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119 of 131 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fudge foibles
Judy Blume has often shocked the delicate sensibilities of stuffy parents worldwide with her straightforward tell-it-like-it-is young adult books containing sexual situations. When I was a kid though, Judy Blume meant only one thing. "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing". One of my favorite books, written incredibly well, it captured perfectly what it means to be a kid...
Published on November 9, 2004 by E. R. Bird

versus
27 of 38 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Parent's Review
Given Judy Blume's long-standing controversial reputation for writing children's books that have had some parents in an uproar, I was concerned that this book contains something I would not want my child to read. The good news is that there is little overt content in Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing that is of a very controversial nature for this age level (around age 9...
Published on February 20, 2006 by Lucille


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119 of 131 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fudge foibles, November 9, 2004
Judy Blume has often shocked the delicate sensibilities of stuffy parents worldwide with her straightforward tell-it-like-it-is young adult books containing sexual situations. When I was a kid though, Judy Blume meant only one thing. "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing". One of my favorite books, written incredibly well, it captured perfectly what it means to be a kid with a little sibling. This book was a revelation. Nowhere else had I encountered an early reader story that wasn't afraid to say that little sibs can be annoying brats. There are roughly five bazillion books out there written specifically to coax older children into befriending their younger siblings. Far fewer are the books that recognize the difficulties these elder kids have to deal with when they're forced to abandon their personal privacy and sanity for the sake of a little brother or sister. The one book that really spoke to me about this (and was really funny as well) was Judy Blume's 1972 creation. And it reads as perfectly today as it did some thirty odd years ago.

There was Peter. And then there was Fudge. Peter Hatcher is nine years old and has the awful job of dealing with almost-three-year-old Fudgie at all times. Fudge is what a polite person might call a lively child. To Peter, however, Fudge is a holy terror. If he's not sticking green food stamps to full suitcases or refusing to eat until Peter stands on his head, he's leaping from large rocks (to fly) and throwing tantrums in shoe stores. Peter is understandably jealous of the amount of attention Fudge attracts but at least he has his pet turtle Dribble to comfort him. Each chapter in this book is a small story about the daily interactions and adventures of the Hatcher boys. The final tale (the most important day of Peter's life, according to him) is probably one of the most memorable episodes in children's literature to date.

What Blume does right with this book is put everything entirely within the first person perspective of Peter himself. His tone of voice is pitch perfect. You empathize with him completely. When Fudge goes into his older brother's room and destroys his poster for school, you're just as inclined to see him punished as Peter is. And when Peter must deal with an awful loss at the book's end, you know just how he feels. Somehow, Blume has taken that prickly mind of the fourth grade boy, and made it completely understandable to the rest of the world. This is no small feat.

There are some small dated elements to the book. Mrs. Hatcher is, suffice to say, your stereotypical frantic mama. You begin to wish that she would grow a backbone once in a while instead of sobbing "my baby" whenever Fudge misbehaves in a dangerous way. As for Fudge, he's great in that he's awful. The worst possible three-year-old to be trapped in a family with. If there's a way to screw something up, he'll manage it. The age difference between a nine-year-old and a three-year-old is immense. Blume bridges that gap adeptly.

I state here and now, as loudly as my little lungs can carry sound (or my little fingers can type a review) that this is one of the best children's books in American literature. It has everything you could possibly want. Humor, adventure, a hero with many troubles, and a happy ending. For kids that have a Fudge of their own, Peter's problems will speak to them instantly. For kids that ARE Fudge, the book will strike them as an amusing romp through a world that is both familiar and unfamiliar. A must read for any kid you know.
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34 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best ever, February 7, 1998
By A Customer
I read this book when I was in fourth or fifth grade. Now I'm 26, but I still remember this little gem well. Peter Warren Hatcher has many problems, but his biggest one is his little brother, whom everyone calls "Fudge" Everyone likes Fudge, because he's the cute one, but when Fudge becomes a little monster, everyone looks to Peter to solve the problems.
Mr. and Mrs. Juicy-O meet Fudge and love him, but when he shoves Peter's turtle in their faces, Peter's dad loses the account. Mr. Toddle-Bike thinks Fudge is just right for a commercial, but Fudge won't ride the bike until Peter does. When Fudge eats Peter's turtle, Dribble, Fudge gets all the attention, and Peter just loses his pet. In every "Tale" Peter plays the role of the good son.
Judy Blume knows her audience well. People this age have to deal with the fact that they are no longer cute, but they are still treated like they know nothing by most adults. I could identify with Peter when I was 10, and I can relate to him still now.
Parents, buy this book for your kids. Kids, read this book. It's funny, touching, and will stay in your head for the rest of your lives.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read-aloud book!, December 29, 2010
By 
This review is from: Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing (Paperback)
"It burns me up the way people treat Fudge. He's not so special. He's just little, that's all!
But some day he's going to be nine years old too. I can't wait until he is.
Then he'll know there's nothing so great about him after all."

Peter Hatcher is a 9-years-old fourth grader who has a younger brother (almost three) Farley Drexel Hatcher, or Fudge. To an outsider, Fudge could seem like a very lively child. To Peter, he is a walking terror. On any given day, Fudge is either throws a temper tantrum or meddles with Peter's stuff. And the worst part is - he always gets away with everything. Peter feels as if no one cares about him, and that he is just a fourth grade nothing. But at least Peter has Dribble, his pet turtle, to comfort him ... until one day even that changes!

Each chapter in this book is a small story about the daily interactions and adventures of the Hatcher boys, written as it's seen through the eyes of Peter. His voice is very believable, you know just how he feels, and you empathize with him completely.

There are many books out there that try sweet-talk older children to befriend their younger siblings. "Tales of Fourth Grade Nothing" by Judy Blume, on the other side, is a very honest account of all the difficulties an older child might be going through. But neither does it show Fudge as "all bad" - he is fussy, but most of the time he is just looking up to his older brother, trying to be "like Pee-tah".

This book is a true little gem - it's still popular with kids nowadays, just as it was in 1972 when it was first published. Great read-aloud book!

Julia Shpak
Author of "Power of Plentiful Wisdom". Available on Amazon.
For more reviews on children's books visit my blog "Julia's Library" at: ForwardQuoteDOTcom
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is incredibly funny, so I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!!!!!, July 17, 1996
By A Customer
Tales Of A Fourth Grade Nothing is about nine year old Peter Hatcher, and his little brother Farley Drexel, otherwise known as Fudge. Peter's pet turtle, Dribble has been walked off with. Fudge. He had taken Drbble, and done a very interesting thing with him. To find out, read the book! I thought it was so good I did a book report on it!!!!!!!! Read it
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, April 7, 1998
By A Customer
The Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing is about a boy who has some hectic times with his brother. The setting was like any old ordinary town. The main character was Peter, an ordinary fourth grader. I really like Peter's brother Fudge. My favorite part is when Fudge eats a turtle. It's really funny. The thing that I think Peter learned was patience. I liked Peter the main character because he is an ordinary fourth grader like me. I would recommed this book to a friend to explain why your litte brother or sister do the things theydo.If you like this book you may also enjoy some other books by Judy Blume such as Fudge-A-Maina.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is book is about a fourth grader who got into truble, May 20, 1999
By A Customer
I think this is a good book if your a big brother. The main characters in the book are Fudge and Peter. Fudge is an annoying little brother. Peter is a big brother and he is the kid that is annoyed by Fudge. Peter is a caring boy, that helps anybody but Fudge. He also enjoys being with his friend Jimmy Fargo.
This book is about growing up. The setting in this book is your average neighborhood. In that neighborhood the Farley's live in an apartment building. This story takes place in the 1980's.
I think this book is a good book because it is very interesting. It also was very descriptive and entertaining. The characters were well discribed. That is why I recommend you read this book.
If you enjoy this book you might want to read the series. The rest of the books in the series are"SuperFudge, "Fudge-O_Mainia", and "Sheila the Brave". Out of all the book s I think this is the best book. The next best is "SuperFudge", Then "Fudge-O-Mainia". The one I did not like the most is "Shelia the Brave".
What I didn't like about this book is that it had long chapters. I don't like long chapters because I read for 30 minutes every night and I like to stop at the end of chapters. So if the chapters are too long than I won't be able to read chapter to chapter each night. That is my opinion on the book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic, April 14, 2004
By A Customer
This was the first book that I can remember ever reading, way back in elementary school. I don't think it's lost any of its charm.
Anyone who has a sibling can relate to this book. It is funny, and especially witty for a children's book, and it helped to fuel my love for reading. I've read other books by Blume (Superfudge, Then Again Maybe I Won't) and I like them all.
One note: Please disregard the following review: This book did not age well, from January 20, 2004.
It was written by a PC Police Officer from Indiana and its ignorance is unjustified. The book is a light-hearted look at a small family in the city. It seems that everything these days, no matter how old it is, is judged by its Political Correctness. I'm tired of fools like her trying to water down everything to the lowest common denominator so that nobody's "feelings" are hurt. It's a story about brothers' misadventures together for crying out loud.
Bottom line: This book has lots of well-deserved 5-star reviews. If you have small kids and want to turn them on to reading, this would be a pretty good place to start. But hurry, it may be a matter of time before its "unnacceptable violence" gets it banned by the PC Police.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tales of the fourth Grade Nothing, June 17, 2005
A Kid's Review
Who knows what will happen when Fudge is around. Tales of the Fourth Grade nothing is an incredible book for all ages. Fudge is a wild kid who just loves to wreak havoc. He totures his brother Peter, and is always in his room.But what will happen when Fudge crosses the line?

Peter is in the fourth grade and went to a birthday party, and there he won a turtle and names him Dribble. he goes hame and leaves Dribble in his room every day when he goes to school and every time he goes home he finds Fudge in there with Dribble. Not even a lock will stop Fude. One day Peter comes home and sees his door unlocked with a chair against his door (the lock was a chain lock and was outside of the door, just high enogh for Peter to reach not Fudge)and when he opens his door he finds no Fudge, and NO DRIBBLE! What did Fudge do to dribble? Did he hide him? Did he let him lose? For all Peter knows he could of throne him out the window. Read this awesome book to find out where Dribble went and what did Fudge do to him.

-Gregory
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tales of the fourth Grade Nothing, June 17, 2005
A Kid's Review
Who knows what will happen when Fudge is around. Tales of the Fourth Grade nothing is an incredible book for all ages. Fudge is a wild kid who just loves to wreak havoc. He totures his brother Peter, and is always in his room.But what will happen when Fudge crosses the line?

Peter is in the fourth grade and went to a birthday party, and there he won a turtle and names him Dribble. he goes hame and leaves Dribble in his room every day when he goes to school and every time he goes home he finds Fudge in there with Dribble. Not even a lock will stop Fude. One day Peter comes home and sees his door unlocked with a chair against his door (the lock was a chain lock and was outside of the door, just high enogh for Peter to reach not Fudge)and when he opens his door he finds no Fudge, and NO DRIBBLE! What did Fudge do to dribble? Did he hide him? Did he let him lose? For all Peter knows he could of throne him out the window. Read this awesome book to find out where Dribble went and what did Fudge do to him.

-Gregory
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fourth Grade Nothing's Opinion, April 9, 2001
I admit, it's been more than twenty years since I read this book. But to this day, I give it (and Judy Blume) the lion's share of credit for my interest in reading and my subsequent career in writing. "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing" spoke to me as a child, embedded itself in my psyche and prepared me for a future full of simply wonderful books. "Tales..." was the first of many, and for that I am ever grateful!
When I read this, all those years ago, I remember clearly that I felt a strong kinship to the main character. Today, I remember snatches of scenes and bits of dialogue, which proves that this book profoundly effected me!
Thank you, Judy Blume, for your wonderful work. "Tales..." and "Superfudge" were two of the absolute best books I ever read while growing up, and they led to many, many years of joy.
I highly recommend this book for children, and it wouldn't hurt if adults read it too. I think I'll re-read it now!
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Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Roy Doty (Paperback - April 5, 2007)
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