When his mother decides on a whim to be a missionary in
Africa and drags his unwilling father with her, Henry is left in the care of
his Aunts Magnolia and Pigg. Henry’s sure they dislike him and he’s trying to
keep his distance, but that becomes more difficult when Mag decides they should
take a destination-less road trip. Mag, convalescing from an illness that makes
her look like death, is downright crabby. Pigg, tense from driving, is becoming
more assertive and less willing to submit to Mag’s whims. And while they poke
each other, literally, Henry is finding it hard to keep his resolution.
They go to Virginia Beach (it’s too hot); try camping in the
Everglades (Henry accidentally spends four days floating in a swamp); visit
their daddy, Henry’s granddaddy (Henry’s never met him!); and lose Pigg to love
in Oklahoma (what would the radio psychologist Daly Kramer say?) before they
finally receive word that Henry’s parents are coming back and will meet them in
Tulsa to finish the trip with Mag and Henry. But his parents are bickering and
Henry is in despair, until he surrenders to the road and decides to let
whatever happens happen, but to be there in it all.
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