Wednesday, July 21, 2010


SLEEPING FRESHMEN NEVER LIE by David Lubar is another book that, although it has been on my classroom shelf for years, I've never taken the time to read it.  Well, I finally took the time, and now I'm highly recommending it.

Lubar has humorously included all the dread and tension associated with starting high school.  Main character, Scott, is not looking forward to bus rides, gym class, and the assorted encounters with upperclassmen he has grown up hearing about from previous high school newbies.  He learns quickly to never fall asleep on the morning bus ride to school and to take cover behind any more awkward, taller, or simply any other freshman available.  Avoiding attacks and letting some other poor sap feel the pain, makes surviving the first fateful year of high school easier.

To complicate matters Scott is a bit of a nerd.  His major form of recreation is reading which would make him a target for taunting even if he wasn't a freshman.  He isn't able to benefit much from sibling advice since his older brother never got it together enough to graduate.  Bobby may have been popular with the ladies, but as far as useful advice about dealing with teachers, stacks of homework, and bullies, he is a waste.

The other factor creating a challenge this year is the fact that Scott's mother has announced that she is pregnant.  Scott would have thought two sons was plenty for any parent, but judging by the excitement exhibited by his parents, this new addition to the family is cause for celebration.

As Scott journeys through the perils of his freshman year, he exercises his writing talents in a diary to his yet unborn sibling.  In it he gives advice for living in this crazy world that is both hilarious and poignant.  He occasionally seeks help from family and friends, but often relies on the diary and sharing his thoughts with his future kid brother/sister as a way to relieve the stress and confusion of the most difficult year of his life to date.

Author David Lubar's great talent for entertainment is evident in SLEEPING FRESHMEN NEVER LIE from the very first chapter.  Scott's experiences are perfect examples of the horrors many face as freshmen making this a book that has a little something for everyone.  An added feature I appreciated was Lubar's constant references to well-known kid and young adult literature.  Making Scott an avid reader and writer added a quirky, yet inspiring aspect to his story.  I'm glad I randomly grabbed this one off the shelf.


Anonymous said...

Just read it this weekend and loved it. I am wondering if it would be appropriate for my advanced 7th grade readers next spring?

Readingjunky said...

I've had both 7th and 8th graders reading it. They love it. Advanced 7th graders in the spring should be able to handle it.


Unknown said...

As a nerdy type bookworm who usually reads classics and AWESOME books... this book is really uneventful and I really need to think about guys and their simplistic minds now...