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Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Not Reading

(Charlie Joe Jackson #1)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  5,129 ratings  ·  617 reviews
Charlie Joe Jackson may be the most reluctant reader ever born. And so far, he's managed to get through life without ever reading an entire book from cover to cover. But now that he's in middle school, avoiding reading isn't as easy as it used to be. And when his friend Timmy McGibney decides that he's tired of covering for him, Charlie Joe finds himself resorting to ...more
ebook, 224 pages
Published July 5th 2011 by Roaring Brook Press (first published 2011)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,129 ratings  ·  617 reviews

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Tommy Greenwald
Aug 13, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
I wrote it, therefore I love it.
Anyce Paul-Emile
Do you not like to read and want an idea on how to get out of it? Well then, you should read Charlie Joe Jacksons Guide to NOT Reading. I should warn you not to take any of his advice, because what happened to him might happen to you. This is a dramatic fictional story. There were times in the story that I felt very emotional, mad, sad, shocked. I will talk more about this in the third paragraph, but for now, a summary.
This story is about a boy who hates, I repeat HATES reading, a lot. The story
Kim Tomsic
Dec 31, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade
CHARLIE JOE JACKSONS GUIDE TO NOT READING by Tommy Greenwald (Roaring Brook Press/July 2011 ) for middle grade readers is about Charlie Joe, a reluctant reader, whose cool-dude reputation is centered around the fact that hes never read an entire book from cover to cover.

An advanced copy of CHARLIE JOE JACKSONS GUIDE TO NOT READING arrived in my mailbox along with a towering pile of vacation mail. As I scattered bills and letters across the kitchen counter, I realized I couldnt start a new bookI
Jun 27, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The unreliable narrator. It's a staple of adult literature, and a relative newcomer to the world of childrens lit. Even books for teens are more likely to sport these first person neer-do-wells than titles for the 9-12 set. It can be done mind you, but its tricky territory, made all the trickier if the narrator is always being on the up and up with the reader. I think the closest you can usually get to an honest-to-goodness unreliable character is something like Charlie Joe Jacksons Guide to Not ...more
Jul 03, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I won this is a Goodreads First Read. Yay!

As a middle school teacher, I found this book funny and appealing. There are times when Charlie's comments sound a bit too much like the comments of an adult who is a good kid-watcher, but overall his voice is well done. I gave it three stars instead of four for a reason that won't apply to most people. Over 50% of my kids are Latino, and like the excellent "Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie" this book is so entrenched in white, middle class culture that
marcy marshall
Jan 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*Spoil Alert *
Do you hate reading?If you answered yes then Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to not reading is a perfect book for you. This is a realistic fiction mixed with comedy that will have you laughing until it hurts.

This story is about a boy who hates reading and still manages to get through life without even reading an entire book cover to cover.The words and phrases that are in the book are used today.The setting takes place in middle school were most of the conflict start to happen.Charlie
Jun 25, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: middle-schoolers, fans of Big Nate, grownups who hate diary-of-a-wimpy-kid
Shelves: reviewed
Charlie Joe Jackson is an avid non-reader. He has never read a book cover to cover, and he's proud of it. (Except for The Giving Tree. Which has, like, sixty-two words in it.) This book will inspire all reluctant readers in their efforts to avoid the written word, and give helpful tips on how to do it.

The great thing about this book is that it will satisfy both the middle-school reader and his/her parents, which is a thing wondrous and rare. On the one hand, Charlie is actually a nice, funny,
Colby Sharp
Aug 18, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mg-novel
I struggle with bokos that are focused on kids being slackers and not like reading. Diary of a Wimpy Kid is not my favorite (Is that a nice enough way of saying that I dislike it very much?). Recently, I read the James Patterson book "Middle School: The Worst Years of my Life" and it kind of falls into the same category of "Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to not Reading". I am sure that these books can do a decent job of getting reluctant boys to read, but at times I wonder if they do more damage ...more
Mar 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There were sine helpful tips in here but I won't use them anytime soon.
Jan 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Are you not a big fan about reading? This book is for you. Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide To Not Reading, literally had some "facts" (excuses to not read) in the book that probably every kid has tried to say to parents and or teachers. I enjoyed this book more than I expected. If you don't read, take a chance and read this book! This is a realistic fiction book that like I said, has humor in it and life lessons. I recommend this book to those non-readers and just anyone in general.

The setting
Deb Tyo
Jun 07, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humorous
Chapter 1

"If you're reading this book, you don't like reading.

In fact, you do whatever you can to avoid reading, and the fact that you're holding a book in your hand right now is kind of shocking.

I know exactly how you feel; I'm one of you.

Just remember: you are not alone. We'll get through this together."

In Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Not Reading, Tommy Greenwald creates a character who is very honest with readers. Charlie Joe tells us that this book serves two purposes: "One, it will
Tommy Greenwalds new book Charlie Joe Jacksons Guide to NOT Reading is a perfect book for the non-reader or reluctant reader in your life! Charlie Joe has made it all the way to Middle School without ever, EVER, reading a book cover to cover. It hasnt been easy, but he has come up with an arrangement that has carried him this far successfully until now. When his teachers discover what hes been up to, will Charlie Joe be able to keep up his track record?
In this hilarious book, Charlie Joe speaks
Tina Lowen
I'm conflicted about my rating for this title. It isn't quite a four for me, nor is it really a three. I'd give it three and half stars if I could. I'm clearly not the intended audience for this book, which I'm sure is impacting my score.

I enjoyed the book's humor and found myself liking Charlie Joe, despite his willingness to go to incredible lengths to avoid reading a book. I have to applaud the author for a few things which are difficult to find in books for young people these days: Charlie
Jun 03, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Alright I lied. I read the first quarter and the last quarter.
Too listy and the premise didn't work for me.
Reece Butcher
Mar 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Stephanie  Weatherly
I really enjoyed this fun YA read. I actually used it in one of my classes for modeled reading. The short chapters and humorous tone of the story kept readers engaged.
Ezzieh Hassan
May 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jacob Gonzalez
Apr 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Do you really not like to read? Well if you don't this would be a perfect book for you because in this book it gives you good tips on what reading can do to your body. This book is a realistic fiction with a little bit of comedy. In my opinion I thought this was a terrific book because I relate him to me by hating reading so much.
Charlie Joe Jackson hates reading more than anything. He had to read a book for a test about clinques were bad for kids. Also, every time he had to read a book he'd
Shaeley Santiago
Mar 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: intermediate
Charlie Joe hates reading. So far, he's managed to not read any books his entire school career. However, the big project is coming up where you have to pick a topic and research it including reading several books. Who can Charlie Joe find this time to read his books for him now that his parents and teachers are on to his tricks? Interspersed with the story are tips from Charlie about how to avoid reading.

This book made me think of The Strange Case of Origami Yoda and other books in that series
Joyce Yattoni
This is not a book I would have picked up for myself, as I tend to go for the more serious "stuff". I was pleasantly surprised because although I do not like the fact that middle schooler Charlie Joe Jackson doesn't like to read his character is hilariously funny and I do see his character in some of my students. You know who you are. Charlie never ends up liking to read by the end of the story, but he does manage to learn and he learns a lot about growing up and navigating middle school ...more
Charlie Joe Jackson REALLY hates to read. For twelve glorious years he has managed to avoid it almost completely (exception: Shel Silverstein's "The Giving Tree" because it only has 62 words). But middle school is proving difficult ground to manipulate his way around the written word. It doesn't help that his best book-reading buddy has begun to blackmail him, and now there are girls to pay
attention to too. But Charlie Joe comes up with a daring master plan that almost works. This is a quick and
I didn't think I'd like this book, but I had to read it so I could lead a book club on it. Even two or three chapters in, I thought it was going to be just another smart-ass wimpy kid knock off that underestimates the brainpower of juvenile readers and assumes that the class of kids now known as "reluctant readers" will only pick up shallow swill. (Ahem...let me climb down from my accidental soap box now...)

And mostly it was.

The End.

Addendum: The avid upper elementary readers in the book club
Dan Rogers
I picked this book with expectations of it being one that would both amuse and entertain. I hoped that it might even appeal to my reluctant readers. Unfortunately it failed on all points. This is simply a story about a kid who takes pride in not reading. As a result he goes to great lengths to maintain his nonreader reputation. So, as far as I'm concerned, just another attempt to tell kids that it's okay to be mediocre. Fortunately, the book is too long and involved to get my reluctant readers ...more
Maggie Dornay
Nov 03, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Charlie Joe Jacksons guide to not reading was not a good book in my opinion. It was kind of boring and not funny even though the author was trying to be funny. The character's in it are of course Charlie Joe. Another character is Timmy who helps Charlie Joe. The conflict in the book is Charlie does not want to read so he asks some one to do it for him. This does not turn out good. Something I liked about the book is all the tips he gives us about how to not read. Something I did not like is it ...more
The cover of this book may say that this book is for kids who hate to read, but it will appeal to those kids who like to read as well as those who dont. Filled with humor, it nevertheless illustrates the error of trying to deceive teachers and parents. You may not have a Charlie Joe in your life, but if you know a middle schooler, make a gift of this book to him or her. You will be encouraging a nonreader to become reader, or maybe even inspire a reader to become a writer. I received this book ...more
Penny Peck
Sep 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-ya
If a sixth grader liked DIARY OF A WIMPY KID an wanted another book that was similar, I would recommend CHARLIE JOE. It doesn't contain as many cartoon drawings, but it is funny, thoughtful, and original. Even some of the teachers are nice! There are some cartoons, and the premise of the book, about a boy who avoids reading, is believable. He is smart and can read, but doesn't think books are cool. Lots of funny lists are included, which add interest. Some nonstereotypical girl characters make ...more
Charlie Joe Jackson is here to help! He has written a book that not only serves as a guide to help get out of reading, but, if you absolutely have to read, he has written a short book. Why is someone who hates reading writing a book? Read to find out :)

This was my first Charlie Joe Jackson book and I thought the characters were very well written. I think this book would appeal to both boys and girls who want something fun to read.
Jorge T
Sep 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This book would be a good choice for kids who want a guide on how to not read. It is mainly about the main Character Charlie who has never read a book in his life. One day when one of his boo reports is due his friend timmy who always reads the books for Chalie and gives him the answers refused to give him the answers. And he does not know what to do next. If you want to find out what happens next read this book and find out. This is a really good book. READ THIS BOOK
I have a problem, in general, in books written for middle-grade readers that are heavy with boy/girl drama. I know that Charlie Joe and his friends are in middle school, but 9 and 10 year olds don't want to read books in which girls are described as hot and which kids are 'going out' is a major plot point.
Josh Jackson
Great read for reluctant readers in the cross-over range, fifth grade to seventh. Charlie Joe would rather do anything than read - even setting up his crush with his best friend. This book has good humor and lots of short chapters, perfect for many middle-aged boys. The journal style is easy to read and has a Diary of a Wimpy Kid feel.
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Tommy Greenwald's book GAME CHANGER has been named an Amazon Best Book Of The Month, a 2019 YALSA Top Ten Pick for Reluctant Readers, and a Junior Library Guild Premier Selection. Tommy is also the author of the CRIMEBITERS, CHARLIE JOE JACKSON and PROJECT Z series, among many other books for children.

Day-job-wise, Tommy is the Co-Founder of Spotco Advertising, an entertainment advertising agency

Other books in the series

Charlie Joe Jackson (6 books)
  • Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Extra Credit (Charlie Joe Jackson, #2)
  • Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Summer Vacation (Charlie Joe Jackson, #3)
  • Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Making Money (Charlie Joe Jackson, #4)
  • Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Planet Girl (Charlie Joe Jackson, #5)
  • Charlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Not Growing Up (Charlie Joe Jackson, #6)

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