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Allergic to Birthday Parties, Science Projects, and Other Man-made Catastrophes (Alvin Ho, #3)
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Allergic to Birthday Parties, Science Projects, and Other Man-made Catastrophes (Alvin Ho #3)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  487 Ratings  ·  78 Reviews
What's so scary about a birthday party? Alvin Ho can tell you, if he's not too frightened to speak.

1. You might be dressed for bowling...but everyone else is dressed for swimming.

2. You could get mistaken for the piñata...or worse, the donkey, and get a tail pinned on you!

3. Someone might say hello...and expect you to say hello back.

4. You could eat too much cake.

5. You
Hardcover, First Edition, 186 pages
Published September 28th 2010 by Schwartz & Wade (first published January 1st 2010)
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Mar 07, 2011 rated it it was ok
I was disappointed with the constant "playing Indians" that occurred throughout the book, particularly as Look never addressed how such activities are distressing to living Native Americans and can be particularly damaging to children.

Normally I find the Alvin Ho books to be funny, but my discomfort ruined anything humorous that might have been in the book.
Oct 18, 2010 rated it liked it
Sure, it's all getting a little formulaic and schticky, but still good. Same good gender-bending/gender exploration stuff as in the first two books. I would feel remiss if I didn't mention the unfortunate "playing Indian" plot, which is really strange--seriously, how do these things still get through agents and editorial staffs? Look writes a delightful multi-ethnic cast, then has them "playing Indian" (complete with chief and princess costumes) throughout the book without a meta comment? How is ...more
Wendi Lee
I'm annoyed. The first two Alvin Ho books were great, they were funny and interesting and featured a non stereotypical Chinese American boy as the main character. It's rare to read a book with an Asian American character without an immigrant story attached, and as much as those stories are important and relevant, books with Asian kids just being kids are equally important.

Alvin is obsessed with dressing up in a caricature of a Native American ("deluxe Indian chief" costume). Blerghhh. There are
Jun 09, 2014 added it
Shelves: j-humor, 2014
If there was anyone who could tell me how to survive a girls' party, it was my cousin Bucky. Her real name is Lizard Breath. She's a girl. She's eight-going-on-eighty-eight, which means she was born with a teacup in her hand and a purse on her elbow. She goes to an all-girls school, which is where no boys are allowed on account of they might ruin things.

I love Alvin's voice. I think he's hilarious - maybe a little too hilarious for a second-grader. And now that I've paid this book a compliment,
Maya Orama
May 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This story is about Alvin ho. he was in the school bus sitting next to flea, a girl, while his brother and his friends were playing around. miss p told them to stop, So they did stop. flea was telling Alvin about the fun trip they are going to have. flea told Alvin that their going to see Henry Thorea. Alvin was already frightened about it. he was very scared. he was thinking how scary the grave will be like . Finally, the bus stopped. they were at the grave yard, then Alvin saw the grave of Hen ...more
Clare Cannon
Apr 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: 6-10 years+
Shelves: 08-12yrs, 04-8yrs

I love Alvin - his books are such a great combination of childish humour (that's still funny for adults too), little boy attitude (that means well so you can't get annoyed) and a genuine love and respect for his parents that just melts me. There's a tiny bit of boy humour too - but actually it's quite funny and doesn't take over the whole book, I don't think it goes too far.

Some of my favourite moments in this one:

Alvin's shopping with his mum, who wonders how long it's been since the two of t
Mar 27, 2010 rated it it was ok
Once again, Lenore Look brings us a funny and quirky book about Alvin Ho, a second grader trying to make his way in a world full of scary things.

As always, I love the way Lenore Look casually incorporates multiculturalism and diversity. Alvin just happens to be Chinese-American, and his classmates include Nhia, who is Cambodian, and Flea, who wears an eye patch and has a limp.

In fact, it is because Alvin Ho books are usually so inclusive that I am especially disappointed that this particular b
Arsh M
Jan 31, 2013 rated it liked it
I am currently reading Alvin Ho #3 by Lenore Look. I am at the part where Alvin and Flea are at a field trip to a cementry and meet a famous author named Ralph Waldo Emerson. I think me and Alvin Have somethings in common like we both like writing and like field trips. I think the author does a good job of describing the characters like he makes Alvin scared like when he when he sees the grave he gulp and hides behind Flea and makes flea not really a girl like nobody knew that Flea was a girl an ...more
Jocelyn Brame
May 11, 2017 rated it did not like it
I'm very disappointed with this installment in the Alvin Ho series. The portrayal of children playing Settlers vs. Indians was unnecessary, and Alvin's fixation on needing the perfect "Deluxe Indian Chief outfit with fringe" was troubling. This perpetuation of reducing Native Americans to stereotypes is unacceptable.
Kathleen Roberts
Sweet and funny

Just right for read aloud's and also independent reading. My nine-year-old loves it! Album and how it's funny, relatable, and always manages to do the right thing even if it's tough at first. Plus it's really swag
Sep 21, 2012 rated it really liked it

Look, L. (2010). Alvin Ho: allergic to birthday parties, science projects, and other man-made catastrophes. New York, New York, Schwartz & Wade Books.

Alvin Ho is an elementary-aged boy who is a bit of a hypochondriac. He has a Personal Disaster Kit (PDK) everywhere he goes, just in case anything should happen to him. He is old enough to know that he doesn't like girls, although he does have some girl friends. He gets teased about it at school, so he tries to impress the boys so he fits in be
Katie Fitzgerald

Alvin Ho: Allergic to Birthday Parties, Science Projects, and Other Man-made Catastrophes written by Lenore Look, and illustrated by LeUyen Pham is the third book about Alvin Ho, a second-grader who is "allergic" to just about everything. The first two installments saw Alvin and his PDK (personal disaster kit) taking on such terrors as piano lessons, the class bully, a camping trip, and getting trapped in a dishwasher box. This time around, he's plagued by a field trip where Louisa May Alcott cl
Saya menunggu kelanjutan dari serial Alvin Ho sejak terakhir membaca buku yang kedua. Tapi sepertinya memang belum ada yang menerjemahkan lagi. Setelah mencari-cari ebooknya, akhirnya ketemu juga. Entah kenapa saya suka dengan tokoh anak kecil penakut dan absurd ini.

Kali ini Alvin Ho dan teman-teman sekelasnya sedang melakukan tour mengunjungi beberapa rumah milik penulis terkenal. Yang Alvin ketahui pemilik rumah yang juga penulis terkenal itu sudah meninggal ratusan tahun yang lalu. Bagaimana
Beth G.
The third installment of this series about worry-ridden second grader Alvin Ho runs along the same lines as the previous two. Alvin is still carting his PDK (Personal Disaster Kit) everywhere he goes, still making lists, and still trying to navigate the tricky spots where the world of girls and the world of boys intersect, especially since his best friend happens to be a girl. There are some very touching moments when Alvin gets a little bit of guidance from his father, while Alvin's struggles t ...more
Jul 06, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: realistic
Drat. Book one was funny and book two was even funnier. Book three ... meh. Almost didn't laugh out loud at all (and for an Alvin Ho book you know that is a disappointment) until about three-fourths of the way through when Alvin goes to the mall with his mother to look for a birthday present for a friend. He's upset because he wanted something "And your mom is sweating from dragging you through the mall, and giving you that look that says she should have just ordered something on the Internet. ' ...more
EOL Juv Staff
Apr 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Alvin opens his third book with a list of things that could kill him. It includes karate chops, pork chops, chopsticks, and, of course, the kiss of death — which is why he has to carry around a PDK (Personal Disaster Kit) wherever he goes. We soon learn that the timid hero also has “allergies” to shopping, hospitals, and finger sandwiches. But the perpetually afraid and paralyzingly shy Alvin always seems to survive the disasters that are thrown his way, whether it’s a field trip to a cemetery o ...more
Edward Creter
Sep 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Like certain Chinese dishes, Alvin Ho is sweet, sour....and chicken! His third advent has him actually working on his greatest fear of all time, the one all men share: girls! He meets the "ghost" of Louisa May Alcott at a special museum in his native Concord, which isn't helping much since Ms. Little Women herself is, yeah, a girl and representative of SCARY WOMEN! Then the ULTIMATE HORROR! His best friend, a girl no less, has invited him to a girls' party! (Insert proper scream here.) Can Alvin ...more
Another fun book in the Alvin Ho series. While I still wouldn't recommend this for children reading by themselves - because of Alvin's whininess, cry-baby tendences, and fear of everything and lack of learning about any of the things he's afraid of as a way to help alleviate those fears - I do think the books would be enjoyable for children and the lack of redeeming qualities could be resolved if kids have an adult to read along with them. In this story, most of his terrors involve girls' partie ...more
There is a lot to like about this story, but after reading reviews by Native American readers I am unsure how to rate this book. Although I generally have my feelers up for cultural insensitivity when I read, I'm embarrassed to admit that, while reading, it didn't occur to me how a Native child would feel about Alvin & his friends playing Natives and Settlers. But the more I've thought about it, the more I understand why the stereotypical depiction is problematic in this day and age. So I fe ...more
Calvin  Kwon
Jul 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Alvin wanted to go to a boy's party but his dad thought he should go the girl's party since they were on the same day and same time. Alvin bought a present for the girl's party but he thought he shouldn't go so he wore the present and went to the boy's party. And at lunchtime at school, Alvin forgot to bring his nice bowtie shirt so the class took off all of their shirts off and started passing them around to other kids. And when they had their school picture, Alvin recognized that he was wearin ...more
Victoria Whipple
Alvin Ho is back, and he's still scared...of school, of girls, of dead authors, and more. Alvin's big problem in this book is that he's invited to a girls party. He doesn't know what to expect at a girl's party, so he seeks advice from his older brother and his cousin, who is a girl. They both give him advice, but you'll have to read the book to find out if it serves him well. He has another problem when his class goes on a field trip to visit the homes of some of the dead authors of his hometow ...more
Jun 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Another great addition to the Alvin Ho series. His character is so fun and quirky that you can't help but love him. He's a real kid and that shines through in so many ways. Look finds the perfect blend of silly and real by having the situations Alvin finds himself in be very real, but Alvin's imagination runs so wild that we get silly fantasies about what is happening and what might go wrong flashing through his head. I much prefer this scenario to the too typical pure absurdity found in other j ...more
Alvin can't believe that the Powers That Be could get things so wrong - when he wished upon a star to be invited to a friend's birthday party, he meant one of the guys who hang out in The Gang. So how come, when the invitation came, it was for a birthday party for Flea? She's actually pretty cool for a girl, but...well, she's still a *girl*, & Alvin's pretty sure that a tea party could be the single most terrifying thing ever to happen to him.
Similar to the other two Alvin Ho stories; lightw
Rebecca McPhedran
Another great Alvin Ho adventure. This one spins around being invited to birthday parties. He is invited to a girl party and (surprise, surprise) is scared to death. He really wants to be invited to a boy's party, and (bummer) wasn't invited to the party he wanted. Some of the highlights of the story include trying to set a world record, trying to turn invisible, and there is a strait-jacket in there somewhere! A really quick read-he is such a love-able character.
Gwen the Librarian
Feb 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kidlit
I skipped the second Alvin Ho book because I loved the first one so much, I was too nervous to read the second. But then, this year, everyone has loved the third so much, I had to give in and read it. I was laughing out loud the whole time. Something in Alvin resonates so much - in this one, the whole concept of the creepy dead authors and their clones had me in stitches. The Ho parents continue to be well-drawn and endearing - this is my new favorite fictional family.
Sep 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
I know I enjoy these books, but I got the kid's stamp of approval this weekend when I was visiting my 7 year old nephew. He had to do 10 minutes of sustained reading and he was balking at taking the time out of his day. I suggested we all sit and read with him for 10 minutes and I offered my kindle to him and talked up this book. He read for 30 minutes, laughing and reading portions to us out loud.
Jan 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is the third hilarious chapter book in the series about Alvin Ho. It is a boy who’s afraid of everything. For example, what could possibly be so scary about a birthday party? You might be dressed for bowling, but everyone else is dressed for football. But this is a great book for anyone. You don't have to read the other books to follow the series.

Oct 04, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-fiction, humor
While the original Alvin H remains my favorite, I still liked this one.

Two things I could have lived without:
-- the gas-passing bits (but little boys will love those)
-- the clothes-swapping before pictures (I just found that a little unbelievable)

However, I will always love Alvin, Alvin's parents, and especially my favorite, Flea--and Lenore Look for bringing them to life.
Katie Bruce
Sep 07, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: j-fiction, j-series
Probably my least favorite Alvin Ho books thus far. Still charming, but this one just seemed to lack some of scenes dealing with Alvin's interpersonal relationships that make the first two so great. I wanted more of him and Flea! More of Alvin and his dad! Still, it was okay. Fans of the first two will probably enjoy this one as well.
Oct 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
I love Alvin Ho! He is afraid of everything and carries around his PDK (personal disaster kit) that includes everything from band-aids, escape routes, and masks for scaring away girls. Alvin thinks his life will end when he gets invited to a girls birthday party. Alvin can't even talk to girls. I love the part where his dad helps him make a list of things to do when talking to a girl.
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I first began making picture books in kindergarten because my other career option at the time was stealing. But a life of crime requires practice and patience, neither of which I had, so I settled into industry, making what I coveted but what my parents could not afford to buy: beautiful books like the ones my teacher read to us in school.

Publishing was no problem in those days, not like it is no
More about Lenore Look...

Other Books in the Series

Alvin Ho (6 books)
  • Allergic to Girls, School, and Other Scary Things (Alvin Ho, #1)
  • Allergic to Camping, Hiking, and Other Natural Disasters (Alvin Ho, #2)
  • Allergic to Dead Bodies, Funerals, and Other Fatal Circumstances (Alvin Ho, #4)
  • Allergic to Babies, Burglars, and Other Bumps in the Night (Alvin Ho, #5)
  • Allergic to the Great Wall, the Forbidden Palace, and Other Tourist Attractions (Alvin Ho, #6)

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“It's a secret code," said Calvin. "Girls are not not like boys. If a boy wants to kill you, he says 'I'm going to kill you.' If a girl wants to kill you, she says, 'We need to talk.' That's the code."

I gasped. "Has a girl ever wanted to talk to you?" I asked.

"Yup," said Calvin.

"How come you're still alive?" I asked.

"I vomited," said Calvin.”
“You’re not caught in a dilemma?” he asked. I looked at my feet. I didn’t know what a dilemma was, but it didn’t look like I was caught in anything, so I shook my head no.” 0 likes
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