The journal of a twelve-year-old girl, accompanied by notes as artifacts from the family's cross-country train trip, reveals that we all may enjoy life more if we sweep aside the resentment we tend to feel for life getting in the way of our plans to live life. Sara and family accompany mother Mimi, who has won a writer's train sabbatical, across the continental United States. On their way, they meet unexpected new friends, and Sara learns ways to reinvent herself that are not on her planned out, preparing-for-middle school list. Sweet moments arise as Levy balances what these family members are like with elements inherent to the part of the country they're visiting. Accompanying the depth that comes with the chance for characters to react to different locations, the artifacts offer multiple voices to avoid the unreliability that might have arisen from reading one character's impressions.
— Todd Wellman
From the author of The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher comes an epic cross-country train trip for fans of Dan Santat's Are We There Yet? and Geoff Rodkey's The Tapper Twins. Pack your suitcase and climb on board with the Johnston-Fischer family. Sara Johnston-Fischer loves her family, of course. But that doesn't mean she's thrilled when her summer plans are upended for a surprise cross-country train trip with her two moms, Mimi and Carol; her younger sister, Ladybug; her older sister, Laurel; and Laurel's poncho-wearing activist boyfriend, Root. And to make matters worse, one of her moms is writing a tell-all book about the trip . . . and that means allllll, every ridiculous and embarrassing moment of Sara's life. Sara finds herself crisscrossing the country with a gaggle of wild Texans. As they travel from New Orleans to Chicago to the Grand Canyon and beyond, Sara finds herself changing along with the landscape outside the train windows. And she realizes that she just might go home reinvented.
About the Author
Dana Alison Levy was raised by pirates but escaped at a young age and went on to earn a degree in aeronautics and puppetry. Actually, that's not true--she just likes to make things up. That's why she has always wanted to write books. Her books about the Family Fletcher have garnered starred reviews, been named to multiple Best Of lists, and were Junior Library Guild selections. Also, her kids like them. Dana was last seen romping with her family in Massachusetts. If you need to report her for excessive romping or if you want to know more, head to danaalisonlevy.com or follower her on Twitter at @danaalisonlevy.