This short story by Maile Meloy, operates with the process of discovering things about ourselves such as our sexuality and where we want to head in life. It is at this crossroad that Sam Turner, the main character, finds herself. In the short story, Sam is forced to see herself and her father in a new light on a float trip where a grown man gives special attention different from other adult attention (p. 2, line 65). "Red from Green" is narrated from Sam's perspective and from a third person's perspective. The story is told in the past tense as if Sam is looking back at the trip "Sam Turner took her last float trip down the river with her father" (p. 1, line 1-2). .
She is fifteen years old, comes from Montana and is about to start her sophomore year. Sam's mother is dead, and therefore Sam lives alone with her father. The two of them has therefore created a strong bond. Sam has been offered a scholarship to a boarding school and because of this strong bond it was difficult for them to talk about. Sam had not decided whether to take it or not, and she was unsure how her father would feel about it "Applying had been her father's idea, but now he looked dismayed every time the subject came up" (p. 1, line 6-7). Sam and her father have been on floating trips like this many times before, but this time her uncle Harry and his client have joined them. Layton, the client, quickly made an impression on her by complimenting her teeth. Sam is not used to compliments like this, and later she wondered about his compliment "And she was wondering if she really had perfect teeth, and if anyone but adults would ever care" (p.2, line 62-63). .
Layton plays a major role in the development of Sam and her father's relationship. Because of him she becomes aware of her own sexuality "His attention was different from other adult attention" (p. 2, line 65). Layton is also the reason why Sam starts to see her father in a different light.