Big Nate in a Class by Himself
by Peirce, Lincoln

Supremely confident middle-school student Nate Wright manages to make getting detention from every one of his teachers in the same day seem like an achievement. 100,000 first printing.

Unabashedly capitalizing on the Wimpy Kid wave (with a Jeff Kinney blurb-recommendation splashed across the cover), Peirce's book, for a slightly younger audience, uses a mix of prose and cartoons to tell a quick story about a day in the life of an extroverted, impish kid. Peirce does have comics cred on his side: his hero, Nate, has been the star of a long-running daily comic strip. He is the classic clever kid who hates school and whose antics land him in ever-hotter water with grumbly teachers. On this particular day, he wakes up feeling fine, sweats a bit about an upcoming test, then opens a fortune cookie at school that reads, "Today you will surpass all others." So, he dutifully goes about trying to best other kids at everything but seems to only have a knack for racking up detention slips. The cartoons provide plenty of gags at the expense of various adults and classmates, and Nate's persistent good cheer and moxie make him a likable new proxy for young misfits. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.

Sixth grader Nate Wright doesn't excel in much at P.S.38. He's not as smart as his best friend Francis nor as lamely funny as his other best friend Teddy, and he's certainly not (unfortunately) successful at everything, like his annoying older sister Ellen. So when Teddy slips Nate a fortune cookie and the fortune reads "Today you will surpass all others," Nate is stoked. Just how will he surpass all others? Every time he tries anything-like making grumpy Mr. Gavin laugh or breaking the speed-eating world record by snarfing down a mountain of slimy green beans-he ends up getting detention. This really seems more like a candidate for Worst Day Ever! Peirce skillfully and often hilariously imports his comic-strip character into a full-length story. The many comic strips, some drawn by Nate on lined paper and others featuring him as a character, and copious spot illustrations move the story along to a conclusion some may see coming but all will enjoy. Perfect for fans of Jeff Kinney's Wimpy Kid. Thank goodness sequels are planned. Final art not seen. (Graphic/fiction hybrid. 7-11) Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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