BOOK REVIEW: The Wednesday Wars

ImageTHE WEDNESDAY WARS by Gary D. Schmidt

Read from March 29 to 30, 2013

Rating: 5/5 stars

It has been a while since I last acknowledged someone as my favorite author. After reading this book, I think I just fell in love with the way Gary D. Schmidt writes. And I’m asking myself “why did you read this just lately?“.

The Wednesday Wars was first published in 2007, was given the Newberry Honor Medal in 2008 and was also nominated for the Rebecca Caudill Young Reader’s Book Award. In this compelling young adult historical fiction, the protagonist, Holling Hoodhood has just entered 7th Grade in Camillo Junior High in Long Island, New Jersey in the year 1967. During Wednesdays, all his classmates had to proceed to their respective religion instruction places while he’s left with his teacher, Mrs. Baker. If there’s one thing Holling was sure of, it’s that Mrs. Baker doesn’t like him. He told everyone in his house about his ‘problem’ but unfortunately found no one to be his ally. His mom thinks that he’s just over-thinking things; while his dad told him to be in his best behavior because Mrs Baker could be the next prospect client for their company. The last person would be his sister, who he thinks is not a very good choice at the moment. According to him, asking your sister to be your ally is like asking North Caroline to go to battle with you.

Then there goes his quest the whole school year.  All the mishaps he’s gotten into together with his friends were recounted in this wonderfully written work. This is one of those books that can make you laugh out loud because of how witty the author wrote the entirety of it. At the same time, the book was so inspiring on its own. Mr Schmidt didn’t have to exaggerate things just to sound funny; it all comes  naturally. The characters were very likable. They’re the types of fictional people who are absolutely amusing in their own ways. Mrs Baker, Holling’s teacher reminds me of Mr Keating in The Dead Poets Society. I have a weak spot with fictional teachers who are so much of an inspiration to their students. Maybe it’s because I want to be one someday, right after I’m done with being an accountant, I guess.

Who would also forget these things?

  • Mrs Bigio’s brown, light, perfect cream puffs with chalk dust on top
  • Shakespeare and his insults
  • The rats, Sycorax and Caliban
  • Autograph signing with the pied ninny Mickey Mantle
  • Another autograph signing and baseball game with Joe Pepitone and Horace Clark
  • the war in Vietnam
  • Holling’s first ever play as Ariel wearing his bright yellow tights with the feather on his butt
  • Ford Mustang!
  • local hero news
  • Doug’s asshat brother
  • Hoodhood and Associate VS Kowalski Construction
  • Quality of mercy is strained.
  • Pied ninny. Just swell. Toads, beetles, bats.
  • Danny, Meryl, Mai Thi
  • Multiple death threats

I just love, love, love, love, love this book. There’s so much to appreciate and admire from this book and from the ever-witty author who made it possible for us to meet all these awesome characters. I felt heavyhearted when I finished the book.

I recommend this to everyone!! After all, it was worth the Newberry Award!

“A comedy is about character who dare to know that they may choose a happy ending after all. That’s how I know.” – Gary D. Schmidt, The Wednesday Wars