Published by HMH Books for Young Readers
Summary: Max is surprised when his mom tells him they are going to drive to a family reunion to celebrate his great-great-aunt’s 100th birthday. He’s in the middle of a book report on explorer Ernest Shackleton, so he starts incorporating what he’s learned about exploration into the road trip. This has a few unfortunate consequences, like bringing a collapsible fishing pole instead of clean clothes, but Max is undaunted as he and his mom make their way from Michigan to an amusement park in Pennsylvania. There are many unfamiliar relatives there, but Max finds some cousins to pal around with, and has a pretty good adventure at the park. By the end of the weekend, he has learned a little more about his extended family, his own (divorced) parents, and himself . 160 pages; grades 2-4.
Pros: The second book about Max shows him continuing to adjust to his new family dynamics (in the first book learned to enjoy spending weekends with his dad at his new apartment). His mom is also learning to do things on her own, and their ups and downs make for a realistic story full of gentle humor and love.
Cons: Loved the first book, but no matter how much I’ve book talked it, it never seems to be very popular at my library.