Looking for a place where he and his cat can stay, a Seattle boy treks to San Francisco in this ingenuous cautionary adventure from Kehret (Small Steps, 1996, etc.). Behind in the rent, and with the car about to be repossessed, Spencer's mother decamps in the middle of the night, finding temporary refuge for herself and Spencer across town, at Aunt May's. She tells them that Spencer's cat, Foxey, has to go; desperate to keep him, Spencer forces him into a box and heads for San Francisco on a stolen bike, hoping to find his father. Kehret has an agenda, but she makes her points indirectly: Spencer experiences more discomfort than danger (although he is robbed by other runaways), and acts in ways he knows are wrong, from theft to hitchhiking. Foxey is far more troublesome than the hazards of the trip, and Spencer's efforts to keep his terrified pet from running off come close to mistreatment. They arrive in San Francisco by chance--retired carpenter, Hank Woodworth, pays Spencer's bus fare and takes Foxey in temporarily. Spencer finds his father, and Hank dies, leaving Spencer a college trust fund and ready cash for his mother. It's a distressingly tidy resolution, but Spencer's impulsive escapade may give readers infatuated with the notion of running away some second thoughts.