Monday, August 13, 2012

MMGM: Judy Moody and the Bad Luck Charm

It's been awhile since I've blogged. We are finally in our home after a 2+ year journey of ups and downs (and lefts and rights). Praise God that we are finally settling down roots. :)

Title: Judy Moody and the Bad Luck Charm
Author: Megan McDonald
Publisher: Candlewick (August 14, 2012)

Source: Received from publisher via NetGalley
Summary from Goodreads:
Will Judy’s lucky penny lead her to the nation’s capital — or to third-grade C-A-L-A-M-I-T-Y? And what do her spelling-bee nemesis and a potbellied pig have to do with it?

The lucky penny in Judy Moody’s pocket sure does seem to be working. She can’t stop winning — at bowling, spelling, the unbeatable Prize Claw, everything! For sure and absolute positive, she’ll ride that wave of good fortune all the way to Washington, D.C. Watch out, District of Cool, here comes Judy Moody, the luckiest kid ever, until . . . oh, no! Her lucky penny just did a belly flop into a porcelain bowl of yucky, blucky UNluck. Has the coin’s magic gone kerflooey?Are some people, like Jessica Finch or Stink, destined to have all the luck, while she, Judy Moody, gets stuck with a yard full of three-not-four leaf clovers, a squealing potbellied pig in an elevator, and a squashed penny with cooties? ROAR!
Sometimes I get a little embarrassed by my love for middle grade fiction because it often leads me to wander through the kids section. Most of the time, I spend most of my time in the kids section of a bookstore because I love middle grade books. People have asked me why I like reading "kid books" and usually my response is because I love being able to share them with my students. I used to think that there was no restriction on how far down the grades I could go and still enjoy the books. God knows I love picture books. However, since Judy Moody is written more for the younger readers, I think it might be past that mysterious "point" where it's not as interesting for me as an adult.

What I love about the Judy Moody series are the beautiful illustrations. She is a grown-up Junie B. Jones for a lot of my students and has entertained many girl (and boy!) readers in my classes throughout the years.

This eleventh installation of Judy Moody finds her trying to ride out the luck on her good luck charm for as long as possible. This brings her to Washington D.C. and I enjoyed the descriptions of the city for readers that might not have visited there before. Judy is a girl that always stands up for what she believes in and I love her tenacity.

Overall it was an enjoyable story, but I think I'll stick to my higher-level middle grade fiction in the future.

3 out of 5 stars

About the Author: Megan McDonald
P1030350.jpgI had the pleasure of meeting Megan McDonald at the 2001 LA Times Festival of Books. Read more about that experience here.

Pretending to be a pencil sharpener was Megan McDonald’s first experience as a writer. She was 10 years old when she wrote the story for her school newspaper. “Anything can become an idea for a story,” says McDonald. “Even a pencil sharpener!” Megan has since written and published over 60 books for children in 22 languages, including the hilarious Judy Moody adventures, which are largely inspired by her childhood memories of growing up with four older sisters.
     Megan says, “I am lucky to be a writer, because I get to live in my imagination. (And I get to go to work in my pajamas!) I spend my days thinking like a hermit crab or a little blue penguin or a girl who loves bugs. Or pretending I’m a bossy big sister with a little brother named Stink. Or traveling back in history as a young girl who journeys across the Santa Fe Trail in 1848. Or solving a mystery in 17th century Jamestown. I spend my days looking at things upside down, inside-out, sideways, wondering, imagining, questioning everything, always wanting to see the inside.

Author's website:

If you would like to find out more about Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday, you can check out Shannon Messenger's blog here.


  1. I have not read any of the Judy Moody books...surprising since I love middle grade books as much as you do.

    I, too, find myself wandering the middle grade section of book stores and libraries. And when friends talk about the latest adult book they've read, usually I haven't even heard of it. :-)

    1. Thanks for leaving a comment, Barbara! I was surprised that I haven't read any either even though I have several in my classroom library.

  2. I love MG books and read tons of them. I haven't read any for the lower grades in a while. I have seen Judy Moody- but I haven't read any of them. The illustrations do look cute. Thanks for sharing. :)

    1. Hi Jess! Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment! I love the illustrations too. :)


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