Max and Maggie can’t seem to get along. Their mom finally has enough of the constant squabbling, and tells them they need to keep a shared journal during the summer so they can develop better communication. They will alternate picking the topics to write about, but each has to share on the same topic.
Over the course of the summer, they discuss doctor visits, babies, ice cream, sports, and other topics common to ten year olds. They will receive extra points for good spelling, and they aren’t allowed to be be mean to each other. And if all goes according to plan, their mom hopes that they will be getting along better by the end of the summer.
The format of this book is lined notebook paper with “hand-written” font and numerous drawings and side notes. This kid-friendly style is sure to appeal to the younger reader. But I couldn’t really see these discussions happening between two normal middle-grade kids, especially twin siblings. The language was too perfect, they were too well-behaved, and the conversation felt repetitive as each child shared on the same topic. There just wasn’t enough humorous give and take in the dialogue. However adults will like the fact that Max and Maggie are mostly respectful of each other and their parents.
Reviewer: Alice Berger