Planet Tad

Overview

Tad has an agenda: Survive seventh grade.

He also wants to: grow a mustache, get girls to notice him, and do a kickflip on his skateboard. . . .

But those are not the main reasons he started a blog. Tad just has a lot of important thoughts he wants to share with the world, like: Here is the first thing I have learned about having a dog in your house: Don't feed them nachos. Not ever.

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Planet Tad

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Overview

Tad has an agenda: Survive seventh grade.

He also wants to: grow a mustache, get girls to notice him, and do a kickflip on his skateboard. . . .

But those are not the main reasons he started a blog. Tad just has a lot of important thoughts he wants to share with the world, like: Here is the first thing I have learned about having a dog in your house: Don't feed them nachos. Not ever.

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Editorial Reviews

Jon Stewart
“Hilarious to anyone who ever went through, is currently in, might go to, or flunked out of middle school.”
Stephen Colbert
“This book will make you laugh. If you’re not into that sort of thing, consider yourself warned.”
Tom Angleberger
“Tad is the rapid-fire, pop-culture-referencing, actually-funny stand-up-comic-in-waiting that I wanted to be in middle school!”
Publishers Weekly
Based on a column that Carvell, head writer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, has written for Mad magazine since 2005, this episodic illustrated novel presents a year’s worth of blog entries from Tad, an underachieving, none-too-popular kid in the vein of Wimpy Kid Greg Heffley. Without a narrative arc, the book’s momentum comes from Carvell’s distinctive sense of humor. While Tad’s musings often feel like they’ve been pulled from the mind of a stoner at 2 a.m. rather than that of a 12-year-old boy (“You know what I bet would suck? If you died and went to heaven, but really hated harp music”), the target audience ought to find them hilarious. Amid familiar entries about family trips, a lawn-mowing business scheme, and a secret admirer, Tad watches a lot of TV, which lets Carvell riff on the pop culture pantheon, from Avatar (both the James Cameron and air-bending versions) to The Legend of Zelda. Holgate’s cartoon spot art, not all seen by PW, is a good fit, underscoring the awesomeness of an eight-horned unicorn or the absurdity of Hannah Montana’s “disguise.” Ages 8–12. (May)
Children's Literature - Chelsea S. Couillard-Smith
It is the New Year, and middle schooler Tad has resolved to create a blog. Each short entry begins with the image of a monkey-like face depicting Tad's mood for the day, and ranges in length from a couple of sentences to a short paragraph. The mood described often seems irrelevant, and is frequently difficult to reconcile with whatever pained expression the monkey wears. The blog entries touch on daily events as well as humorous musings about popular culture and middle school social dynamics. Tad's friends and family show up frequently, and occasionally references to his other new year's resolutions (starting to shave, attracting the notice of girls, and improving his skateboarding skills) appear. A few mini-narratives are carried over a number of entries such as Tad's horrifying summer job experience and a visit to his grandmother's house, but overall, the entries are only loosely connected. Other than the framework of a calendar year, there is little narrative arc to Tad's story, and after a year's worth of daily observations and a pat on the back for having made some progress on his resolutions, his blog ends without having accomplished much. The characters are all one-dimensional, appearing only when necessary and then vanishing quickly, and while Tad demonstrates a relatively authentic adolescent point of view, much of his commentary on the world reads more like the one-off jokes of an adult stand-up comic than anything a tween would notice. Without much plot, there is little to engage readers, but fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid will probably enjoy Tad's mishaps, and reluctant readers may find the short vignettes to be a good fit. Reviewer: Chelsea S. Couillard-Smith
School Library Journal
Gr 5–7—When Tad receives his father's old computer as a Christmas gift, he decides to start a blog. In his first post, he announces his New Year resolutions: to get through seventh grade, learn to do a kickflip on his skateboard, have girls notice him, and start to shave. What follows are the trials and tribulations of a year in the life of the Lakeville middle schooler, including a mystery to solve when someone leaves notes signed, "You're Secret Admirer" in his locker. He also has a way of complicating even the simplest situation. Humorous pencil illustrations accompany the riotous narrative. Fans of Jeff Kinney's "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" series (Abrams) will find Tad's blog equally engaging.—Wayne R. Cherry, Jr., First Baptist Academy Library, Houston, TX
Kirkus Reviews
A phoned-in Diary of a Wimpy Kid wannabe from a Mad Magazine and Daily Show writer. Based on a blog of the same name that runs in Mad, the narrative is framed as nearly daily entries over the course of a calendar year by a middle-school Seinfeld. The content is entirely predictable. He skates on or over the edge of embarrassment while trying to be noticed by girls, generally comes out second best in dealings with his gifted little sister and briefly lands a summer job wearing a hot-dog suit. He joins several of his classmates in making a (wait for it) science-project volcano and records many similarly unexceptional experiences and encounters. These entries are thickly padded with a monotonous litany of callow opinions on dozens of cultural markers from various commercial mascots (including Ronald McDonald) to TV shows (Jeopardy, for example) and movies (Jurassic Park, among many others). These share space with complaints about minor annoyances like gum in water-fountain drains and superficially clever ruminations about why "werewolves" aren't called "arewolves," the nature of Santa's reindeer games and like burning topics. Moreover, he decides that his school mascot, movies about volcanoes, work and a mind-numbing catalog of other irritations all "suck." So does this tedious effort to climb aboard the bandwagon. (line drawings, mood icons) (Fiction. 10-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061934384
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/23/2014
  • Pages: 256
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years

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