Walk Two Moons Summary: Chapters 1-4

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  • 0:04 Walk Two Moons
  • 0:51 Chapter One Summary
  • 2:10 Chapter Two Summary
  • 2:53 Chapter Three Summary
  • 3:50 Chapter Four Summary
  • 4:40 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Dori Starnes

Dori has taught college and high school English courses, and has Masters degrees in both literature and education.

Salamanca Tree Hiddle is traveling across the country with her grandparents. To pass the time, she tells them a story about her friend, Phoebe. But, behind this story is another: her own. This lesson will cover Chapters 1-4 of 'Walk Two Moons.'

Walk Two Moons

Walk Two Moons is a young adult novel by Sharon Creech, and is narrated in first person through Salamanca Tree Hiddle, better known as Sal. While traveling across the country to Idaho with her grandparents, she tells of her new best friend, Phoebe Winterbottom, while her own story unfolds at the same time.

There are three distinct stories that unfold in this novel. The first story takes place in the present, and is of the teenage Sal taking a road trip across the country to Idaho with her grandparents. As they drive, she tells the story of her and her father's arrival the previous year at their new home in Ohio, and of her friend Phoebe Winterbottom, who she met not long after. Within Phoebe's story is Sal's own story, as well as the story of what happened to cause Sal's mother to leave her and her father, which took place before Sal's move to Ohio.

Chapter One Summary

We are immediately introduced to Sal, who is living with her father in Euclid, Ohio. She's very unhappy about leaving her farm in Bybanks, Kentucky, where she grew up. She tells of when she first arrived in Euclid, which, she says, is flat and boring and has no trees. They live on a street where all the tiny houses look the same, and none have much of a lawn. For a self-professed country-girl, this city is plain torture.

Sal's father has moved them to Ohio to be closer to his friend Margaret Cadaver, who lives in one of these tiny houses. Sal feels a lot of resentment toward Margaret, and worries that she is trying to take the place of her absent mother. When she first meets Margaret, she also happens to notice a face looking out the window of the house next door. We soon learn that this is Phoebe, a girl Sal's age.

The novel temporarily flashes forward a year, to Sal traveling with her grandparents on a six-day road trip to Idaho. While they drive, she tells them the story of Phoebe, which she realizes is similar to her own. She compares Phoebe's story to the plaster wall in her old house; when Sal's mother went away, her father began to chip away at the plaster in their house in Kentucky. When they got the news her mother wasn't coming home, Sal's father chipped more, and discovered an old fireplace behind the wall. Sal sees that Phoebe's story is like that plaster wall: it's covering up her own story.

Chapter Two Summary

Sal tells us how she came to be taking a road trip to Idaho with Gram and Gramps. They're heading to Lewiston, Idaho, to see Sal's Momma, who is ''resting comfortably''. Sal isn't thrilled to be going on this trip, but she knows she has to. Her father has already been to see her Momma, and Sal knows she needs to as well, but she's scared.

Sal's father is glad that she's going with her grandparents, because they always seem to get in trouble on their own. She thinks he really just wants to be alone with Margaret. Sal wants to get to Idaho in time for her mother's birthday, which is seven days from when they start. Gramps asks her to tell a story to help pass the time, so she decides to tell the story of her friend Phoebe. She says the story involves Phoebe's disappearing mother and a lunatic.

Road trip
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Chapter Three Summary

Margaret has been trying to be nice to Sal, but she isn't having any of it. She feels like her mother has been replaced too fast. She won't let Margaret or her father relate the story of how they met. They soon head from Margaret's house to their own new house, which Sal describes as 'Yuck'. They can barely fit their furniture in.

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