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Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Wrecking Ball is the 14th book in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney. It was released on November 5, 2019. It was indirectly announced in January 2019[1]and was directly confirmed by Amazon on February 20, 2019. Its title and cover were later officially revealed on May 14, 2019. The cover shows Greg in a pile of house debris, with a wrecking ball above him.

Main Characters[]

See minor characters

Synopsis[]

Big changes are in store for Greg Heffley and his family. They are making home improvements! But with unwelcome critters, toxic mould and the walls coming down, soon Greg discovers renovations aren't all they're cracked up to be. When the dust finally settles, will the Heffleys be able to stay . . . or will they need to get out of town?

Plot[]

March[]

Greg and Susan decide to tackle spring cleaning, with Greg planning to sell some of his old items at a yard sale. He also includes broken toys in the sale, hoping to make a little extra money. To prevent theft, he puts his friend Rowley in charge of watching over the items. Susan offered to buy Greg's paper flower for $3, but Greg could tell it was worth more, so he got greedy and raised the price to $10.

As the yard sale continues, a sudden rain shower dampens the event, leading to a lack of buyers for Greg's items. Frustrated by the outcome, Greg shifts his focus to a new idea: saving someone from a dog attack. He comes up with a plan where he gives Rowley raw bacon to attract dogs while Greg himself pretends to be in danger but ensures that the dogs are not wild. The plan backfires as Rowley becomes scared and eats the uncooked bacon, leading him to report the incident to Mr. Jefferson and Mrs. Jefferson.

Feeling disappointed about the yard sale and the dog incident, Greg daydreams about having a holiday dedicated to him. However, in a humorous twist, he also considers that furniture stores might have sales during this time, showcasing his quirky and practical thinking.

April[]

Due to the rain, Greg is now weeding the garden (by pulling out the weeds). Greg, in defense, says that he'll pave his backyard in the future. Greg also plans to have his house underground while famous and plans stuff like a laser tag arena, arcade, bowling ally, and more. He also will set up traps so no one will try to steal his stuff. However, this is really expensive, with all the places all underground.

File:Greg Heffley's Preston Platypus Zoo Ending.jpeg

Greg's Ending

The family finds out that Great Aunt Reba (who used to send Greg angry letters) died, and Susan reads Manny a book series about Preston Platypus, in which he is worried about something, then his mom tells him everything will be ok, and she is right, and Greg reads them because he hopes for a plot twist, but never appears, so he drew a picture of Preston's friends pushing Preston to a lion, which looked like it was about to eat him. Due to this Susan took him to a counselor.

At "Aunt Reba's funeral", they had to wear black but realized they ended up at the wrong funeral and when they went to the correct one, the funeral ended. Greg hoped his dead aunt had a good laugh, but he thinks it's false. During dinner on the next day, Susan had a meeting and said they got an inheritance from Reba. When you find this out, do not act happy. Because it disturbs the person who died. With the money, Frank wanted to spend the money to expand his Civil War Battlefield Diorama, Rodrick wanted to use the money to buy a tour bus. And Manny wanted to fill up his room with chocolate pudding. Greg gets in the conversation and says he wants everyone to have their space on every floor and his will be cool, but Susan attempts to tell everyone in the family about the kitchen, then with more discussions, she storms angrily out the room because she was the only person who ever sent Aunt Reba a thank-you note for anything, so she decided how to use the money.

May[]

The meeting gave Greg the idea to explain the thing to his friend, Rowley Jefferson, about it and his plan to make his room cool, and Rowley was not jealous. Greg wanted to trade houses with Rowley cause Rowley's house is bigger and newer than Greg's house. But Mr. Jefferson shuts the idea down. Frank says if Greg and Rodrick own houses, they are responsible for repairs themselves. Greg tells him it would never happen cause robots will exist, but Frank is not amused. Every time Frank teaches Greg new things, Greg is doing it badly. Like for an example, he tells Rodrick and Greg how to replace a flat tire, but Greg plays video games, and Frank asks what Greg will do if he gets stranded, and Greg says he will always have a whistle, but Frank is not amused again. He brings the subject to plumbing, which scares him because of The Grout, whom Greg is worried about when he was a kid, but if Greg stops thinking about it, it would "go away". The next day, Greg and his older brother had to go to the home improvements store, in which they got kicked out a long time ago since Manny used the toilet on the display floor. Greg says the hot tub has almost killed him twice, like one night a big storm came, and Frank told Greg to fix the cover-up, but almost got flown away. And that same time, Greg slipped the cause of a frozen hose to the stairs.

Rodrick sprays water towards the wasps

Rodrick spraying water at the wasps' nest. Be free, wasps, be free.

Greg realized that wasps were in the hot tub, so Rodrick came in and sprayed with them with a hose, but they did not get stung. Then, Greg had to clean the gutters and he mentions that Frank won't clean the gutters ever since he had a run-in with a squirrel. Greg asked Rodrick if he could clean the gutter instead but he disagrees. After this, Greg climbed the ladder and he told Rodrick to hold the base of the ladder. But on his fourth trip up, he felt that the ladder was more wobbly than usual. He yells down to Rodrick but he doesn't get a response. And when he looked at the bathroom window, he saw that Rodrick was inside the house. He knocked the glass to get his attention. But he leans over too far and so he grabs the edge of the roof with both his hands and climbs on the roof. He yells out to Susan and Frank but he still doesn't get a response. Then he spots Mr. Larocca driving his lawn mower out of his shed. He shouts to him but Mr. Larocca couldn't hear him. After a while, Greg starts worrying about getting dehydrated and takes off most of his clothes. Then he remembers that there is a window on teh side of the house above the garage., so he climbed down to reach the window, but he got stuck in the toilet while Susan was showering, making her scream. Frank attempts to fix the washing machine but fails and the family had to clean clothes by hand, except for Rodrick. He instead puts his dirty clothes in the dishwasher and Rodrick went to school in his van with his wet clothes drying off but was caught by cops. The parents called a plumber and fixed the washing machine and Manny used Susan's credit card to pay. After school on Wednesday, workers did construction. A guy was using a backhoe, and Greg talked that he and Rowley almost dug to China but failed. If they had that, they would've dug to China. Not only does Greg plan to dig to China, but he also wants to destroy the school. Susan gave workers drinks because she feels sorry who had to sweat, but after that, they went to the bathroom. Greg found a worker that had a magazine while going to use the restroom. Greg thought he would read his magazine and will camp out there, so he pushed the test button on the smoke detector, making a loud noise and it was off. Workers got out by the door and Manny threw his toys in a pile outside and bounces off of it.

Greg's parents were not happy he did that, but they at least got bathrooms that can be used outdoors. After they poured concrete for the foundation, the crew framed the addition. Greg's dad made him go outside and work with the men, but Manny wanted to go, even though Frank said he was too young to work. The foreman told him a guy named "Buddy" is the guy to talk to right now, and he was busy framing. Greg said he's in charge, making the crew not impressed. Greg figures out a prank, the wall standing by itself, and he told Buddy if he can nail boards, but Greg needed to use the hammer for right-handed people. Greg helped out a lot, and he served lunch. He attempts to give a meatball sub to Luther, but Greg knew he would confront him for the meatballs disappearing. Greg put the bun and spilled all the meatballs into a can of concrete. Luther accuses Buddy, then a fight came, and Greg got out of it.

Greg talks that his neighbors are treating the family as slaves, and on top of that, workers made noise and people complained. Mrs. Tuttle is not happy that her flowers were trampled by the workers and forced the family to replace them and a lady who had a cat step on a nail at the Heffley's yard, and Frank had to pay the vet bill. Manny is building a house, and when Greg attempts to take out the trash had to chase the trash after it gets blown away. As a result, Greg goes to bed late trying to explain he was not toilet papering a neighbour's house and has a test, which he flunks. Rodrick thinks a wrecking ball will smash the house and make a music video with his band about it but were not happy when this never happens. The house has mice, which prompts Greg to say his house will be full of glass. Rodrick plans to exterminate the mice with a snake, and he will buy a mongoose to eat the snake, making Rodrick get a lot of pets to catch one another. Albert Sandy talks about a person that got struck and full of electricity. The air conditioner had to be removed cause the workers can bring in a big thing. They can live in a bunker and might be stuck forever. If Greg had a better driveway, he could play basketball. Cats hunt mice, and jerks want to write bad things on the wet concrete. Smoke came in, and everyone got out. The reason smoke started was that Susan heated some bacon but did not know chips were in the oven. She and Frank asked Mrs. Tuttle to allow them to build the structure that was too close to her property, but she refuses because the mixer trampled her garden. The structure had to be put down, and people are not happy, but Manny and his friends had a party.

June[]

Test scores came in, like the test Greg flunked, but the grade flunked it due to a lizard roaming around and distracting kids. Susan is upset about lower school district funding, and she guessed they had to move, but Frank said he lived in this town, and Rodrick said he dislikes moving cause his band is famous in Greg's town. Manny does not want to move, due to having sprinklers. If the family moved but Rodrick, he would live in the basement and will never notice that a new family came in. Greg wants to move because he can act like a new person and act like a gangster or a snowboarder. Or Greg can pretend to not speak English. They find their new house is way better with an indoor pool, a big kitchen, and stuff like that. Now the family is all on board with the idea of moving in. He also says he used to play a game called M.A.S.H., which is predicting your future. Greg once wanted to marry Becky Anton and tells her this in the middle of class, but she got disturbed and told the teacher to swap partners. Greg swapped with another kid named Kelson Garrity, who used to be famous but lost his spot when he picks his nose. Greg says he needs a friend who needs to be like Rowley and some people goofed off at the open house the family had. Greg says he wants to skip school next year, but his parents might end up in prison for that.

Farewell Dance Party

"Yay! The Heffleys are leaving!"

Rowley got upset when Greg tells him that he is moving. He reads him a book about how Preston will miss his friend, making Rowley really upset. The family packs, and then has a moving away party. While Greg is setting up for it, his best friend, Rowley arrives. He gives Greg a collage of some of the fun things they did together over the years, which causes Greg and Rowley to cry. Rodrick was with his band playing music, which he creates a mob of the neighborhood. Like Nasty Pants, Mitchell Pickett, Speed Bump, high school students, and more. Manny's party was wild at nighttime. The next day, they were moving, however, not voluntarily, since they miscalculated a little and thought they day of moving were a week later. Movers came in and they had to put stuff in the moving van. However, a crane causes the hot tub to severely damage the house and land in Rodrick's basement, right smack in the center. Since the house is destroyed, the people who want to buy the house refuse to pay, which means the Heffleys won't be moving until they can find a way to pay for the house they were intending to buy, or they're likely not to move at all. Despite this, Greg is glad to have not left Rowley and learns some harsh lessons, like never miss an old lady's funeral or she will make you pay.

After the events of this book, The Heffley family had to stay at Gramma's basement since their house is destroyed, which continues the plot of The Deep End.

Trivia[]

  • This is the last book to be released in the 2010s decade.
  • Many fans consider this book to be a return to the series' roots.
  • This is the first book to have Jeff Kinney's name stacked instead of flat.
  • Greg mentions reading a book where kids visit another world through their closet, an obvious nod to the first Chronicles of Narnia book The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe. Mr. Tumnus also makes an appearance when Greg references the book.
  • Hard Luck is referenced when Greg says Susan read him the same book from when Meemaw passed away.
  • According to the topics of the Preston Platypus books, Greg may have gotten a new babysitter at one point.
  • This is the fifth book where Greg has cried.
  • One of Greg's journals appears on Page 28.
  • This book marks the second time where the antagonist is actually an entire fantasy. The first was Old School with Silas Scratch.
  • This book does not mention the Pig, as Greg has not mentioned his family's luck in finding him.
    • When Manny escapes the house by landing on his stuffed animals a face resembling the pig is seen among the pile, this could signify that Manny is hiding him, and has been caring for him in secret.
  • This is the second book since Hard Luck where the picture before the inside cover is not actually seen in the book. (a close-up of the clogged drain wasn't shown)
  • This is the fourth book to not be related to Greg's school life. The first being Dog Days, the second being The Long Haul, and the third being The Getaway. However, it does have some brief mentions at the beginning of June.
  • Like in the previous two books, Grandpa Heffley isn't seen living with the Heffley family.
    • This may be because he has gotten a job or somehow managed to afford the rent at Leisure Towers or another residence.
  • This is the first time Rowley has his eyes closed on the character page.
    • This is also the third book where his mouth doesn't show a happy expression, the first being Hard Luck, and the second being Double Down.
    • This is also the first time when he has a crying expression.
  • This is the first book where Susan closes her eyes while wearing glasses. It is first seen on page 178. However, on page 64, she can be seen closing her eyes in a cameo.
  • This is the fourth book to have symbols over swear words.
  • In the arcade at Greg's imaginary house, an OutRun arcade machine can be seen.
  • This is the first book since Cabin Fever where Nasty Pants appears. However, if you don't look closely, you won't see it.
  • This is the first book since The Ugly Truth to cover more than 2 months.
  • This is the first book to show Greg almost move.
  • In Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid, Rowley mentions that when Greg got a strike at a bowling party, he said he was "retired." He says it again on page 121.
  • On the topic of Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid, page 198 shows Greg and Rowley putting images of them in concrete, with the art style of Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid.
  • 797 words are written in all capital letters in this book.
    • The only pages without capital words are 7, 11, 14 and 105.
  • This is the first time Greg is touched and cries, which is shown on page 202.
  • The pictures are noticeably larger than they are in the other books.
  • Getting this book from a particular store will have an exclusive sticker with the words "Lots of laughter guaranteed!"
  • The part where the Löded Diper band wants to perform with a wrecking ball is a reference to the real life Miley Cyrus music video, "Wrecking Ball".
  • This book has the most illustrations.
  • The rabbit's foot from Hard Luck reappears in a picture of Greg's old items out of his closet.
  • On page 201 one of the pictures is Rowley and Greg in the Two-headed monster from Double Down.
  • This is the first book to contain a texture instead of a single color assuited for the title, going for the construction theme. Later books after this do the same. For example, The Deep End uses a swimming pool texture, and No Brainer uses a chalk texture (to reference the feel of a blackboard)

Goofs/Errors[]

  • On page 34, Greg says if his birthday becomes a national holiday, then everybody would get a day off from school and work, but his birthday is in June, which is during the summer, so it's doubtful whether most schools would actually be affected. It should've said a day off of work. Some schools, however, do continue through June and into early July.
  • On page 31, the sign for “Hot Dog Heaven” is misspelled as “Hot Dog Haven”, though that might be intentional.
  • On page 80, Greg mentions that he had no idea about the fact that doors could be removed by the hinges, something he had directly done in Rodrick Rules. Also when they are unclogging the pipe the floor is shown through the drain cover.
  • Greg said he could be a great athlete in the future. However, in The Meltdown, he said the hill he lives on makes kids unable to play sports. This is a continuity error.
    • It's is possible that Greg was talking about being a great athlete in another place, not on the hill he lives on.
  • Rodrick is claimed to still be attending school, however, he was shown having to look for colleges in Double Down. However, as claimed in The Long Haul, Jeff Kinney mentioned that there would be fewer continuity references.
  • On page 160, the girl is the only one with a paper on her desk, but Greg has none and the other boy appears to be writing on his desk. However, this could be intentional.
    • This error also appears on page 159. No one in the class has a paper, but the bigger-looking boy is writing on his desk with his pencil. Again, this could be intentional.
  • On page 163, the leftmost girl next to Becky Anton appears to be missing her left arm completely. However, two hands are holding the paper in front of her.
  • Greg mentions that during the open house, the dads are watching football. However, June is during the NFL and College Football off-seasons.
    • It is possible that the game is a rerun.
    • It is also possible that they are watching USFL which does occur in June.
  • On page 52, Rodrick is seen wearing a black tie, but on page 59, he wears a striped one.
  • In the first book, Greg says he can't run fast, but in Wrecking Ball he can run fast, although he could have become faster as he got older. This might be the most likely reason for Greg's fast running.
  • On page 25, one of the guy's arms doesn't have a black sleeve, while the other does. However, it may be that one of the full sleeves had been cut off.
  • On page 161 on the M.A.S.H. page under wife it says Holly Hills as one of the girls. However, in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules (2011 film) when Greg was going into 7th grade, Chirag Gupta said that she just moved in, but Greg says he created the MASH page when he was in fifth grade.

Gallery[]

See Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Wrecking Ball/Gallery

Videos[]

The_new_book_in_the_hit_Diary_of_a_Wimpy_Kid_series!_Wrecking_Ball!

The new book in the hit Diary of a Wimpy Kid series! Wrecking Ball!

References[]

  1. This promo for Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson's Journal has Greg state that his next book is coming out "this fall."
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