Reading Level: Ages 8-12
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
Willie Plummet is an eighth-grader who seems to go from one zany scheme to another, and crazy disasters always follow.
In this particular book, he has been accidentally nominated by an absent-minded teacher to win a service award so that his junior high school will receive grant money for computers. Therefore, he embarks on a series of catastrophic volunteer activities. At the same time, he is caught up in a conflict when the parents of his best friend Felix Patterson leave town on a long business trip and Felix moves in with Willie. The two boys intend to have some serious fun, but they quickly learn that living in the same house is not as wonderful as it seemed. Only when danger arises do Willie and Felix learn to work together and recognize the importance of friendship.
I have seen the “Misadventures of Willie Plummet” books advertised in catalogs for years but had never read one until now. They are written in a somewhat breezy, madcap style that is undoubtedly intended to appeal to middle school aged readers.
There are twenty Willie Plummet books in each of which in the ever-resourceful Willie tries to figure his way out of some new disaster with amazing inventions and hilarious results, but he always finds that God always has the best answers to all his problems. Personally, I found Willie, along with many of his attitudes, and some of his actions quite annoying, but the whole purpose of the series appears to be that he learns from his mistakes, which are very likely common among junior high students (and many adults too). While I am not sure that I could stand reading twenty of them, I would recommend the books to pre-teens who like to read funny stories.
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