Book cover image for Dear Dumb Diary: Let’s Pretend This Never Happened

Publication date: March 2011
Publisher: Puffin
ISBN: 9780141335780
Page count: 128
Price: £4.99
Size: 192mm × 124mm
Age group: 8–10 

Dear Dumb Diary: Let’s Pretend This Never Happened

by Jim Benton (Author)


This is the first in Benton’s Dear Dumb Diary series, the twelfth of which has just been published in America. The protagonist, Jamie Kelly, is a preteen girl whose diary reveals her biggest worries: getting a nickname in school, her less-than-perfect hair, her mother’s undesirable cooking, and her place on the school’s popularity barometer.

The diary also details her rivalry with Angeline, the most popular girl at school. Jamie’s dog Stinker and best friend Isabella also feature, though none of the characters is explored in great detail. The diary itself charts a month or so of her life.

Jamie proves to be a self-aware, somewhat self-absorbed character who is unconcerned about school and deliberately gets into trouble. The tone is unapologetically sarcastic and will provide laugh-out-loud moments for preteens who understand her world. Jamie’s diary is littered with vernacular terms that readers will enjoy. Captioned illustrations complement the humour of the book and the series is destined to attract a loyal following. 

Review by
Louise Conlon

This review was published online in
September 2011