I wanted to read this book as soon as I heard the title. What a great title! J.A. Buckle created a teen many young male readers will relate to. He wants a girlfriend, is always strapped for cash and wants to be a rock star. So many families are struggling to make ends meet so many teens can relate to Josh’s situation. Josh copes by keeping a journal, somewhat like Greg Heffley from Wimpy Kid. This book has the same humorous take on life and kept me laughing. I found it interesting that there is a boy character, Josh’s friend Davey, who struggles with body image. Body image and low self esteem isn’t just for girls. It is nice to see this played out with a teenage boy in a YA novel. He also learns his mother has secrets of her own which have a huge impact on his life later in the book. I would hand this to a reluctant teenage boy reader.
Some ideas for discussing with teens:
Have you every kept a journal? Did it help you?
What would you put on a bucket list? Would it be anything like Josh’s?
Discuss metal bands that are mentioned in this book such as Metallica and Children of Bodom.
Do you play an instrument? Why did you choose that one? What song would you like to master?
Discuss what Davey is going through with body images.
Why do you think Josh got the girl in the end?