Kristel's Reviews > Me! (Just Like You, Only Better)

Me! (Just Like You, Only Better) by Jim Benton
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Jamie Kelly might possibly be the most obnoxious middle-school girl ever. In this twelfth installment in the popular Dear Dumb Diary series, Jamie reveals her prattling thoughts on the centuries-old tradition of children copying off each other. As she prepares for her birthday, Jamie also discusses her love of music, her less-than-kind opinions of her “friends” and her parents’ inability to recognize their own lack of cool (a fate suffered by many her age). Young readers will like the text variations that denote different emotions, like yelling in all capital letters, or bolding a word for emphatic derision. Jamie’s diction tends to be similar to the writing found online in chat or Facebook conversations, including the use of misspellings like “kewt” and frequent appearance of “LOL.” Juvenile readers will enjoy the many pencil drawings Jamie includes in her diary entries. They are quite detailed and use mechanisms typically found in comics such as thought bubbles, sound effects, and dramatic faces especially eyes and mouths drawn with heavy strokes. From the adult reader’s perspective this story offers a succinct picture of how trends start—and end—abruptly in middle school. Unlikely to entertain readers over the age of thirteen, Dear Dumb Diary #12 can stand alone but fans will clamor for all the books in the series. Recommended for purchase by public libraries on the basis of this is what ten year old girls will want to read.

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