Jack Strong Takes a Stand

Tommy Greenwald, illustrated by Melissa Mendes

Roaring Brook Press

Jack Strong just wants to be a regular kid. But his parents have overscheduled his week with every extracurricular activity under the sun: tennis, baseball, cello, karate, tutoring, and Chinese language lessons—all on top of regular homework. His parents want him to be “well-rounded” and prepared for those crucial college applications. Jack’s just about had enough.

And so, in Jack Strong Takes a Stand by Tommy Greenwald, he stages a sit-in on his couch and refuses to get up until his parents let him quit some of the extracurriculars. As Jack’s protest gains momentum, he attracts a local television host who is interested in doing a segment about him. Tensions rise as counter-protesters camp out across the street from Jack and his couch. Jack’s enjoying this newfound attention, but he’s worried that this sit-in may have gone too far.


Read an Excerpt


I was about to go to soccer practice when I decided to go on strike.
I didn’t mean for it to become this big thing.
I was just feeling kind of tired, that’s all.
But the next thing I knew, there were two big television trucks outside my house.
There was a stage on my front lawn, with lights mounted on twenty-foot poles. There was a television host sitting right next to me. There was an audience gathered in front of the stage, full of people. Half of them thought I was a hero, the other half thought I was a menace to society.
And they were



  • Jack Strong Takes a Stand by Tommy Greenwald

    Jack Strong Takes a Stand by Tommy Greenwald



Praise for Jack Strong Takes a Stand

"A cautionary tale the whole family will find amusing and enlightening." -- Kirkus Reviews

"Readily accessible to reluctant readers, but this is sure to entice a wide range of kids, who may just want to stage standoffs themselves." —Booklist "Greenwald successfully melds plot and character surprises to engage youngsters and brings the story to an emotionally satisfying conclusion. Both avid and reluctant readers will enjoy meeting Jack Strong." —School Library Journal

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Tommy Greenwald, illustrated by Melissa Mendes

  • Tommy Greenwald went on strike once in his life, when the local Baskin-Robbins decided to discontinue his favorite flavor, German Chocolate Cake. The strike lasted until he realized they still sold Rocky Road.When Tommy Greenwald’s not sitting on his couch, he’s the Executive Creative Director at SPOTCO, an entertainment advertising agency in New York City. Tommy swears he wasn't anything like the over-involved dad portrayed in this book. Ask his kids! No wait, don't. Tommy lives in Connecticut with his wife, Cathy; his non-reading sons, Charlie, Joe and Jack; and his dogs, Moose and Coco.

    Melissa Mendes is a cartoonist and illustrator living and working in Hancock, MA with her best beau Charles Forsman and their best cat Bruce.

  • Tommy Greenwald
    Tommy Greenwald
  • Melissa Mendes


Available Formats and Book Details

Jack Strong Takes a Stand

Tommy Greenwald, illustrated by Melissa Mendes



Roaring Brook Press