Books in the Middle: Reading for Middle School

Our focus is on books middle school students might like to read and topics pertaining to books for these students, and we are giving recommendations. Teachers, librarians and middle school students are the contributors to this blog. Enjoy!

Class Clown, or Class Savior? May 10, 2013

imgresAlways in trouble and loving it! That is how Donovan views his world in middle school. He sees something and does it without any thought to the future or the possible consequences of his actions. Such is the case one afternoon in detention for participating in a spitball war. Of course, Donovan was the only one caught, so he’s serving time alone. After being lured out of a window by his friends, he looks at a statue of Atlas holding up the world (a very old statue in front of the school) and thinks to take a whack at it with a stick. Gee, what could possibly happen, right?

Well, the “world” rolls off of Atlas and down the hill, in the process breaking the wall of the gym, destroying the gym floor and almost running some people over. The superintendent of the schools looks out and catches Donovan red handed and guilty. But that is when things get pretty funny and turned upside down in Ungifted by Gordon Korman because instead of being punished, by a fluke, Donovan finds himself going to the gifted school in his district and thinking he might be able to hide out for a while. But the question is how long can a really average kid hide among a group of geniuses and what happens when it all falls apart?

As with most of Korman’s books, humor is front and center. Donovan is a likable kid who, frankly just doesn’t think. He wrangles his very pregnant sister into the class of genius kids, turns their robotic team inside out and introduces one to youtube with hilarious results. I literally laughed out loud at parts.


Recommended for grades 6th and up.

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