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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  2,663 ratings  ·  358 reviews
"It's a cold, hard, cruel fact that my mother loved heroin more than she loved me."

Holly is in her fifth foster home in two years and she's had enough. She's run away before and always been caught quickly. But she's older and wiser now--she's twelve--and this time she gets away clean.

Through tough and tender and angry and funny journal entries, Holly spills out her story.
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published September 12th 2006 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
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This book seemed to take me in and I just became one with the world of Holly.
At first, I was totally disgusted with her and her stupid 'I hate writing' blah blah blah. But then, just about when I was going to set this down, she gave on hints of her home life. Her life with the Benders.

While she ran away and kept the journal, I could just imagine all the different situations she was put in. Especially the 'hobo network' scenes and the scenes where she lived with hobos and scenes where she lived w
I really liked this book beacuse the reader was able to get into the mind of character. The author does this well by using 1st person narrative. I also like that the book was written in diary from because it made me fee closer to the character. I found it interestng how the chracter refered to herself as a sea gypse(sp?) instead of a homeless girl. In the book the character also says how much he hates doing certain things when she really likes them such as writing poetry. The character also seem ...more
Joe B.
Joe Bricker
Reading/L.A. Book Review 8
28 January 2011
Follow The Yellow Brick Road
“It’s never too late- in fiction or in life- to revise.” This quote from Nancy Thayer describes this book. In Runaway, by Wendelin Van Draanen, Holley Janquel is a runaway. A minor who has left the care of an adult. In the beginning of this realistic fiction book, Holly receives a journal from her teacher, Ms. Leone, who instructs her to write down her feelings. Holly’s mother and father have d
Harold Ogle
Runaway is another book picked for me at random at the library by my daughter. More often than not, she comes up with good stuff. That's probably a testament as much to the librarians as it is to my daughter, but still...

Runaway is a sequel, of sorts, to another book that Van Draanen wrote (Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy), but in no way is it necessary to have read that first. In fact, I'd recommend against reading Sammy Keyes first, as knowing what happens in that book would be spoilers f
Runaway By: Wenddelin Van Draanen.
This story is about a foster girl, she lives with her foster parents who make her sleep in the laundry room when shes a "bad girl"
After her foster dad shoves her head in the toilet and flushes several times, shes had enough.
She runaway.
Read this book to find out the type of horror and fear she faces.
All she wants is a good family and house to love and live in.
Is that too much to ask?
I guess it is when your mother died bc of heroin.
Read this book to find out if
Olivia Gonzales
Olivia Gonzales
p.1 Waxman

Goodreads Review no. 2 - Runaway

Runaway by Wendelin Van Draanen is the powerful story of a young girl named Holly Janquell who has been deemed “unadoptable” and constantly runs away from her foster homes. When she faces some cruel events in one of them, she runs away to the western beaches, calling herself a “sea gypsy” as she dislikes the word homeless.
Throughout all of her experiences Holly keeps a journal that her teacher told her to write in at the beginning of th
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Twelve year-old's Holly's life is horrific, to say the least. Her father died before she was born. Her mother was a drug addict who OD'd. Her current set of step parents routinely lock her in the basement and flush her head in the toilet. And she can deal with all of that, but when her stepfather refuses to stop touching her, she decides to runaway, this time for good. She travels across the country, stowing away in bus cargo holds and trains, sleeping in parks, libraries and shelters, hoping to ...more
The main reason why i chose this book is becuase it is in a journaling formal i feel reading book in this kind of format are really really intresting. this book was amazing and really gave me a differnt view on homeless people becuase i never had mercey for them i just felt that there were all drunks and drug addicts and this book really changed my thinking for the good. the main character is a bitter teenager but theres a reason for that she has been in and out of abusive homes shes practicly b ...more
Elma Radoncic
This book was about how a young girl is being mistreated by her foster parents. She lives with a creepy old perverted freak, and a women who thinks that she is from a juvenile delinquency. She sleeps on a blanket on the floor, and she ha no pillow, no bed, and no freedom to do anything. Her foster parents treat like a stranger, not even strangers, because they don't even give her enough food to eat.And poor Holly is being accused of activities that she didn't do. Holly had enough, She is going ...more
I picked up Wendelin Van Draanen's Runaway because it's a spin-off from her Sammy Keyes mystery series. (I may have mentioned the Sammy Keyes series once or twice on Goodreads--or 5,000 times. Runaway tells the backstory of a homeless girl named Holly that Sammy meets in Book #3, Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy. After Book #3, Holly becomes a regular character in the series.)

At first the writing in Runaway didn't appeal to me. The story is told in diary form, with Holly writing entries in a
The book "Runaway" by Wendelin Van Draanen is written in the format of journal entries. These entries are written by an orphan, Holly. Her foster parents abuses her by locking her in the laundry room for days and sticking her head in the toilet when she tries to defend herself. When Holly can no longer take the abuse, she runs away. Throughout this book, Holly writes about how and what she does to survive being homeless or what she calls "being a gypsy".
This book was great. It showed me what hom
Dec 21, 2008 ™yourbeautifulnightmaree™ rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Deffinentaly 10 or older
this is one of my ALL-TMIE favorite books.
this book is about a girl, and she is kinda of lost in the world, and has no say what-so-ever of where she is. She is in foster care, but her "care-takers" are not the best. They are mean, and brutl to her. She ends up running away from them , and meeting all sorts of people, and running into all sortds of trouble. This book taught me so much becuase, this young girl was living in a box, but she still had hope, and she didnt complain, sometmies she has t
Dec 09, 2011 Yuseyz rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: girls, poetry lovers, sammy keyes fans
Recommended to Yuseyz by: My BFF and sammt keyes fan
Runaway by Wendelin van Draanen, is about one of the supporting characters in Sammy Keyes. Holly. She is introduced in the third book, Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy. I really enjoyed her character and wanted to read more about her so i read Runaway. I loved her poetry. What really interested me was that the author stowed away and 'researched' while writing her book. Talk about first-hand experience!
My eighth grader read this book from the school library, and recommended it to me. I always enjoy reading books my girls enjoy, as it helps give me insight into their inner lives. I'd recently recommended a book to her, and she didn't like it -- hmmmm .... observations made, more learned :)

Anyway, "Runaway" to Wendelin Van Draanen is not a "light" book. It's about Holly, a homeless 12-year-old (yeah, I know. The beginning of this month was pretty pitiful-tween heavy with my reading!).

"It's a col
heartbreaking and heartwarming at the same time
The story of how Holly escapes her foster home in pursue of herself and of her dreams, all her adventures filled with courage and raw feelings. She slowly learns how to trust again until she is able to meet a friend that will help her find the meaning of a true home and belonging
Cassie Felix
All-time favorite book from my childhood. I read this when I was in fourth grade and connected to Holly on a personal level so deep it was crazy. The very first book I purchased with my own money and definitely not a book I regret picking up. I can recite most of it from memory now, but I still reread it whenever I need to get out of a reading slump. It always helps. Holly's story is powerful, and her narration is brutal but honest and it is something I always loved about her character. Plus, th ...more
Sarah Alobaid
So when i decided to read this, it was one of those if-i-don't-pick-it-up-now-i'll-probably-never-will kind of book. I went into it thinking it would be some lame middle-school book that i needed to get off my tbr bookshelf. But oh my God am i glad i picked it up!! This is EXACTLY why i love books, it's the POSSIBILITY! The POTENTIAL that lies between the front and the back pages! It's going into a book expecting something completely different and then being BLOWN-AWAY. It's when you finish a bo ...more
Barton Hills Sixth Grade
this book is awesome with sad parts but when you get further into the book it makes you think how smart she is its a really good book:ozzy

I absolutely LOVED this book. It was a book that could not have been better written without changing the plot. I have not met a single person that does not like this book. It’s about a girl whose mom died and she never saw her dad so she was given to several families to grow up but she is so bad they all gave her back. So now she lives with this really mean fa
Sophia Regan
This book was so good, I couldn't put it down! I would recommend it somebody who loves sad and depressing books, touching the topics. Of neglect and abuse
Billie Snyper plunkett
Daughter and I both read this book! Great lesson on life and appreciation!
Mr. Z
Holly is a bitter and abused teenager on the run from a life lacking loving parents and full of neglect. Her mother was an unfortunate victim of drugs, but even more unfortunate has been the ill effects her mother's absence has created in Holly's life.

I'm sure there are many teenagers out there who feel like running away. Do you really want to know what it's like? If so, you can follow Holly's story. I think you'll find that no matter how bad you think you have it at home, it could be worse. You
Laurysa Duran
Jan 20, 2009 Laurysa Duran rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: girls
Recommended to Laurysa Duran by: Woolven
Upon completing your book, write a review on goodreads that has the following components:
1) An accurate and brief (3-4 sentences) summary of the conflict of the story including the main character(s) role in the conflict. In the case of your summary, more is not better; concise word choice requires thought and precision. Summaries more than 4 sentences may bump you into the "B" category. Choose your words wisely.
2) An explanation (1 sentence) of the theme(s) you notice in the b
This story is VERY good so far! It talks about a girl who's mother has passed away and has to go to foster care. Even though she hates it..she has to live with it. She runs away because she doesn't like her life her foster parents.[She has problems] Later you will realize where she goes and why. oh and by the way...the story is written as her journal.
She is now in Califronia and she's trying to survive her life. She calls herself a "gypsy" and is going around, trying to live her life to the fu
I was wondering whether I should give this book 3 or 4 stars. I thought four stars was good because it had great voice, good character, the plot was good, staying intrested was okay, and overall was great. I didn't realize untill the end that this book is sort of like a sequel to Sisters of Mercy. So maybe I should read that. I hope it will be worth it though. I found it intresting that the author experienced some things to make this book be more realistic. Example: She went camping without any ...more
Chelsea W
Can you imagine being alone and homeless at age 12 or 13? Well that is exactly what my book “Runaway” by Wendilin Van Draanen is about. I personally liked the book. It held my attention very well.
In the story there is a teenage girl named Holly. She is alone in a big world, but it didn’t start out that way. When she was little Holly lived happily with her mother and her father. When her father died in a tragic accident, it was just her and her mother. That’s when things started going downhill.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I picked this novel up at Border Books recent liquidation sale in South Austin. Although this is a young adult novel, the story line looked interesting. I did find it intriguing. In the beginning of the story, 12-year-old Holly is living unhappily with a foster family. They treat her badly and she escapes. As Holly manages to survive on her own, we learn more about her as she writes honestly in her journal about her mother's drug addiction. For some time, they were moving around to different apa ...more
Wendelin Van Draanen’s Runaway is a story about Holly Janquell, a 12-year-old runaway. The delivery of the story is in a journaling mode as writing is an advice of Ms. Leone, her teacher. She chronicles her life starting from her struggles at her current foster home and her disgust with Ms. Leone, her schoolmates and writing poetry. When she runaway from the Benders, she finally decides that she will really escape this time from foster homes, from social services and from the people who ‘judge’ ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Van Draanen was born in Chicago, Illinois. One of her early influences was Dandelion Wine . According to the author, the book was "about the magic of growing up and [it] reminded me of all the wonderful mischief my brothers and I got into when we were young." Bradbury's work inspired Van Draanen to write How I Survived Being a Girl, which was published by HarperCollins in 1997. Other early influen ...more
More about Wendelin Van Draanen...
Flipped The Running Dream Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy (Sammy Keyes, #3) Sammy Keyes and the Skeleton Man (Sammy Keyes, #2)

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“Sometimes I get so caught up in my own problems that I forget how amazing the world is.” 113 likes
“I miss school.
What’s wrong with me?”
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