Greg Heffley is back. It's the beginning of a new school year and his mom gave him a new
Rodrick, Greg's older brother, continues to be a real jerk to his brother. Manny, the "baby" (who is three), continues to be a spoiled brat who tattles on Greg all the time. Greg continues to do stupid things to get himself into trouble. For example, he dumps the cheese finger on the new kid and thinks it is funny to pretend that a returning friend who had moved away, is actually invisible. He gets the whole school in on it and gets into serious trouble. In fact, he seems to be in trouble at a higher level across the board in this installment.
He also learns some lessons along the way, such as the importance of honesty and of actually working on your homework and projects on time. Don't listen to what your older brother tells you, because he is going to get you into trouble. Think twice before picking on your younger brother. Don't try to scam your mom. It may take her a while, but she *will* figure it out!
I didn't like this second installment as much as I liked the first one. Yet, the characters actually remain true-to-life. I know families like this and kids like these, many of whom have tried some of these shenanigans. You may actually laugh out loud at a few of the jokes and situations; the rest of the time, you may be sighing and shaking your head. The best part about this book, just like the first one, is that it is actually inspiring kids to read. Reluctant readers like that it is broken up in familiar verbiage with lots of pictures yet still feels like a thick chapter book. It has spawned a slew of similarly designed books, more of which will be reviewed right here.
There is also a movie version of this book, that is the sequel to the first movie. I haven't yet seen it, but plan to later this summer, if it is still available On Demand.