating a newsletter about an aspect of the students' town. For this assignment, Nolan, a real nerd with a goofy fast walk, decides to create a website outing Bubba and his mean feats under the assumed name of "Shredderman."

Even though Bubba is a jerk, I though Nolan was mean, po
Edward Creter
Shredderman deserves to have its own movie series! Here's why: a small school boy moonlights as a reporter for his website after witnessing the undignified cruelties of the school bully, masquerading as Shredderman, the lone crusader who stands up for the little man (aged 9-13) and defends truth and justice. No one knows but the hippie teacher who figures him out and asks to be his sidekick. This book even has a lesson IF and only IF the daring can find it. Hint: even the villain is not that bad ...more
Mar 01, 2013 Wendy rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
I was expecting this to develop into a lesson about cyber bullying and the fact that you can't justify cruelty with "he-started-it," then I realized there was only one or two chapters left--not enough time to address the issues. Instead, the adults give explicit approval of Nolan's revenge. Creepy. As a teacher, I'm pretty sure Mr. Green, while otherwise great, could be fired for encouraging a kid to post a hate site, even if it's about a truly awful child.

On the other hand, I read the entire b
Jan 08, 2011 Kendra rated it it was ok
Shelves: juvenile
This would have ranked higher for me except for one major flaw in the theme for me: it doesn't seem right to encourage children to fight bullying by humiliating the bully. Isn't that bullying? Granted, in this book the teachers and parents were doing nothing to stop the bully, but it still seems like it would have been better for him to take his "evidence" right to a teacher instead of broadcasting it on the web. No wonder the bully didn't really change at the end. Now, the bully has two reasons ...more
Dec 10, 2014 Erin rated it did not like it
Alvin Bixby: Hulking, knuckles of steel, hideous breath, foul temper. Kids call him: Bubba.

Nolan Byrd: Puny, power walker, math genius, can’t keep shoes tied. Kids call him: Nerd.

Bubba has been the bane of Nolan’s existence for five long years. So when Mr. Green asks the class to become reporters, Nolan decides he’ll write an exposé—on Bubba. He doesn’t want to sign his name to it (that’d be suicidal), so Nolan creates a secret identity for himself—on the Internet. He launches a
Ellen Brandt
Mar 13, 2010 Ellen Brandt rated it liked it
Shelves: older-elementary
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 03, 2011 Kit rated it did not like it
Shelves: juv
"Hey, kids! Is someone bullying you at school? Get back at them by cyberbullying them on the Internet!"
As a former bully victim, I loved it. As an internet safety teacher, I hated it.
Mary Lee
Dec 28, 2008 Mary Lee rated it liked it
Is cyber-bullying okay if you use it against a real-life bully?
Megan Anderson
Aug 30, 2015 Megan Anderson rated it did not like it
Shelves: formystudents, 2012
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The first in a series, Shredderman:Secret Identity sets up the story of Nolan Byrd, a bullied fifth grader who is given an assignment to write his own news article.

Seizing the opportunity, Nolan turns his investigation upon the school bully and surreptitiously records the bully's activities to report on an eponyomously-named website that Nolan develops. Combined with typical late elementary-early middle school level satire, Nolan's website helps expose the bully to the administration and gives
Mar 04, 2013 Jnase1 rated it did not like it
Nolan is a fifth grader who gets picked on by a bully named Bubba. Actually, Bubba picks on everyone, even kindergarteners. Teachers don't seem to notice his behavior, which to me is unbelievable. How can you not know that a fifth grader cut someone's hair in class or that he flipped a whole table of lunch trays belonging to kindergarteners? In real life, there would be so many parents complaining to the administration that this kid would for sure be in an alternative school. But in this story, ...more
Jun 06, 2015 Lincoln rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya-fiction
So I am reading a 5th grade book for the In2Books reading mentor program. Shredderman is supposed to teach kids about bullies I suppose. Bubba is the bully who picks on people and calls them names. Nolan is the Shredderman...He gets his name because his teacher likes to play guitar and on one of Nolan's paper's as a compliment he said "You Shred man"

Anyways...they get the assignment to report on something so shredderman decides to do a report on Bubba and expose him to the world of what a bully
Peter Heinrich
Cute lesson on how to use technology to combat a bully when parents and teachers don't seem to notice him tormenting everyone (and won't believe you when you try to bring it to their attention). This premise is so silly that the real message is almost lost—stick up for yourself and you can change things for the better, even if it's just a little bit.

Or is it? The fact is that Shredderman's anonymous, mean-spirited little online exposé of Bubba actually amounts to bona fide cyber-bullying. Oops.
Allison Parker
Jan 29, 2011 Allison Parker rated it really liked it
Nolan is fed up with the school bully "Bubba." Thanks to Bubba, every other kid has an awful nickname: Nolan is "Nerd," not just to Bubba, but to his classmates, too. When the class gets an assignment to create a newspaper front page, Nolan jumps at the chance to expose Bubba for the cruel troublemaker he is. Thanks to his mad computer skills, Nolan can complete the task through a website under a pseudonym: Shredderman!

I thought this book was great. Nolan is totally believable through his frustr
Apr 24, 2014 Ann rated it really liked it
This new series from a young people's author is terrific. Wendelin gets it all right from a bullied boy's perspective. And most of the adults don't look like idiots (in other words, they're realistic). Her dialog is snappy and resonates because it's so true to life. Boys who probably won't read her Sammy Keyes stories (because Sammy is (gasp!) a girl) will love this character.
May 09, 2011 Heidi rated it really liked it
This is a pretty fun little series. For children, it might be best, though, to use it as a guided activity. Otherwise, it might come across that you have to have a lot of money and be really intelligent to overcome bullies, which seems counter to the point. It's also sometimes a bit on the mean side. I haven't finished the fourth and last book, yet, but it seems also that one of the good points made by his teacher in this book hasn't been followed through, in that Mr. Green suggested he use the ...more
Morgan Gibson
May 06, 2013 Morgan Gibson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book portrays the serious issue of bullying in schools in a manner that would be able to connect to many students. Many students are bullied in a much harsher manner, but most of the students are exposed to the type of bullying that is seen in Bubba. In the book, Nolan, given the name Nerd from the school bully Bubba, finally takes a stand against bullying. Often all it takes is for just one person to start some plan of action to curb bullying.
I was a little surprised at the approach taken
Donna Siebold
Jul 15, 2015 Donna Siebold rated it liked it
Nolan Byrd is a nerd! He is sick of this nickname and the bully who gave it to him. He develops a website and a secret identity that reveals the bully's antics. Along the way he develops personal strength and helps stop the bullying of his classmates.
Dec 16, 2009 Chris rated it it was ok
I'm not the target demographic for this book, but I found it pleasant enough. A fun little romp that actually might get kids to think about what they do on a day to day basis.

Plus, I think any author would do well to read books like this from time to time, simply because they are such tight little examples of story. There is always something Nolan is worrying about or trying to overcome. And it does a fine job at building up the action/obstacles that he must defeat. We SEE him change from scene
Oct 24, 2015 Marge rated it really liked it
Good story about bullying. I will be reading this with 5th graders and well will need to have a discussion about how Shredderman used the internet to get back at the bully. Cyber bullying is not the answer.
Shredderman: Secret Identity by Wendelin Van Draanen is a story every person who has been to school knows about. The bully seemingly runs the school until the other kids in class get fed up. Nolan Byrd, aka "The Nerd" finds a way to get back at all the name-calling, coercion, and grief that Bubba throws his way day after day. His teacher... peace-loving, ponytail-wearing, and inspiring Mr. Green excites Nolan with his clever writing/reporting project. He finds a way to expose Bubba's threatening ...more
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Bullies 1 2 Jun 18, 2013 01:19PM  
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Wendelin Van Draanen has written more than thirty novels for young readers and teens. She is the author of the 18-book Edgar-winning Sammy Keyes series, and wrote Flipped which was named a Top 100 Children’s Novel for the 21st Century by SLJ, and became a Warner Brothers feature film with Rob Reiner directing. Her novel The Running Dream was awarded ALA’s Schneider Family Award for its portrayal o ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Shredderman (4 books)
  • Attack of the Tagger (Shredderman, #2)
  • Meet the Gecko (Shredderman, #3)
  • Enemy Spy (Shredderman, #4)

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