Judy Moody Was in a Mood by Megan McDonald Illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds

Judy Moody #1. Candlewick Press (August 2010) Library
The first installment in the popular and best-selling series starring Judy Moody. To start, Judy Moody doesn't have high hopes for third grade. Her new desk won't have an armadillo sticker with her name on it. Her new classroom will not have a porcupine named Roger. And with her luck, she'll get stuck sitting in the first row, where Mr. Todd will notice every time she tries to pass a note to her best friend, Rocky. An aspiring doctor, Judy does have a little brother who comes in handy for practicing medicine, a cool new pet, and a huge Band-Aid collection. Judy also has an abundance of individuality and attitude, and when Mr. Todd assigns a very special class project, she really gets a chance to express herself Megan McDonald's spirited text and Peter Reynolds's wry illustrations combine in a feisty, funny first chapter book for every kid who has ever felt a little out of sorts.

Judy Moody first came out when I was in the first grade (I did the math). I remember first seeing a whole portable shelf thing with just Judy Moody books at a book fair once but I never checked what it was about let alone got one for myself. Maybe it was the whole "moody" thing. Maybe I thought that she was too uptight or too popular or something although if I was thinking like that at that age then I was the weird one. Anyways it was a mistake. Judy Moody is an adorable book that I'm sure plenty of girls love and many more will come to love when they discover her. She is very moody but that isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Judy Moody was starting third grade and she was not happy about it. Gone were the days where she didn't have to brush her hair everyday or get out of bed anytime she wanted or even do nothing if she felt like it. She also wouldn't have a class pet porcupine named Roger and she surely would have to sit in the first row with paste eating Frank Pearl bothering her every five minutes. No, it won't be the same but if Judy Moody can get out of her bad mood once she will see that third grade isn't so bad and that she might have judged some people too quickly. 

Judy Moody (I love saying her full name) knows who she is, what she likes, and what she doesn't. She's very sassy and acts the way she wants. She's also very inventive, clever, and smart. I loved how whenever she thought something was cool she would say rare! and how she wore her tiger-striped pajama pants like a star. She didn't mind getting dirty with the boys and playing pranks on her little brother (I thought she could have been nicer to her brother). She is pretty much your average day girl who's got some spunk to her. She was fun to read about and learn about.

The third grade class that she is in gets a month long assignment from the teacher, Mr. Todd, or like Judy Moody likes to call him - Mr. Toad. The assignment is a "Me" project. It's basically a collage of who you are. You put things like where you live, hobbies, what's your favorite pet, and the funniest thing that ever happened to you. Throughout the book you find  more about her and she puts those things on her "Me" project. Some things she already knows like how her hobby is to collect things and other things she doesn't know yet like her favorite pet because according to her, her cat named Mouse is too old and lazy so she finds a new "pet". I thought it was clever of the author to introduce Judy Moody this way. You got to figure out who she was and her personality a little more this way.

Judy Moody has a little brother named Stink. Now I honestly don't know if his actual name is Stink because he isn't called anything else. I felt bad for him because Judy could be a little harsh on him. He was being the typical hovering little brother that wanted to do everything. Stink even has his own series after Judy so you see he tries to make sure he's included in every way. Her best friend is Rocky who has a thing for magic tricks. It would be nice if there is a book just about her and Rock's friendship (I don't know if there is one or not) so I could get to know him better. Then there is Frank Pearl the paste eating boy who invited her to his birthday on the first day which she avoids responding to whenever he brings it up. There's not much to tell about him without ruining anything so I won't...

Overall: Judy Moody Was in a Mood is a great book for girls. Judy Moody seems like she would be a great character to grow up with although I wish she would be nicer to her brother. It was a fun journey that I plan on continuing with the rest of the series so don't be surprised if you see more Judy Moody reviews on here. And of course, did you notice who illustrated this book? Yes! It's Peter H. Reynolds who I love as an artist. He did a fantastic job capturing the characters personalities.

For More info you should go to the Judy Moody website where there are excerpts for all the books, there are also activities you can do as well as there are some here, and you can get a certificate to join the fan club which is pretty much adorable defined. You can learn about the Stink series also at a separate website.

If you like Judy Moody you might want to check out the Ramona Quimby series, Junie B. Jones, the Stink series of course, and also a book I have read and enjoyed that I think Judy Moody fans will love (it's part of the Fudge series):

Life with his little brother, Fudge, makes Peter Hatcher feel like a fourth grade nothing. Whether Fudge is throwing a temper tantrum in a shoe store, smearing mashed potatoes on the walls at Hamburger Heaven, or trying to fly, he’s never far from trouble. He’s an almost three-year-old terror who gets away with everything, and Peter’s had it up to here!                 
When Fudge walks off with Dribble, Peter’s pet turtle, it’s the last straw. Peter has put up with Fudge for too long. Way too long! How can he get his parents to pay attention to him for a change?


  1. I just bought a Judy Moody book for my daughter. Thanks for the web links. My daughter will enjoy that. :)

    1. She will LOVE Judy Moody. Have fun with the activities!

  2. I have two of these books, but haven't read them yet. I must read them! They sound great and the covers are cute. Thanks for opening my eyes to a new series. I hope to read them over the summer. I love Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing. :)

    1. I'm surprised that you haven't read them yet. I guess since I consider them children classics I would think you would have read them. This first was simply wonderful. I hope you do get to enjoy them over the summer (:


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