E. L. Konigsburg's tale is sweet, and short enough not to strain the reader's credibility. The siblings' tiffs are adorable.
- Claudia knew that she could never pull off the old-fashioned kind of running away. That is, running away in the heat of anger with a knapsack on her pack. She didn't like discomfort; even picnics were untidy and inconvenient: all those insects and the sun melting the icing on the cupcakes. Therefore, she decided that her leaving home would not be just running from somewhere but would be running to somewhere.
- Jamie liked perspiration, a little bit of dirt, and complications.
- "I doubt that. Who would drop a whole candy bar and not know it? That's like leaving a statue in a taxi".
- What happened was: they became a team, a family of two. There had been times before they ran away when they acted like a team, but those were very different from feeling like a team. Becoming a team didn't mean the end of their arguments. But it did mean that the arguments became a part of the adventure, became discussions not threats. To an outsider the arguments would appear to be the same because feeling like part of a team is something that happens invisibly. You might call it caring. You could even call it love. And it is very rarely, indeed, that it happens to two people at the same time-- especially a brother and a sister who had always spent more time with activities than they had with each other.
- Happiness is excitement that has found a settling down place, but there is always a little corner that keeps flapping around.
- I think you should learn, of course, and some days you must learn a great deal. But you should also have days when you allow what is already in you to swell up inside of you until it touches everything. And you can feel it inside of you. If you never take time out to let that happen, then you accumulate facts, and they begin to rattle around inside of you. You can make noise with them, but never really feel anything with them. It's hollow.
- Secrets are the kind of adventure she needs. Secrets are safe, and they do much to make you different. On the inside where it counts.
- Flattery is as important a machine as the lever, isn't it, Saxonberg? Give it a proper place to rest, and it can move the world.