Cat is all set to spend three weeks in Atlanta with her best friend Rishi. Unfortunately, plans change and she finds herself in North Carolina visiting grandparents she has never met. Cat and her brother Chicken have a special bond. It seems like only Cat can calm Chicken down or understand him. Mom is teaching a class and is always busy writing the Caterpillar and Chicken books. While on Gingerbread Island with Lily and Macon (the grandparents), Cat learns that she can rely on other people to help out with Chicken and that she doesn't always have to be the responsible one. She is allowed to just be a kid and to get to know her grandparents.
Even though Mom dropped them off with Lily and Macon, she still has lots of hard feelings towards them (Macon especially). That clouds Cat's opinion for a little while, but then she starts taking morning walks with Macon and he teaches her to fish and she sees that Lily can help with Chicken. Now Cat is thinking about how unfair it is that she is always the one taking care of Chicken at home while mom is working. She is able to make friends and do things she wants to do for the first time on the island and she finds she likes it. Now she just has to convince mom that things need to change and that they should have Lily and Macon in their lives.