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Travels with my family

Marie-Louise Gay and David Homel

Illustrated by Marie-Louise Gay


Ages 7 and up

Groundwood Books, 2006, 0-88899-688-8

  When most of us think about vacations we see ourselves playing on a beach, going to a theme park, or visiting Paris or London. Not so with the parents of this little boy. They avoid popular tourist spots, choosing instead to go to places where no one else goes. On paper this does not sound too bad but in real life it can be very uncomfortable indeed.

  One day the parents decide that the family is going drive to Maine to stay in a rented house by the ocean. They take Miro, the family cat, with them and the poor feline gets carsick during the drive. Also the little brother manages to get stung by a wasp and the children’s bikes fall of the trunk. Then, while Dad is putting the bikes back on the car, Miro escapes. This is only the beginning of what turns out to be memorable holiday.

  After a hurricane hits Maine and terrifies everybody very thoroughly, the parents decide to drive south to warmer climes. They end up renting a house on the Georgia coast and, while they are having a pleasant time playing on a small island, the children and their mother learn how quick the tide comes in. The island they have been standing on rapidly begins to shrink in size and they have to swim for the shore as hard as they can before they are swept out to who knows where.

  Anyone who has been on a not-so-successful vacation will really appreciate this funny and wonderfully written collection of stories. In all there are nine tales in the book and they are so well crafted that both children and adults will enjoy reading them. Laugh –out-loud funny scenes will leave readers chuckling and smiling, and Marie-Louise Gay’s delightful illustrations can be found throughout the volume. The details in the stories are so true to life that one cannot help wondering if the authors personally experienced some of the adventures they describe.

Travels with my Family


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