Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 2015
Audience: Children, Younger Teens
"Be careful. Your next step may be your last."
Fifth grader Tamaya Dhilwaddi and seventh grader Marshall Walsh have been walking to and from Woodbridge Academy together since elementary school. But their routine is disrupted when bully Chad Wilson challenges Marshall to a fight. To avoid the conflict, Marshall takes a shortcut home through the off-limits woods. Tamaya reluctantly follows. They soon get lost, and they find trouble. Bigger trouble than anyone could ever have imagined.
In the days and weeks that follow, the authorities and the U.S. Senate become involved, and what they uncover might affect the future of the world.
I wonder how Louis Sachar got the idea for this book. Did he take a walk and see some fuzzy mud, and BOOM story idea? I’m curious. What inspired Fuzzy Mud?
Ooo, so good. Bullying caused big problems for everyone in this book. I loved it. I loved the Senate transcripts, I loved the mystery, I loved the ick factor. Fuzzy Mud contained important lessons, too: don’t bully, stand up for others, and kids can do anything adults can. (The underlying message was that adults were stupid and didn’t believe kids, but I wasn’t insulted. It’s just that a lot of dangerous things happened in this book, and I wouldn’t want kids to be inspired to go off on their own in the woods! Not a good idea! But kids will love it.) Also, it was fast-paced and short - perfect for reluctant readers.