In 11 1/2-year-old Miller's town, the fair is the central event of the kid year.
He's been saving and planning for months, and finally, it's fair time. He and best pal Lewis plan a day of rides, games and fair food and work hard to make his parents believe that he is responsible enough to go without them. But then best-made plans go sadly awry. He accidentally feeds most of his father's pie entry to his 6-year-old sister and her friends. Then his parents suddenly can't take him and won't let him go alone. Miller, despairing, rounds up his sister and her two friends and brings them to the fair, believing he can still manage some time for fun. Miller can fret with the best of worriers. As the day slips away, with no rides, no fabulous fair food and most of his money going to care for the little ones, concern for their safety washes over him as he begins to fully understand the true meaning of responsibility. Accompanied by Dormer's slightly surreal black-and-white illustrations, this winsome effort not only lovingly celebrates the color and magic of the fair, but endearingly depicts the inner landscape of a maturing child encountering his first taste of the adult world.
A cheerful and totally entertaining look at fairs, friendship and the value of family. (Fiction. 8-12)