12-year-old Savannah Clarke lives with her sister Faye and parents on a farm in Missouri. But their land’s worn out and her father insists they find new land in California, 2000 miles away. It’s 1850 and the journey will take months in a covered wagon pulled by oxen. Savannah knows her heart and it says “stay.” Stay with her best friend Mark living just a hair’s breadth away, with newborn pigs suckling in the barnyard, and peach trees bursting into bloom come spring. Still, she has no choice; she must go, even though there’s trouble ahead and tragedy and there’s nothing she can do to stop it.