On November 17th, The Diary of a Wimpy Kid tour bus emblazoned with the book's familiar characters rolled up to Kids Ink bookstore on 52nd and Illinois Street in Indianapolis. As author Jeff Kinney emerged from the bus he was greeted by over 150 fans. Adults and children alike clutched his latest book, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel, as they waited in line to meet the book's creator.
When asked about his decision to visit small, independent book sellers on this tour, he remarked, "We realized as we have created bigger events for our books, we weren't going to the stores that made The Wimpy Kid series a success in the first place." He was thrilled with the domestic leg of the tour where he signed over 17,000 books. "I'd like to thank the fans in the midwest. We were very warmly received."
The wildly popular series has been delighting readers since 2004 when it began as a comic on FunBrain.com. First printed in 2007, the books present the hilarious account of the life of a middle school boy named Greg Heffley.
Among the fans that day was Daniel Tully, a fifth grader at Fall Creek Intermediate school in Fishers. When asked if he was excited, he replied, "I am not sure which I am more excited about, the new book or the chance to meet Jeff Kinney. He is my hero!"
Kinney is somewhat of a hero to parents of reluctant readers as well. Despite what some might think, many educators consider comic books and graphic novels legitimate reading. "I would not call my work high literature but it definitely has a valid place on library shelves. The books have turned many kids on to reading, and I am very proud of my approach to humor as it relates to kids. My books are their own kind of thing, they don't pretend to be something they're not," says Kinney.
To read the complete interview and for a chance to win an autographed copy of Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel, visit www.indyschild.com