A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Walk Two Moons is a complex novel of self-discovery in which a 13-year-old girl explores her cultural and personal heritage, and her country, all at once. This Newbery winner is rich and rewarding on many levels, with three generations of memorable characters, relatable families, and a sensitive portrayal of feelings of loss in a girl just approaching adulthood. The most challenging aspects of Walk Two Moons concern tragic events and intense sadness. Sal relates personal stories about her family and friends -- including one drunk-driving accident -- and some events are described in upsetting, gory detail. There's also a bit of tobacco smoking, and some exploratory 13-year-old kissing.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
The Newbery Medal-winning WALK TWO MOONS tells two stories: the one that's happening in the "present" of the book -- Sal's road trip with her grandparents -- and the story Sal tells Gram and Gramps in the car, about her friend Phoebe. As Sal and her grandparents retrace the journey Sal's mom made on her way to Idaho --visiting national landmarks and Native American points of interest -- Sal tells what happened when she moved from her family's farm in Bybanks, Kentucky, to a little suburban house in Euclid, Ohio. That's where Sal met Phoebe and was drawn into some mysterious events involving anonymous notes left on Phoebe's porch and a young man who came looking for Phoebe's mother. By trying to help Phoebe through a family crisis -- made even more dramatic by Phoebe's outrageous theories about kidnapping and murder -- Sal gains a deeper, more peaceful, understanding of her own feelings of loss.
Is it any good?
Sharon Creech tells a complex story within a story, full of dramatic, intersecting events, beautifully articulated feelings, and richly drawn characters. Even mature readers who can predict much about the end of Sal's journey will find plenty of plot surprises. And all readers will be deeply moved by Sal's experiences, and the connections she makes with her family, friends, and her natural world.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about images of Native Americans in the media. How is Sal similar to, or different from, Native American characters in other books you;ve read or movies you've seen?
Which of the secret notes the girls receive do you think contains the most important lesson for Sal, and why?
Look at a road map of the U.S., and try to draw Sal and her grandparents' route. What states, and what landmarks do they visit?
- Author: Sharon Creech
- Genre: Coming of Age
- Topics: Friendship
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication date: June 30, 1994
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 288
- Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Audiobook (abridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Award: Newbery Medal and Honors
- Last updated: May 4, 2021
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