Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus


Title: Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus

Author: Barbara Park

Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers

Number of pages: 69

Type of Book: Fiction; Contemporary, Series

Age: 5 – 8

Available here: http://www.amazon.com/Junie-Jones-Stupid-Smelly-Bus/dp/0679826424; or listen to the audio file here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3O76tvcTx0k

Price: $2.97


She licked her shoes to make them shiny. She looked at one of her new classmates, a boy, and her first thought was ‘I think I can beat him up’. She hid in the supply closet after school to avoid getting into the school bus! She is Junie B. Jones.

Junie B. is a precocious almost six-year-old who gets into the most ridiculous and hilarious scrapes. In this book, the first book of the series, it’s Junie B.’s first day of school and a classmate unwittingly tells her something so ‘scary’ that Junie B. decides not to go home after school. She hides out in a closet in her class, then pops out later to explore her new school. She ‘plays’ teacher in her classroom, sharpens all the pencils plus a crayon on the librarian’s desk in the library, hops on and falls off a pair of crutches in the nurse’s office, and finally has an ’emergency'(she has to go the bathroom) and calls 911 to rescue her!

This is the perfect fun and funny book for beginning readers. One of my favorite lines comes right after Junie B. does something silly and her mum rolls her eyes:

‘Mother rolled her eyes and looked at the ceiling. I looked up there, too. But I didn’t see anything’

Told in the first person, it’s exciting, funny and fast-paced.


UP: This book sets the stage for subsequent books in the series. It’s quite easy to read, very very funny and the illustrations are super! I am desperately in love with the series. It is one of the reasons I decided to start writing again. I recommend this book for boys and girls (girls particularly) between the ages of 5 and 8, especially reluctant readers and kids who love to laugh.

DOWN: Junie B. uses some unsavoury words like stupid, dumb, hate, etc. Young readers must be made to understand that these words are bad.

Junie B. also mixes up her tenses, something that’s pretty common with kids but not with books. Again, this could be another ‘teaching’ opportunity for the parent/guardian of the young reader.


5 Stars


  1. Junie B.’s favourite things in the world. Books!


CHALLENGE: Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus


  • Write a short story about your first day in primary school (7-8 year olds)


  • Draw (and name) two big items in your bedroom and two small items in your living room (5-6 year olds)

Send your answers to ugochinyelu.anidi@gmail.com

Entry requirements: Entrants must be within the 5 – 8 age range. The first correct entry will be announced on this page and will win a copy of this book.

Answers must be submitted before 12:00am on Wednesday, February 24th 2015.

Next Book of the Week:

ONLY BREAD FOR EZE by Ifeoma Okoye



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