A thin but sympathetically tuned-in account of an only child's day at the fair with a more casual, large family. Nine-year-old Laura is delighted to be going with her friend Mary Denton, Mary's parents, and the other five Denton children; but she's a bit taken aback by the rough-and-tumble in the car and the way everyone rushes off when they arrive at the fair. And she is terrified when she is separated from Mary, just minutes after basking happily at the 4H crafts barn where her own picture of a horse has won a blue ribbon. Now she dashes frantically about after Mary or any Denton she might espy--riding the Ferris wheel for a better view and nearly falling when the bar to her seat gives way; trying to phone her mother and losing all her change because she doesn't have quite enough for the call; rushing into the fun house on a false lead and falling in that dizzying maze of illusion; finally parking herself near Mary's craft entry, a wildflower collection, when she realizes that Mary will be coming to take it home at the end of the day. Mary does, and it's ""almost like magic"" the way each of the Denton kids shows up at the gate right on time. Riding home, they all exchange reports, and various Dentons tell Laura that they saw her at various stages of her search. Their concluding remarks are a bit pat, but the search is involving and Laura's own sensible solution is reinforcing at its level.