“This Would Make a Good Story Someday” a perfect line many of us writers have used over and over again as we think about events in our lives. Well, Dana Alison Levy followed up on it and wrote a humorous family story.
Levy is known for the Family Fletcher series, which I have not read but now want to go back and find. In this new book she takes us on a train ride across the United States with the Johnson- Fischer family and some new and wonderfully funny friends. We follow this train trip through the journal entries of Sara with a few added written pieces from one of her mothers, her older sister and a new “friend” who Sara wants nothing to do with.
We learn about families – the good, the bad and the ugly. We learn about places and fun facts of the United States, we learn about coming of age (the pre teen spot is hard place to be) and most of all we learn about how strangers become friends and family. This book is full of events that become adventures. What else would you expect when you put a group of strong willed people together in a confined space for long periods of time.
We also get a great model for journal writing – since Sara is writing in a required summer journal on their trip. A trip she did not want to go on. One of her mothers is hoping to write a book about this trip as well but it is clear she is having writers block and seeks to get insights and ideas from Sara. Sara is not willing to share and is not at all interesting in being part of a book about her crazy family.
The writing is quick and lively, the jokes and tales are perfect and by the end of the book I wanted to keep riding the rails with this wonderful family. I was ready to find my own train trip.
What a great idea this was for a book! Indeed this did make for a good story!
This would be a good read aloud for early in the year as you are starting journal writing and discussing how authors write about the world around them.
Enjoy this fun read!