Today we are pleased to welcome two fabulous authors to our blog, Cynthia Leitich Smith and Uma Krishnaswami, for a discussion about writing and reading humor. Welcome, Cynthia and Uma!
Oh the weather outside is frightful, but a middle school sense of humor is so delightful! When the temperature is freezing, what better way to spend your time than by reading a hilarious book? We’ve put together a list of middle grade humor books (all of which feature diverse main characters), so get ready to have your funny bone tickled!
Note: In general, middle grade books are appropriate for kids ages 8-12. If any of these books fall outside that range, we’ve tried to note that below.
For you visual learners, we’ve also pinned these titles on Pinterest:
These books have been recommended in various places – we haven’t (yet) read them all ourselves. If you have other recommended humorous middle grade titles that feature characters of color or are written by authors of color, let us know in the comments! For more on middle grade humor, check out Cat Girl’s Day Off author Kimberly Pauley’s guest post she wrote on How to Write Humor for Young Readers.
Let the giggles and laughs commence!
Alvin Ho: Allergic to Babies, Burglars, and Other Bumps in the Night by Lenore Look, ill. by LeUyen Pham: Alvin Ho is an Asian American second grader who is afraid of everything—elevators, tunnels, girls, and, most of all, school. But at home he’s a very loud superhero named Firecracker Man, a brother to Calvin and Anibelly, and a gentleman-in-training, so he can be just like his dad.
In this guest post, Cat Girl’s Day Off and Sucks to Be Me author Kimberly Pauley offers some advice for authors who want to write humor. Her books have been called “entertaining, hilarious, and exceptionally creative,” (School Library Journal) and been praised for their “pitch-perfect humor” (Booklist).
My son is five and he’s (obviously) a boy. That means he finds slapstick humor absolutely jaw-droppingly hilarious. Tom and Jerry make him laugh so hard that he will literally fall out of his chair. My husband has (mostly) outgrown that style of humor, however, and tends to laugh at more intellectual Eddie Izzard-style jokes. That’s the great thing about humor-it’s not all one-size-fits all. Different things make different people laugh. So how do you write a funny story to appeal to more than just yourself?