I have absolutely no idea why it took me so long to read this book! It has been popular with kids at my library right from the start, and then it went on to get tons of attention from librarians and teachers, so I should have just picked it up and seen what all the fuss was about… but I didn’t. Now that there are four books in the series (with a 5th book expected in 2010) AND a movie in the works, it’s kinda hard to keep ignoring it! I just HAD to see why everyone loved this book so much, and it didn’t take long once I picked up a copy and started to read. The story has plenty for kids to relate to — like weird parents, a crazy older brother, and school bullies — and the cartoons were hilarious! Even though the story could have been told in strictly prose format, there is no doubt that the diary style writing and plentiful illustrations help to attract [and hook] a lot of reluctant readers. If you know anyone in 5th-7th grade who haven’t read this book, you should hand them a copy. While I try not to make sweeping generalizations, I can honestly say that I can’t imagine there are more than a handful of Tweens who wouldn’t like it.