The plot of any story (typically) begins with the exposition, where the characters and situation or problem are introduced to the readers. In the rising action, a series of events bring the main characters closer to the climax . In the climax of a story, the problem of the...
The plot of any story (typically) begins with the exposition, where the characters and situation or problem are introduced to the readers. In the rising action, a series of events bring the main characters closer to the climax. In the climax of a story, the problem of the story typically comes to a head. In an adventure, the climax can be the hero's most dangerous challenge. In a mystery, it can be a turning point in which the detective figures out who committed a crime and takes off to catch her. After the climax of the story, the falling action of the plot wraps everything up, answering questions and settling the story toward the resolution.
In the rising action of The Face on the Milk Carton, Janie has been gathering more and more evidence that she was kidnapped and is the girl pictured on the milk carton. But over and over again, she can't prove what she believes, or someone tries to talk her out of it. She begins to remember brief moments of her life before she came to be raised by Mr. and Mrs. Johnson. She remembers eating an ice cream sundae and someone telling her they were going for a ride. She remembers having a yellow dog. All of this leads Janie to believe that she really did have another life before the one she remembers with the Johnsons.
The climax comes when Janie and her boyfriend, Reeve, drive to New York and find the address of her birth family in the phone book, and she sees her siblings outside the house. Janie becomes more and more nervous as they drive closer to the house. She begins to ask Reeve what will happen if she tells the Spring family who she is, and she faces the frightening thought that the kind, loving, people she knows as her parents would be arrested for kidnapping. Finally, Janie and Reeve follow the school bus into the Springs' neighborhood. There they see children with red hair—just like Janie's—greeted by their red haired mother at the house, and Janie knows for sure that they are her family.
The resolution of the story comes after Janie accidentally loses the letter she wrote to the Springs, and she tells the Johnsons the whole story. Reeve's sister Lizzie helps her break the news to them. On the last page of the book, Mrs. Johnson calls the phone number for the Springs in New Jersey and hands the phone to Janie. Janie tells the woman who answers, "It's Jennie," ending the Springs search for their missing daughter.