Book Lovers · Family · Middle Grade

Review: The King of Average by Gary Schwartz

Summary: The adventures of a boy named James, who has had to endure the pain and frustration of feeling lonely and unwanted his entire life, and his band of vivacious and entertaining friends who travel across a mystical land trying to help James discover his true purpose and worth.

Genre: Middle Grade

Page Length: 228

Published: 2015

king of average
via Amazon


  • Definitely has a Wizard of Oz esque feel to it which is a plus to me because Baum’s classic series is an all-time favorite of mine
  • Talks about depression and loneliness from a young boy’s perspective (James is around 11 I believe). This is the first middle grade book I’ve read that thoroughly touches on those serious issues. Hopefully more will catch on.
  • Entertaining supporting characters. Each supporting character was enjoyable to read about in their own way. Kiljoy got a tad bit annoying sometimes (the pessimist of the group) because he really is so so SO negative haha, though I suppose that adds to the overall appeal of his character.


  • I felt like the ending came together a little too quickly and well if that makes sense. The page length of the book is fine, though I wanted the characters to spend time in the specific lands a little bit longer rather than go from land to land to land every other chapter it seemed.
  • I really liked this story. Honestly did. And I enjoyed it as a whole, however I didn’t miss it when I put it down and that always brings a rating down for me, sadly. Maybe if the ending was setup for a sequel I would’ve felt differently, though it didn’t seem that way. I would be interested in reading a sequel though.

Final Rating: 3/5

*Thank you to the author’s PR team for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.*

*Some links are affiliate


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