Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to NOT Reading

Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to NOT Reading

Charlie Joe Jackson hates to read books. He was traumatized around the age of six when for his birthday his father gave him the collected works of Mark Twain, Roald Dahl and Matt Christopher. Since then he's had a great deal going with Timmy McGibney. Charlie Joe buys Timmy ice cream sandwiches and Timmy reads Charlie Joe's required reading books. Charlie Joe usually reads the first and last chapters and then lets Timmy fill in the blanks.

With tips from the reluctant reader and occasionally two sentence chapters, Charlie Joe tells the story of how he decides to overcome his obstacles when Timmy goes on strike and won't read any more. This is middle school with gorgeous girls who can bring the student body to its knees with a flip of their hair. This is middle school the land of cliques of jocks, geeks and Chinese kids. This is the story of a young man of "great promise" who is using his God-given talents to ensure that he never ever has to read a book. Hilarious and a great read-alike for the Diary of a Wimpy Kid gang.

218 pages Ages 9-12  

  • 978-1250003379

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My rating of this book doesn't exactly relate what I feel. It's better than 2 stars, but not a BIG 3 for me. I think this book might be much more popular with the intended audience than me. I found much of the storyline to be contrived and inane. Charlie Joe is a likable character though, and I suppose it is possible that boys his age really think and do these things. Charlie Joe is contradictory though, he hates and avoids reading, but got me to read. It was a quick read with just enough illustrations and quickly read chapters to keep his promise plausible.

I work with many reluctant readers, and I haven't ever tried this approach. Maybe this will be a new tool in my bag of tricks and I can engage new readers. I recommend this book and have seen several of my students choose it.
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