Dingus | Book Review

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Author: Andrew Larsen

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Publication Date: May 2, 2017

Publisher: Kids Can Press


Summer vacation is starting, and soon-to-be-sixth-grader Henry is facing two months with nothing to do. He can sadly feel himself being pulled by the gravitational force of nothingness. His best friend, Max, who may not even be his best friend anymore, is going away to chess camp. And all Henry’s stay-at-home father has planned for him and his toddler brother, Sam, is something called a staycation. Things start looking up, however, when he finds out they’ll be dog-sitting his grandfather’s dog, Rupert. That is, until the day they bring Rupert to the park, where Henry does something irresponsible. Something with real consequences. And suddenly Henry would give anything to go back to the nothingness. Can Henry make things right? Or has he turned into the dingus Max said he shouldn’t be?


Thank you so much to Kids Can Press for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for my opinion.


  1. A person or animal that displays stupidity or does something disappointing. A different and possibly more polite way to call a friend a fool or a goof
  2. A dingus is NOT a stupid person. A dingus is someone who can make you laugh or upset you by doing stupid THINGS. A stupid person is an idiot. An idiot and a dingus are different. A dingus is more like a goof. A dingus is not to be confused with a doofus.

As Henry is nearing the end of school, he also feels that he is nearing the end of his life-long friendship with Max. While everyone is off spending summer at camps and on vacation, Henry is stuck having a “staycation” with his dad and baby brother.

Just when things couldn’t get any worse, they do. When Henry is entrusted to watch over his grandfathers’ dog, the last thing that is on his mind is the dog running away. But, not everything in life is perfect.

Being a middle-grade book, I feel like this book is a perfect quick read for them. The cover reflects different points in the story and tells the message that there is no amount of money that can buy happiness.



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