Pictures of Hollis Woods

by Patricia Reilly Giff

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In Pictures of Hollis Woods, Hollis says, "I needed to be cold." Why does she say this?

Hollis Woods says "I needed to be outside, I needed to be cold" because she wants to stop thinking about the Regans, whom she really misses. She figures that if she goes out in the cold, then she won't be able to think of anything but the ice and snow.

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Hollis Woods really misses living with the Regans. But because she convinced herself that she brought them nothing but bad luck, she ran away from their home.

Yet now she's staying at the Regans's summer house; not with the Regans, however, but with Josie. Among other things, this means that Hollis can't get the Regans out of her mind. This is their house, and so inevitably, there are mementos of them everywhere, which only makes Hollis all the more depressed.

To make matters worse, it's Stephen's birthday the following day, and it hurts Hollis to know that she won't be able to spend time with him on this special day. Hollis goes into Stephen's bedroom in the summer house and picks up a photo that reminds her of the time when she and Stephen went out on the river in a rowboat.

Such sentimental reminiscence only adds to the sense of profound sadness that Hollis feels. So she puts on her sweaters, grabs her jacket off the hook and gets ready to go out into the freezing cold. It's hardly a good day for a walk, but Hollis needs to take her mind off the Regans. She figures that if she's cold, she won't be able to think of anything but the ice and snow.

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