Study Guide

Out of the Dust Chapter 103

By Karen Hesse

Chapter 103

Cut It Deep

  • We're onto Part 8, and you know what that means: It's a new season too. This time, we're hanging out in fall once more—and yes, it's still 1935.
  • Billie Jo and her dad catch a break, and while Doc Rice scolds Daddy for waiting so long to get his skin looked at, he's able to cut the cancer out and there's a good chance that it hasn't spread.
  • Billie Jo speculates that Daddy just didn't care whether he lived or died, and at least death would give him his own way "out of the dust."
  • Billie Jo asks Doc Rice what she can do about her hands. He tells her to quit picking at her skin (it only makes things worse) and to quit letting her hands rest, and start using them. It's by using them that they'll best heal.
  • At home, Billie Jo and Daddy go through the boxes in her closet and keep everything except some broken doll dishes. Daddy tells her that when he was younger, he wasn't sure he wanted to be a farmer and thought about leaving—and when he does, Billie Jo realizes that they have more in common than their appearances and habits, more than she ever imagined.