Cornelia Thornhill is a shy girl who has gotten use to not talking so much when she does she had a stutter. Her mom one day decided she wanted to go to Las Vegas with her boyfriend. She dropped her off at her at her aunt Agatha's houses. It was an old house. It didn't have a bathroom only an outhouse. Also Agatha only drank tea. She had an apron on with sugar cubes in the pocket that she would munch on.
Agatha and Cornelia got into arguments a lot most were based around cleaning. One day Cornelia was cleaning Agatha's room and she found a box with a babies sweater inside. Agatha came in and she snatched the box from her and yelled at her for cleaning her room with out permission.
They got over there fight and soon after Agatha started cutting down trees from the forest and taking off their bark. Their "neighbor" Bo comes over and helps Agatha with her garden and cutting the trees. Cornelia also teaches Bo how to read. One day Bo told Cornelia if she knew what the trees where for and then she said she should ask.
Agatha had made her a tipi to read so she could have her alone time. Also Cornelia found out that Agatha doesn't know how to read. And so Agatha agreed to learn how to read if Cornelia went to school. She went and when they put her in an average English class she demanded to be put in another class. Cornelia was not shy about this, she didn't back down.
One day Agatha said they should go on a walk to the mountain that Cornelia always wanted to walk to. They came across a cross that said "Grace Thornhill". Agatha said she had a daughter once but she died when she was one from the flu. From that point on they went the the cross and talked to Grace and put flowers. They called it Tending to Grace.
One day Cornelia's mom came. She said that Las Vega wasn't going to well for them, so they were going to Georgia. This time she said Cornelia could come with them. But Cornelia turned her down, she said she was happy staying with Agatha.