Sal is a 13 year old country girl who recently moved from BayBanks, Kentucky to Euclid, Ohio. She goes on a road trip with her grandparents to find her mother in time for her moms birthday. Along the way, Sal tells a story in the car about Phoebe a friend she made after she moved. During this journey, Sal learns many things about herself and the relationship between her and Phoebe.


Throughout the novel, the author gives numerous clues leading up to the unexpected ending of the three characters.


The author foreshadows this relationship often throughout the book. When Phoebe and Sal first meet Mike (the lunatic in Phoebes words), comes to Phoebe's front door when they are home alone and says on page #43, "I want to see Mrs. Winterbottom. Is she here or what?" He was described as being very shaky and nervous. This foreshadows because he would be obviously nervous if he's about to meet his real mother. Although at the time we had no idea why he was there. Later, Sal and Phoebe now also had suspicious feeling about Mrs. Cadaver. Phoebe believes she chopped up Mr. Cadaver and buried him underneath a rhododendron bush. Now, Sal and Phoebe both think she has something to do with her moms disappearance. One night they decided to investigate, they found themselves actually breaking in to her house. Mrs. Cadaver was sitting there in the dark. Mrs. Cadaver is actually blind but she senses everything. She didn't even suspect why they let themselves in but they end up talking. Mrs. Cadaver tells Phoebe on page #193, "Oh, Phoebe, I think I met your brother." They find this strange, because she doesn't have a brother. This foreshadows because Mike may have gone to her house to find Mrs. Winterbottom, and probably said why.


This topic is foreshadowed a lot. In the beginning, before Sal left for Lewiston, Idaho with her grandparents, she explained on page #5 how she felt and the reasons why she was going: "1. Gram and Gramps wanted to see Momma, who was resting peacefully. 2. Gram and Gramps knew that I wanted to see Momma, but that I was afraid to. 3. Dad wanted to be alone with Margaret Cadaver. He had already seen Momma, and had not taken me." Here, the author never really said she was dead, instead she foreshadows why they were going. When Sal and her Grandparents were driving, she prays. On page #7, it says, "I prayed that we would not be in an accident (I was terrified of cars and buses) and that we could get there by my mother's birthday--seven days away--and that we would bring her home. Over and over I prayed the same thing." This foreshadows because she explained why she was scared and she mentioned buses and getting in an accident.

While they are still driving, they come upon a twisty and dangerous road. Sal was very nervous and felt quivery. On page #227, she says, "I could see our car bursting through the railing and plunging down the cliff. As we approached each curve, could see us smashing straight on into a truck or camper. Every time I saw a bus, I watched it sway. I watched its tires spin dangerously close to the gravel at the roads edge." The author added this in to foreshadow how dangerous those roads are and how easy it is for a bus to go right over the edge. This is important because that is exactly how her mother died. It is important to get a visual and idea of what this must of looked like and how dangerous that road is as well as the anxiety mixed with the fear of crashing.


In Sioux Falls, Sal, Gram, and Grams all kicked off their shoes and when for a swim in the river. When they were sitting in the shallow water on page #95, "Gram said, "Oh!" and flailed at the water. She reached down and pulled up a snake, she gave Gramps a puzzled look. "It's a water moccasin, isn't it?" The snake slithered and wriggled, strained towards the water. "I do believe it has had a snack out of my leg." She stared at Gramps." This foreshadows her death because that could've been one reason she died later on adding on to her old age. After all the snake turned out to be poisoness too! On page #222, Gram couldn't sleep and Sal asked why. Gram answered, "No," she said, "I didn't feel like sleeping. I can sleep later." This foreshadows because she explained she could sleep later and obviously anyone could sleep later but it seemed like she didn't even care about sleeping. So maybe she did know she had plenty of time to rest, referring to death. Later, at Coeur D'Alene, they drove straight to the hospital again for Gram. On page #256, "Gramps tried to wake Gram when he saw the lake. "Gooseberry?" Gramps said. She slumped sideways on the seat. "Gooseberry?" We later found out that her Grandma actually had a stroke. This passage foreshadows her death because

strokes can be common when you are of old age and possibly be cause of death.


The author foreshadows and gives small hints throughout the book, allowing you to predict the endings of the three characters. This gives the reader the element of suspense about the true identity of Mike, the inevitability death of Sal's mom, and Grams death.