A few days ago a kid asked me for books "like" the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney. I sighed, then set to work coming up with suggestions.
     Basically I tried to find titles that fit a few or all of the following criteria:

aimed at boys
first-person narrator
diary format
school stories

     Here's my list, which I'll be putting on an end-cap display:

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

Whales On Stilts! by M.T. Anderson

The Strange Case of Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger

Science Fair by Dave Barry & Ridley Pearson

Superfudge by Judy Blume

NERDS by Michael Buckley

Notes From a Totally Lame Vampire by Tim Collins & Andrew Pinder

Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key by Jack Gantos

The Day My Butt Went Psycho by Andy Griffiths

Just Joking! by Andy Griffiths

Flush by Carl Hiaasen

Swindle by Gordon Korman

Leon and the Champion Chip by Allen Kurzweil

I Am a Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want To Be Your Class President by Josh Lieb

In the Land of the Lawn Weenies by David Lubar

My Rotten Life: Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie by David Lubar

Middle School, the Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson, Christopher Tebbetts, and Laura Park

Big Nate by Lincoln Peirce

Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey

How To Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell

The Dork Diaries by Rachel Russell

Wayside School Gets a Little Stranger by Louis Sachar

Guys Read: Funny Business edited by Jon Scieszka

Guy Time by Sarah Weeks

Zorgamazoo by Robert Paul Weston

Malice by Chris Wooding

Stanford Wong Flunks Big-Time by Lisa Yee

Books by Roald Dahl, while not realistic, might be comedic & snarky enough to fit the bill.

COMING SOON: September - December

The "coming attractions" board behind the circulation desk
          In case anyone is wondering which teen and YA series are popular around here, this is our latest "Coming soon..." board with the upcoming releases our students are peeing their pants in excitement about.
          As you'll see below, the two obvious trends in popular teen/YA fiction are 1) authors who probably don't really write their own books anymore because their names are so bankable anything with their name on it will sell, and 2) "tangential" series fiction, which is confusing to library workers because the same author will have 2 series going that look the same but they're not.

Here's the run-down of upcoming series fiction:

September 19th: James Patterson's & Ned Rust's Daniel X: Game Over, which is #4 in the "Daniel X" series. The title makes you think it's the last in the series but we've been tricked by teen series before, like Eragon, which was supposed to be a trilogy but turned into a 4-book sequence.

September 20th: Heather Brewer's First Kill, first in the "Slayer Chronicles," which is kind of a tangential series to her super popular "Vladimir Tod" series, only this time it's told from the vampire SLAYER'S viewpoint. Necessary? Not sure, but the kids will want to read it.

October 11th: James Dashner's The Death Cure, 3rd and supposedly final in the "Maze Runner" trilogy. Like I said, we've been tricked by "trilogies" before, so if this dystopian series continues to make money, the publisher might pressure Mr. Dashner into making a four or five-book "trilogy."

November 15th: Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever, #6 in the "Wimpy Kid" series. It's like the new "Captain Underpants" or something. Ugh.

December 5th: James Patterson's & Jill Dembowski's The Fire, #3 in the "Witch & Wizard" series. Patterson. Hmph. Sick o' him. He's juggling too many plates and they're gonna start crashing. Besides, so much of his stuff is written WITH other writers, how much of it is he even really doing these days? I think he's just a brand, now. Maybe James Patterson doesn't even EXIST, like Franklin W. Dixon or Carolyn Keene. Have you ever seen him in person? I haven't. He's an urban legend. Nobody can write that many books.

December 6th: Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare, #2 in "The Infernal Devices" series. This is a tangential/simultaneous series (like Heather Brewer's above) that co-exists with Clare's continuing "Mortal Instruments" series. Clare is actually writing the two series at the same time. Both take place in the same fantasy world, but along different timelines. Confused? Read the author's explanation of this HERE. I haven't made up my mind yet if I find that impressive or annoying.

Here's a few other bonus upcoming releases we also have posted behind the counter:

October 4th: Rick Riordan's Son of Neptune, #2 in the "Heroes of Olympus" series. It's like a whole sequel series to the "Percy Jackson" series, about the next group of young kids at Camp Half-Blood. Not quite as annoying as a tangential series, but I still have to keep explaining it to students.

November 4th: Christopher Paolini's Inheritance, #4 in the Eragon, or "Inheritance" series. Which was supposed to be a trilogy.