This book is dull, boring and unexciting. It was one of three choices of compulsory summer reading for 7th graders, and while it was the lesser of the three evils, still it's not a very good book. It's lackluster, the characters are extremely superficial, you never really find out why the main character ran away from home at 6 years old, other than he said he didn't like rules... The dialogue between characters lacks depth, it's especially corny between Christian and Marigold. A 7-year old might find it somewhat appealing, but for a 7th grader it's very dull. If the purpose of making kids read is to teach them to love to read, this book definitely achieves the opposite.