Whirligig is a young adult novel. It was written by American author Paul Fleischmann and published in 1998. It tells the story of Brent Bishop who embarks on a journey of atonement across America, installing whirligigs in Maine, Florida, Washington, and California.
In chapter two we meet best friends Alexandra and Stephanie, two eighth-graders who live in Weeksboro, Maine. Alexandra is outgoing, pretty, and has a boyfriend. Stephanie is quieter, plain, and doesn't have a boyfriend. The chapter is written from Stephanie's point-of-view. The conflict in this chapter is that Alexandra thinks that Stephanie should get herself a boyfriend and that she should change herself in order to attract one. But, Stephanie is independent and isn't concerned about getting a boyfriend.
Alexandra takes Stephanie to the whirligig on the cliff which she believes has an energy that can make dreams come true. Alexandra describes a fantasy boyfriend for Stephanie, in the hope that the whirligig will make the fantasy a reality. When Alexandra has finished, they see a young boy standing behind them. Three years later, Stephanie is still in a relationship with the young boy's older brother, Kyle.
The second chapter of Whirligig takes place in Weeksboro, Maine. Alexandra and Steph are eighth graders. Alexandra’s main conflict, so to speak, is that she thinks her friend needs some personal improvement, including the addition of a boyfriend. In spite of the fact that it’s winter and the ground is covered in snow, the two girls trudge out to the cliff where the whirligig stands. Alexandra believes the whirligig holds magical powers, of a sort. She leads Steph through impromptu guided imagery to envision an encounter with a nice French Canadian boy. A real young boy soon shows up. He eventually becomes a friend to the girls, and maybe even a boyfriend to Steph. From this point on, Steph keeps track of the whirligig and paints it whenever needed. Their wish had been granted.