Part One, Chapters 7–8

Summary Part One, Chapters 7–8

At the same time, however, Homecoming embodies characteristics of an adventure/accomplishment romance, in which the protagonist is separated from family or loved ones in the form of some sort of quest. The protagonist faces a test or series of tests of courage, and finally is reunited with friends and family in a slightly different role, after being transformed by the trials he or she endured. Dicey's journey clearly represents a drastic separation from her childhood family, as first her father and then her mother abandoned her, and she faces an almost constant series of trials along the way—she must buy food, earn money, avoid the police, decide whom to trust and whom to avoid, and assess the health and mental well-being of her siblings. The novel's title itself suggests the resolution and reunion that will occur at when Dicey reaches the end of her journey, but the realism that characterizes the plot suggests that part of Dicey's homecoming will have to do with her ability to revise her understanding of both family and home.