Read + Review: I Funny TV: A Middle School Story by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein

ifunnytvThe main character is Jamie Grimm, a kid comedian in a wheelchair. Having won a contest, Jamie is asked to sign a contract to appear in his own television show and to receive one million dollars. Only things won’t be that easy for Jamie. He has to deal with a difficult director who considers replacing him. His friends feel neglected as he navigates being a television celebrity. To make matters worse, there is a new bully bothering Jamie. Will Jamie make a success of his new television show? Will fame change him?

The book’s focal point is definitely its humor. I laughed out loud many times as I read the book. I found the characters relatable and well-developed. Ironically, the backbone of this book, its humor, is also sometimes its biggest weakness. In certain dramatic sections of the book, the author includes a joke that felt out of place and ruined the moment. Without spoiling anything, I hope they don’t do a sequel to this book. The ending felt conclusive and another book would be unnecessary.

One memorable thing about the book is the behind the scenes glimpse at how making a television show works. The reader gets to see how a director can be critical to the success or failure of a program. Jamie had a bad director who wouldn’t allow the actors to improvise and who would edit details of Jamie’s life to make it funnier, but much less authentic. When a good director comes on board, she gives Jamie the flexibility to improve the show and allows Jamie to be more true to his life experience.


Reviewed by Aidan, Grade 6, Gayton Library

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