Book Report on Car Trouble

Book by: Jeanne DuPrau Report By: Serenity Gurtner

Car Trouble




The plot

Exposition- Duff gets a job offer in California

Rising Action-

1.)Duff's car breaks on the high way

2.) His car can't be fixed. He must find a way to California

3.)He found a way with one other men and he is going to CA. They have to stop to drop off a car in St. Louis.

Climax- Duff got stuck in St. Louis with Stu.

Falling Action- He gets on his way.

Resolution- He got to California on time.

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Duff Pringle is heading across the country, aiming for his new job in technology in California's Silicon Valley. His used Ford barely makes it a hundred miles from home before breaking down. He calls a car towing company to come pick him up, and when they get to the repair center, he is told the car would need to stay 3–4 days. Even though Duff has only 2 weeks to get to California, he checks into a motel to wait out the 3–4 days. He soon finds a note asking for someone to drive a car to St. Louis. Duff sends this person an email and gets a reply saying they would drop it off at the motel he was staying at. Duff finds Stu at a restaurant in Chipper Crossing. Stu is a hitchhiker looking to get to California too, and he asks Duff if he could come with him. Despite his appearance and behavior, Duff accepts, and they head to Saint Louis to deliver the car, a Chevy, to a woman named Rosalie Hopgood. There are several characters in this story including Bonnie, an aspiring singer with a con artist for a mother (Bonnie's mom had stolen a lot of money from people and was wanted everywhere); two thugs looking for a trunkfull of cash; and Moony, a terrier dog prone to carsickness.


Car Trouble is placed at/in Duff's parents house, Chipper Crossing, VA, and Silicon Valley CA.

The multiple places in this story show how much trouble Duff was willing to go through to get to California.

Protagonist and Antagonist and Character Traits

Protagonist- Duff Pringle

Trait- Determined


1. In the beginning, his car broke down and he had a choice of replacing the engine, getting a flight to California, or buying a different car.

2. He was determined to find away to get internet so he could find a way.

3. He would not stop looking for away to get to California.

Antagonist- Stu

Trait- Outgoing


1. In the beginning he took straight to Duff.

2. He introduced himself to anybody and everybody.

3. He was very talkative.

Point of View

Car Trouble is in Third Person Limited because the author only lets us know Duff's feelings. In the story the author only lets us know about Duff. He introduces Duff indirectly.


1.) External conflict- Duffs car broke down and he had no way of getting to California

2.) External conflict- The town he is stuck in there was no internet or ways to get a ride.


-Never give up. No matter what happens.

-There is always a was, you just have to hunt for it. Some ways aren't the easiest.

Duff never gave up no matter the crisis he ran into. That proves why the theme, never give up, no matter what happens, fits this book. Also, Duff constantly found away even though it wasn't the easiest. When Duff's car broke he didn't give up on finding a way to CA. he hunted for a way though it wasn't easy. That proves how both themes fit the book.