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Maniac Magee

Maniac Magee


by Jerry Spinelli

Jeffrey Lionel "Maniac" Magee Timeline and Summary

  • Maniac is born in Bridgeport, to "regular" parents, but he's soon orphaned by a tragic trolley accident.
  • After living for eight years with Uncle Dan and Aunt Dot, Maniac runs away and ends up in Two Mills, Pennsylvania.
  • There, he meets Amanda Beale. She takes him home to her family, and they unofficially adopt him.
  • The legend begins and grows: his sports prowess and cool confidence make him famous, and the fact that he's allergic to pizza doesn't hurt.
  • Maniac finally realizes that not everyone loves him living in the East End when an old guy yells at him on the street and someone graffitis the Beales' house.
  • In a desperate attempt to keep him from running off, Amanda convinces Maniac to take on Cobble's Knot.
  • He wins, of course.
  • An act of vandalism lets Maniac know that even the heroism of Cobble's Knot isn't enough to keep people from bothering him.
  • So Maniac takes off again, and moves into the buffalo shed at the zoo.
  • Maniac meets Grayson, park maintenance worker and washed-up minor leaguer.
  • The two move in with each other with family when they most needed it.
  • Grayson dies, leaving Maniac on his own again.
  • Maniac takes off (again) and ends up cold and hopeless at Valley Forge, where he meets Russell and Piper McNab.
  • To prevent them from running away to Mexico he escorts them home and begins a tumultuous period of living at the dirty and hateful McNab house.
  • Maniac escapes from the stress of the McNab's by running: and soon he has a running buddy in his former nemesis Mars Bar.
  • One day Mars and Maniac run into Piper McNab demanding they rescue his brother, stuck on the P&W trolley trestle.
  • Maniac can't do it, so Mars takes care of the boys. Looks like three more people are going to be learning that racism is wrong!
  • Mars later seeks out Maniac to check on him. Maniac refuses to go home with Mars, but later gives in when Amanda comes and demands he come home.