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The Worst Class Trip Ever Hardcover – May 5, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 5–7—On a class trip to Washington, DC, eighth grader Wyatt Palmer and his best friend Matt believe that they have uncovered a terrorist plot. The men seated behind them in the airplane are oddly protective of their luggage and spend their time during the flight studying aerial photos of the White House. During a scuffle with these passengers, Matt removes an odd device from one man's backpack. This event gets Matt and Wyatt into trouble with their teacher, not to mention a stern lecture from the Federal Air Marshal, but they figure it will be worth it if they have foiled a terrorist plot. Unfortunately, Wyatt and Matt have not seen the last of those two men. For the rest of their trip, Wyatt, Matt, and a few more of their classmates (including Wyatt's crush Suzana) avoid bad guys, sneak away from the rest of their class, and conceal the whole situation from their chaperones. If everything goes well, Wyatt can save the country and get the girl—but when has anything on this trip gone well for Wyatt? Barry's trademark humor shines in this tale of a field trip gone hilariously wrong. While Wyatt's adventures occasionally push the boundaries of credulity, his escapades are so funny that readers are likely to be forgiving. VERDICT With its wacky humor and mildly suspenseful scenarios, this appealing book will be a good fit for most libraries.—Misti Tidman, Licking County Library, Newark, OH
A Miami eighth-grader's class trip to the nation's capital quickly escalates into an international incident.Wyatt Palmer wants nothing more than a nice, peaceful, informative class trip to Washington, D.C. But when his best friend, Matt, spots some suspicious activity on their plane, his dream vanishes-in a big way. Soon Matt is kidnapped, possibly by international terrorists, and it's up to Wyatt and the girl of his dreams to find him and exchange a deadly device for their lost friend. That all sounds heavy, but humor columnist Barry sprinkles enough laughs throughout to keep things moving smoothly. The novel's ludicrous scenario is met with an equally comic tone, making for a fast-paced, easy read. The author sup! plies these kids with enough smarts to get out of jams but enough vulnerabilities to keep readers engaged. At no point will readers be worried about the fate of the world, but whether or not Wyatt and his pals make it out in one piece is another matter. The book's shortcomings are few: the adult characters are as flat as the children are round, some of the slapstick goes a bit too far, and the final pages are overstuffed with expository "this is how everybody ended up" chunks of text. A light, comic tone and more-or-less believable stakes make for a winning combination. (Thriller. 8-12) Kirkus"
On a trip to Washington, D.C., four eight-graders get tangled up in a plot to bomb the White House . . . or maybe not. One thing nerdy Wyatt does know: the two men from "Gadakistan" who sat behind him on the plane with stop at nothing-including kidnapping-to get back the mysterious electronic device Wyatt's impulsive buddy Matt snatched from them. OK, one other thing-how lucky is he that dazzling classmate steps away from the "Hot Girl Clot" to provide the brains, bankroll, and even the brawn for what becomes a frantic round of chases, attacks, rescues, narrow escapes, and desperate ploys? Laced with Barry's trademark zingers (pandas are "like the Kardashians of zoo animals" because they "never actually do anything except eat and poop"), the escapade culminates in a climactic melee featuring a snake, a fork, a really big kite, the president of the United States, and video footage that boosts Wyatt's Twitter account from 2 followers to 4.7 million. Readers can only hope their own class trips turn this exhilarating. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Barry (along with Ridley Pearson) has built cred with kids thanks to the Peter and the Starcatchers series. Adults know him, too, so expect demand thanks to name recognition and plenty of buzz. John Peters Booklist"
Check your disbelief at the TSA line for this hilarious jaunt from Miami to Washington, D.C., with the civics students of Culver Middle School. Trouble starts on the airplane, where Wyatt Palmer and friend Matt Diaz notice that some nearby passengers have aerial photos of the White House and a backpack they are reluctant to stow under the seat in front of them. When an electronic device falls out of the bag, Matt pockets it, setting off a chain of events that leads to two kidnappings and an international incident in the Rose Garden involving the President, a foreign dignitary, a dragon kite, an angry cab driver, and more. (Suggested alternate title: The Worst School Chaperones Ever.) The boys are aided by the apple of Wyatt's eye, Suzana Delgado, who they are surprised to learn is not only an excellent soccer player but "basically a Navy SEAL disguised as a hot eighth-grade girl." Pulitzer-winner Barry has the comic sensibility of a middle-school class clown. Expect to have lots of trouble keeping this one on the shelf. Ages 8 12. Agent: Amy Berkower, Writers House PW"
Top customer reviews
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The publisher's review doesn't mention it, but the best part is that the girl is the main hero. As POV character Wyatt observes, "... there are some things you just can't do, and one of them is tell Suzana Degado, who you are discovering is basically a Navy SEAL disguised as a hot eighth-grade girl, that you're afraid to go with her to rescue your friend."
Be a sport and buy a copy for your local middle school library!
I recommend "The Worst Class Trip Ever" for middle schoolers because the book actually seems like it was written by a middle schooler and not an adult who was trying to sound like a middle schooler. Dave Barry does this by using middle school humor and using short simple sentences. Such as, “My phone burped.” and “He is one of those kids that can fart whenever he wants to.” The story is easy to follow, but still is complex. To make the book complex I feel Mr. Barry made some parts strange just for the sake of being strange. Such as when the strange men on the plane came in the hotel in costumes. Or the alligator incident at the beginning of the book. Overall, "The Worst Class Trip Ever" is a really good book and I think you should read it.
My fifth grader loved it and had a hard time putting it down each evening. He does not like to read, so this book was extra special.