I didn’t quite know what to think of “Twerp” at first. It certainly caught my attention with the way it was written in 1st person narrative, but I kept waiting for the story to start. It wasn’t until I was halfway through the book that I realized that this was the story; Julian writing to his teacher telling him his stories about life as a 6th grader inching closer and closer to what had happened that day with Danley Dimple. Yet when I finished the book, I did so with satisfaction, it was a good story, I am sure many 5th grade boys could relate to a lot of the things happening in it and I liked that I had spent the time reading it.
Bottomline: Easy story to read and relate to, like a warm hug, and very appropriate for 5th grade and up.
Julian Twerski isn’t a bully. He’s just made a big mistake. So when he returns to school after a weeklong suspension, his English teacher offers him a deal: if he keeps a journal and writes about the terrible incident that got him and his friends suspended, he can get out of writing a report on Shakespeare. Julian jumps at the chance. And so begins his account of life in sixth grade–blowing up homemade fireworks, writing a love letter for his best friend (with disastrous results), and worrying whether he’s still the fastest kid in school. Lurking in the background, though, is the one story he can’t bring himself to tell, the one story his teacher most wants to hear.