by Jeff Kinney
The funniest times and most memorable times any family can spend are road trips gone wrong, horrible vacations and tragic yet hilarious family reunions. No matter how well planned, no matter the amount of hope going into a trip, no matter the careful list making of the mother or father, everything that can go wrong usually does.
Greg Heffley's problem is that his mother puts her faith in "Family Frolic" magazine, a colorful if untrue portrait of how honky dory every family moment can be if only you follow the Family Frolic way. Greg's mom lives and breathes this magazine and somehow thinks that through magic the Heffleys can become the perfect Family Frolic family. She decides that a well-planned family road trip is just what her family needs to be the ideal American family, one that she aspires to be.
Greg's father decides that his old wreck of a boat--complete with a hole in its hull--should be towed behind them the entire trip. Somehow, again by magic or wishful thinking or both, the boat will be seaworthy. The family stashes all their extra vacation junk in the boat.
Greg's mom decrees that the family should play a game called Alphabet Groceries, a game she read about in, yep, you guessed it, Family Frolic. Each player will say the letter of the alphabet and then something they could buy in the store that begins with that letter. Obviously, the first choice is "A" and "apple." Next, it's Rodrick's turn. He says he can't think of anything that starts with a "B," so he's out. Greg knows that Rodrick is playing dumb--maybe for the first time of his life. Greg later relates a story showing Rodrick's intelligence. When he was supposed to read Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings for a school assignment, Rodrick realizes he'll never read it, so he rents the video "Lords of the Ring," a pro wrestling video! Imagine that book report!
The family has car trouble, hotel trouble, pig trouble, county fair trouble, swimming pool trouble, and road trouble before it's all over. This edition of Wimpy Kid is way more fun than earlier ones. The Long Haul is the real deal--this is the best book of the entire series. Buy this book immediately! Buy this book for any kid of any age. It's a treasure.
Highly, highly recommended for ALL ages!
FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.
This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)