________________ CM . . . . Volume XIX Number 4. . . .September 28, 2012


Judy Moody Saves the World! (Judy Moody, #3).

Megan McDonald.
Illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds.
Somerville, MA: Candlewick Press (Distributed in Canada by Random House of Canada), 2010.
144 pp., pbk., $7.00.
ISBN 978-0-7636-4859-6.

Note: Judy Moody Star-Studded Collection.
ISBN 978-0-7636-4714-8.
Contains Volumes 1-3. $21.00.
Judy Moody Uber-Awesome Collection.
ISBN 978-0-7636-5411-5.
Contains Volumes 1-9. $54.00.

Grades 1-4 / Ages 6-0.

Review by Todd Kyle.




On the way home, Judy gulped in fresh air.

"You look like a goldfish in a toilet," Stink said.

It was no use. Fresh air was not helping.

Fresh air just made her look like a toilet fish. Stink's Crazy Strip was already in the mail. What if Stink won the contest? What if she could never even come up with an idea?

She, Judy Moody, was in a mood.


In Judy Moody Saves the World!, the third book in the Judy Moody series, Judy pursues her dream of saving the environment. Her "Heal the World" motif for a bandage-design contest loses to her brother Stink, her efforts to get rid of everything produced in the rainforest (like pencils and a rubber toilet plunger) are rejected by her family and classmates, and setting Stink's pet toad free into the wild gets her grounded. Even her plan to climb a tree and stay there until the trees are saved is foiled. But with a little help from her arch-rival, Jessica Finch, Judy hatches a plan to collect recyclables and use the cash refund to plant trees in Costa Rica, and her world is saved.

      As usual, Megan McDonald hits the exact rhythm of a spunky eight-year-old's mind. Judy's sense of overt self-importance is matched only by her ability to flit from one failed mission to the next, to go from the depths of despair to the heights of excitement in one breath. The environmental theme is pursued without subtlety, yet without seeming contrived. The real theme, of course, is reflecting single-minded middle-grade obsessions right back to her readers.

      The only inconsistency here is having Judy use the word Band-Aid interchangeably with the fictional product Crazy Strips. Although Band-Aid is accepted as a generic term, if the goal is to avoid the use of real product names, bandage might have been better to describe what the product is.

Highly Recommended.

Todd Kyle is the CEO of the Newmarket Public Library in Ontario.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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