In chapter eleven, the main character Miranda, goes back to school. When she sees piles of textbooks and utensils she gathers them and takes them home. She no longer wants to go to school and have to suffer trying to act like everything's okay when it's not, so she takes Johnny and Mat some book so that they can also study what they need. Then in chapter twelfth , Miranda and her mother get into it because Miranda wants to eat something so she goes to the pantry and finds chocolate chips, well she eats them.Her mom finds her and tells her that she can't eat for the next two days. Miranda feels bad about what she did. At the end of the chapter Mat comes home from the post office with a letter from Dad and Lisa, this letter made the whole family start to worry, but they tried to tell themselves not to. The thirteenth chapter, starts off when mom hurts her ankle and Miranda has to go find Peter at the hospital, but there was a problem. The guards wouldn't let her in. She sat there and begged and cried and pleaded but they wouldn't either in. Mat comes in and saves the day. They finally get Peter. Miranda ends up cutting moms hair, because she is tired of washing it. Because mom can't, Miranda starts to make visits with Mrs.Nisbet.Chapter fourteen everyone goes to the library except mom because of her ankle. The librarian says that the library will be closing, so they take all the book that they want. Miranda ended up cutting her hair. Mat goes to the post office everyday, he came back and told miranda that he found Megan on the dead list. Megan’s mom was on the list also. When Miranda woke up the next morning she thought about reverend Marshal. She paid him a visit because she thought he would know what happened. He told her that Megan had died from starvation and mer mother had died because she hung herself. Chapter fifteen, Mom fell on her ankle again so they all moved down stairs so that they wouldn't be cold and mom wouldn't be alone.
If I were to make a theme statement for this time period it would, it would probably be, In a time of bad you can't just think of yourself and your wants. Miranda says in chapter fifteen, “So tonight is my last night alone. And my world has gotten even smaller.” Miranda thinks the just because she has to move downstairs with her mom and brothers that her life sucks.Although really they have it better then most of everyone else in the book.
In the novel the story line does reflect gender roles. No matter what the weather is like the male characters are always working outside to make sure that they have enough firewood for the winter. While the females are always inside cleaning or even making dinner. The author makes sure that they distort the differences of females and males. In our society it is clear that the men and women have different roles.