Study Guide

M.C. Higgins, the Great Chapter 13

By Virginia Hamilton

Chapter 13

  • It's the evening and James Lewis is back.
  • M.C. tells him to get his tape recorder out because Banina's in the hills, yodeling and heading home.
  • Too bad James doesn't have any tapes on him, which upsets M.C.
  • When Banina gets to the house, the kids jump all over her; M.C. notes that his family's closer than the Killburns.
  • They're about to head in for dinner, when Banina notices James. Why is James there anyway?
  • He's giving her a tape with her voice on it.
  • Banina invites him to stay, but he wants to leave to record another family.
  • He and M.C. walk down the mountain, at which point James apologizes to M.C—he knows that M.C. wanted him to get them off the mountain, but he tells M.C. that he's just a collector.
  • Plus, Banina isn't the kind of talent for the stage. James thinks the stage would change her—you know, glitz her up and take away her natural appeal.
  • He goes on to tell M.C. that M.C. will get out because what Jones is doing is just plain ignorant.
  • Bad idea… M.C. is completely offended. And who can blame him? James just called his dad ignorant.
  • So M.C. turns back and leaves James behind.
  • Back at the house, everyone's listening to the tape.
  • M.C. doesn't let on that James won't be starting Banina's recording career; in fact, he tells them that James will be back to get Banina soon.
  • But Jones doesn't believe him and says he thinks James won't be back again.
  • Maybe Jones knows more than he lets on.
  • They all start singing the ring song (Banina calls out each kid's name and the song goes around and around).
  • Then they get ready for dinner. But M.C. doesn't want to eat—he wants to see if he can find Lurhetta and lead her back for dinner.
  • But Banina won't let him go.
  • So they eat.
  • Afterward, M.C. waits for Lurhetta outside; he's nervous that she won't make it to his house because a storm is coming.
  • Eventually he goes back into his cave-room and waits for her.
  • He ends up falling asleep and dreaming.

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