"How about a story? Spin us a yarn."
Instantly, Phoebe Winterbottom came to mind. "I could tell you an extensively strange story," I warned.
"Oh, good!" Gram said. "Delicious!"
And that is how I happened to tell them about Phoebe, her disappearing mother, and the lunatic.
As Sal entertains her grandparents with Phoebe's outrageous story, her own story begins to unfoldthe story of a thirteen-year-old girl whose only wish is to be reunited with her missing mother.
In her own award-winning style, Sharon Creech intricately weaves together two tales, one funny, one bittersweet, to create a heartwarming, compelling, and utterly moving story of love, loss, and the complexity of human emotion.
Salamanca Tree Hiddle, 13, believes her mother will return before the tulips bloom. During a car trip from Ohio to Idaho with her grandparents, true originals, Sal relates all that has happened the past year after her mother's sudden departure from home. A story within a story, Sal tells about Phoebe Winterbottom, her charismatic friend, who exaggerates, who believes she is being stalked by a "lunatic," who avoids cholesterol, unless it's her mother's brownies, and whose mother also has left home. Themes of love, life, death, and relationships are at the core of this story which is playful, imaginative, and satisfying. Awarded the 1995 Newbery Medal.