The story takes place in the small town of Madison, Nevada where there is a well kept secret. Everyone who lives in Madison gets to go into a cave on their 18th birthday and make a wish that is guaranteed to come true. The story is told in first person by the main character Eldon as he counts down the days till his wish day. Some other important characters are Norie, Merrill, Abby, JP and Pete.
Eldon is working at the gas station filling up a car's tank. He goes to go introduce himself. He goes to shake the driver's hand but instead of letting go Abby's grip tightens and she pulls Eldon close to the car. She starts to talk in a low vocie and and asks if any mysterious things happen in Madison. Eldon pulls his hand away and asks what she's talking about. She replies "I wish I could exactly say." Emphasizing the word wish. Eldon continues to say how boring Madison is and then finishes filling up the tank right before she leaves she grabs his hand and writes her phone number on it.
I wished to end wishing!
Eldon decides to call the phone number the girl wrote on his hand and break the number one rule in Madison keeping wishing a secret. He meets up with them and tells them everything. When they start to question it he decides that he wants to break into the wishing cave with them and let them wish to see if their wishes will come true. Eldon Abby and Jp break through the metal bars on the cave and go into the cave, Pete stays outside as a look out.
I wish to be the best football player in Madison!
I wish to be alone!
Before Eldon could bring Abby and JP to the part of the cave you make your wish the cops and the mayor showed up. They separated Eldon from Abby and JP and brought him to the station to investigate. The mayor started asking Eldon all type of questions. Soon he decided that as his punishment Eldon would not be able to make his wish. Eldon was very happy because he had no idea what to wish for and it was just stressing him out. In his mind whatever he wished for he would regret later just like most of the town.
When Eldon first got his wish taken away he was relived but after having some time to think he realized he wanted to wish. Eldon, Norie and Merrill all came up with a plan to distract everyone so Eldon could sneak into the cave and make his wish. He wouldn't tell Merrill or Norie what he was wishing for though because he didn't want to get talked out of it. Once everyone got word that he was sneaking into the cave they went to stop him but it was to late he had already made his wish. His wish was to end wishing.
I wish for basketball shoes!
The theme of the book is to be careful what you wish for. Above are some wishes people made in the book that they regretted later on.