Margaret is tired of everything always changing. Middle school has gone from bad to worse. Her best friend is becoming a stranger. And her family—well, it’s not even a family anymore.
So Margaret is running away to Foreverland, her favorite amusement park. Hiding out there is trickier than she expects–until she meets Jaime, a thrill-seeking, fast-thinking runaway who teaches Margaret how to stay one step ahead of the captain of security.
At first, this after-hours, all-access pass to the park is a dream come true: sleepovers in the Haunted House, nonstop junk food, and an unlimited ticket to ride. But as the runaways learn each other’s secrets, they must face the reasons they left their normal lives behind. With the Captain closing in and Jaime’s future on the line, can Margaret finally take control?
As of now, an amusement park is the number one best runaway destination I’ve found in literature so far. Second best runaway destination is IKEA. (Check out my One Mixed-Up Night review to learn why).
I read this book during the 2020 pandemic and it made me miss Disneyland even more than I already did. I’m thrilled that Disneyland and Disney California are back open. I went to Disney California a couple of days ago and it was so much fun. A bit overwhelming but fun.
I emphasize with Margaret. I was a lot like her when I was her age. Anxious, scared, constantly fighting the urge to bolt out of fear. Unless you are someone who is full of anxiety, you won’t fully understand Margaret’s mindset.
I’m pretty sure everyone has wanted to run away at some point in their young life. There were a few times as a kid that I wanted to run away. Not away from home exactly, more away from everything that scared and annoyed me. So mostly anything that related to school.
The descriptions of all the junk food in this book made me so hungry. I got a huge crazing for cheeseburgers, French fries and soft serve ice cream.
I didn’t like how the security captain was made out to be the bad guy. Sure, he’s a bit high strung but he was just doing his job.
One concept that bothered me was how everyone is so befuddled with Margaret’s fear of rollercoasters. Is not wanting to ride a rollercoaster really that weird? I didn’t like rollercoasters as a kid either. Everyone screaming around me was unbearable. I got better over time and I actually started to enjoy riding them. But unless I’m completely strapped in with one of those over the head things, I feel like I’m going to fly out. Bottomline, don’t force your kid or anyone to ride a rollercoaster if they really don’t want to. And don’t let anyone guilt you into riding a rollercoaster or into doing anything if you are not comfortable with it.
I enjoyed Margaret’s acrostic poems that are embedded throughout the story. For those of you who don’t know an acrostic poem is a poem of words or phrases that describes a topic word. The topic word is written vertically, and each line of the poem starts with the letters of the topic word. Here’s an example:
Good flavors that I am dying to