Lorelei has never gone beyond the Watchers or the road, the river or the row of prickly pears. Even when she hides in the forest when Mama’s sickness comes on too strong, she stays in the bounds that Mama drew for her as soon as she was old enough to toddle to the outhouse and up the trail to set snares.
For twelve years, she’s known where she can go and where she must not go. But when Mama doesn’t come back from a shopping trip to town and fall turns the leaves of the trees that survived the storm to deep gold and red, she worries she might have to head to Portal or Paradise. She worries what Mama will do if she finds out, and she worries that Pup, the coyote pup she rescued from the river, won’t have enough to eat over the winter unless she makes the trip. Is the world outside as fearsome as Mama always claimed or is it the joy-filled place that Ella and Louie sometimes make it seem?