Most grandmothers look back. Tabitha, ""call me Grandma,"" Brown, not only looks to the future; she predicts it with a sagacity that puts Nostradamus to shame. At sixty-six, she set out with her family from Missouri on the grueling trip to Oregon. In 1846, when they didn't even have decent brakes on wagons, Grandma foresees the automated, mobilized society. While looking at the evening star, she murmurs, just think, someday man will fly to the stars; crossing the mighty rivers, she predicts suspension bridges; choking on dust, sees modern highways. All this embarrasses her family and annoys the reader. Grandma Brown is a very nice person; her family are very nice people; the people she meets on the trip are very nice. There are no villains, and the only semi-not-nice people are converted to paragons in a matter of hours by Grandma's charms. Aside from the age at which Grandma made the trip, her sole claim to historical treatment is that she was the original house-mother at what is now Pacific University. As biography, the book is meaningless; as fiction it is very dull.