My daughter insisted that I buy this book. Some friends at her school told her about it. I read the first several pages and was intrigued. I read it and was happily surprised. It was funny, sad, and taught a couple of good lessons. I was a little leary about the bank robbing uncle, but he was fun character after all. I would recommend it to anyone with preteens. My daughter loves the lead character and especially the snake. She said that she will read it over and over again.