Twerp is formatted as if it is the journal the main character, Julian, is asked to keep. As soon as I started reading, I wanted to know what the bullying incident involved. What happened? We don't find out for a while, but I liked the placement of those details. It gave me an opportunity to get to know Julian through his own words first, rather than letting a horrible mistake make the initial impression.
Julian has a lot of wisdom for a kid his age. He's tenderhearted and thoughtful. He's intelligent - he goes on these little rabbit trails when he writes, and it's fascinating to read along and see how his mind works.
Twerp shows how easily a "good kid" can get involved in something terrible. It is a coming of age story that works through the process of breaking away from peer pressure, learning to think independently, trusting oneself, and listening to the voice that tell us, "this is the right thing to do."
Thanks to the animated and relevant voice of its main character, Twerp is certain to connect with middle grade readers. Geared for ages 9 and up.