From School Library Journal
Gr 4-7-Many teens go through awkward physical changes in adolescence, but 12-year-old Charlie's changes are extreme: during science class he transforms into an eight-foot-tall mutant dinosaur. His family isn't surprised, though. Unbeknownst to Charlie, his grandmother was one, too. His oversize status has its pros and cons. His two best friends, Sam and Lucille, remain loyal. The Banditos, the cool kids' clique, suddenly want him in. The downside: bully and Bandito member Craig will do anything to keep him out, and Charlie's athletic older brother resents not being the star of the family. But now that Charlie doesn't look human, he's forced to contemplate how he feels as a human-and realizes he's spent too much time worrying about what other people think of him. When offered a chance to join the Banditos by betraying Sam and Lucille, he wavers, and then stands up for himself in an emotionally satisfying conclusion. Readers will relate to his evolution from insecure nerd to confident dino, aided by solid supporting characters in Charlie's parents and a caring science teacher. Balaban has a keen eye for both middle-school angst and the quiet moments that define Charlie's loving family. Rash's bold, full-page illustrations are spare but provide additional laughs. A funny, contemporary allegory about learning to like yourself, scales and all.-M. Kozikowski, Sachem Public Library, Holbrook, NYα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
“Bob Balaban does it all (really he does). He directs, acts and writes funny (really he does). In my opinion, this book is a monsterpiece."
"Bob Balaban knows this world so well, you might think this actually happened to him. Read it and you'll see!"
“A very funny and insightful exploration of what it means to be the REAL you.”
"With occasional comic drawings and lots of humor regarding life as a dinosaur among humans (such as the scale of reptile farts), this romp is a balm for anyone who’s ever felt awkward in their own scales err, skin. . . . A wacky story of loyalty and self-discovery."
"An endearingly quirky story about embracing oneself."
"The amiable drollery of The Creature From the Seventh Grade carries it a long way."
(The New York Times)
"A funny, contemporary allegory about learning to like yourself, scales and all."
(School Library Journal)
"Balaban (better known as a longtime stage and screen actor) excels in creating a voice that's absolutely spot-on for a tween boy."
(Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books)