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Book Review

This early reader book by Doreen Cronin, with illustrations by Harry Bliss, is published by Joanna Cotler Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers and is written for kids ages 4 to 8. The age range reflects readability and not necessarily content appropriateness. (There are other "Diary" books by this author, such as Diary of a Fly, but they are not considered a series. Three of them have been grouped together and sold as "The Bug Diaries.")

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Through short journal entries, a young worm describes his daily life. He burrows in the ground to help the earth breathe and tries, unsuccessfully, to teach his friend, Spider, to do the same. He watches out for the dangers around him, such as fishermen digging for bait and kids playing hopscotch. He scares little girls, eats his macaroni art project and engages in a very abbreviated “Hokey Pokey” dance with classmates. Amid dreams of becoming a Secret Service agent, he gets in trouble at school for eating his homework and at home for telling his sister her face looks just like her rear end.

He sustains a special friendship with Spider, even though they often compare themselves to each other based on their anatomic differences. The worm concludes that he dislikes being a worm because he has so much homework and can't chew gum or have a dog. But he does like that he can always track mud through the house and doesn't have to bathe. He finds it hard to be so small and forgettable, but Mom reminds him that the earth never forgets he's there.

Christian Beliefs


Other Belief Systems

Mom tells the worm to remember that the earth gives them everything they need. She also says that even though people forget worms are there, the earth never forgets about them.

Authority Roles

Mom is frequently pictured in the young worm's diary, offering advice or encouragement. Dad also hugs and praises his son for his wormly acts, such as remaining dirty.




If your children have read this book or someone has read it to them, consider these discussion topics:

  • Mom tells her son the earth gives them everything they need.
  • What does a worm need?
  • How do people need the same or different things?
  • Who gives you everything you need?

  • What are some of the dangers the worm talks about in his journal?

  • What does he do to protect himself from them?
  • What are some things in your life that scare you?
  • What can you do to protect yourself from those dangers?
  • Whom can you ask for help?

Discussion Topics

This review is brought to you by Focus on the Family, a donor-based ministry. Book reviews cover the content, themes and world-views of fiction books, not their literary merit, and equip parents to decide whether a book is appropriate for their children. A book's inclusion does not constitute an endorsement by Focus on the Family.

You can request a review of a title you can't find at reviewrequests@family.org.

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range

4 to 8


Doreen Cronin






Record Label



Joanna Cotler Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers


On Video

Year Published




We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

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