Ten-year-old Nathan Rockledge cannot catch a break. After all, life as a fourth-grader can be hazardous – what with science projects to deal with and recess football games to avoid. Everyone, including his best friend Tommy, seems to have bad luck when hanging around Nathan. Throw in an older sister who is a royal pain, a dad who is stuck in the past, and a mom who keeps trying to poison him with her awful cooking, and poor Nathan’s life as a fourth-grader appears to be completely doomed. Armed only with his sketchpad, his imagination, and his wits, Nathan Rockledge navigates the perils of the fourth grade in style, to emerge heroic, as Nate Rocks, proving that even a ten-year-old can accomplish great things.
Reading books for this age group now that I’m a mom is a little weird. In one scene, Nate’s father is recalling an incident involving his own father, a marshmallow, and a microwave. My first thought was, “They wouldn’t have had a microwave back then.” Except that *I* have a ten-year-old, which makes me around same age (if not older than) Nate’s parents. And we had a microwave “back then”. I know I’m getting old when I’m closer to the age of the parents in the story than the kids.
Poor Nate has to deal with his mom’s bad cooking, an annoying older sister, and a tattle-tale classmate, when all he really wants to do is draw. His sister irritated me, and his oblivious parents weren’t much better. But I loved that the whole book wasn’t a constant complaint about his family. It’s not completely horrible in their home, and their Christmas morning traditions sound like a lot of fun. I loved the ending, too, but of course, I won’t tell you more about that.
It was a really good book. I read it four times. (What he doesn’t say is that the afternoon it came in the mail, he and the book immediately disappeared for a couple hours. After he read it, he allowed me to read it, but I had to give it right back.)
Nate Rocks the World is FREE at Amazon Monday, 8/13 and Tuesday, 8/14.
About the book:
Title: Nate Rocks the World
Author: Karen Pokras Toz
Publisher: Grand Daisy Press
Release date: Nov 28, 2011
Where I got the book: Free from the author in exchange for an honest review