Walk Two Moons does well by its intended audience, young YA readers or older middle readers. For me, it was a little too precious, a little too...childish and "safe." The story's progression, Sal's exploration of her feelings regarding her own mother's leaving in the wake of best friend Phoebe's similar loss, is a little too predictable. Early on, I realized who the lunatic (the young man who lurked briefly in Phoebe's neighborhood) was and saw where that plotline was going. Similarly, it was clear to me that both mothers left their families in the wake of life-changing events, and not because they didn't love their children.
Or maybe it was Sal's old-woman-in-a-child's body internal dialogue, sort of folksy and quaint, but not quite childlike, that kept me from connecting fully to her and the other characters. Also, Phoebe's mother's desire for "respectability" feels a little dated, even for a book published in 1994.
For an older reader, most of the adults' motivations may be too obvious, but Walk Two Moons
is probably a thought-provoking read for younger readers.