Book Review: Top Ten Ways to Ruin the First Day of School

by stryson

In this book, author Ken Derby introduces us to Anthony Madison, known fondly among friends as Tony Baloney, or TB.  TB is in fifth grade and is obsessed with David Letterman.  He is bound and determined to get onto Letterman’s show, and throughout the first half of the book, TB orchestrates one crazy scheme after another, in the hopes that it’ll get him on television.  Most of these hijinks go spectacularly wrong, of course.  Midway through the book, our hero does get noticed by Letterman, finally.  This, of course, means that TB is off to New York City… where anything can and will happen to a boy who’s a magnet for trouble.

I started off the year in my fifth grade class reading this book.  It was an excellent choice for them; the reading was light and funny, and it beautifully illustrated plot development.  I’ve had other students come to me over the course of the year to borrow the book, on the recommendation of my class.  That in itself should be an adequate seal of approval.

The book has its own page on Ken Derby’s website, here.


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