This is one of my all-time favorites because of the beautiful writing, entertaining characters, and profound life lessons. After her mother leaves, Salamanca Hiddle has a hard time adjusting to life. Her Gram and Gramps take her on a road trip across the country to follow in her mother's footsteps. As they travel, Sal entertains her grandparents with stories from her previous school year. Current stories are mixed with memories, all full of adventure, humor, and some sadness. During their physical journey as well as their journey through Sal's stories, Sal and her grandparents learn powerful lessons about themselves and others around them.
Sharon Creech creates wonderful characters and dialogue that are entertaining to young readers and adults. I've loved reading this one on my own, out loud with my husband, and for a mother / daughter book group with my 9-year-old daughter. It makes me laugh and cry every time.