I am a Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want to be Your Class President
You may not recognize Josh Lieb’s name right off the bat, but I’ll clue you in — he’s the Executive Producer of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. (Okay, the quote on the cover of the book may have clued you in, as well.) Needless to say, that was a big reason why I chose to read this book. And what do you know — I liked it, too!
Oliver Watson is a dumpy, overweight, cranky 7th grader who hates the world…but he has an advantage: he’s an evil genius with a gajillion dollars and has control over pretty much every aspect of his life and the lives of those around him. His classmates all hate him (naturally), and as a prank one of them nominates him to run for class president – assuming of course, that he will lose and never live down the embarrassment. Oliver begrudgingly runs, but only — and he’d never admit this — to get approval from his dad, who seems to view Oliver more as a threat than a someone to be proud of. It’s a middle school story, through and through.
I like novels that have boys as the protagonist because there never seems to be enough of them. I also like novels that have protagonists who aren’t supposed to be likable — especially when you end up liking them anyway. I wouldn’t say that I was cheering for Oliver to win (or become a better person) in this book (he can sort things out for himself, so he doesn’t really need cheering on), but I still liked reading his story — which would probably piss him off, now that I think about it.
Oh, and here is a video of Josh Lieb and Jon Stewart talking about how awesome this book is: