September 15, 2011

For "C" students everywhere

by Kate Jaimet

Josh’s mother wants him to run for class president. Magnolia’s mother wants her to be the lead in the school play. And Wang’s father makes him play chess. Out of desperation, Josh creates a new club - Dunces Anonymous - for kids who aren’t as good at stuff as their parents think they should be. Their mission: to ensure Josh’s defeat in the presidential campaign, to help Magnolia not be Juliet, and to get Wang out of chess. 

Together, the Dunces hatch a few cunning plans that predictably, don’t work out exactly as intended.  Their problems include Magnolia’s deluded mother, the egotistical actor Emmett Blackwell, a nervous chess player named Wilmot Binkle, and Wilmot's angry, contentious father. Plus, there’s Stacey Hogarth, who thinks the club is called “Young Leaders of the Future”, and demands to be included. After many wacky and hilarious complications, everything eventually works out. They even manage to make some real changes in their lives.

Kids who suffer from well-meaning, but overly ambitious parents will enjoy this book and it's laugh-out-loud ending.

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