Runner follows Haas, an eighteen-year-old girl raised by a single father in Missouri. After growing up in an isolated town composed of mostly German immigrant families, she is at a juncture in her life where she is unsure of the life that has been set out for her: namely to be a bride. When tragedy strikes at home, she is left to bury her father alone. In order to meet the terms of his will, she must bring him across the region, to Northern Illinois, next to the plot where her mother lay. It is here that she learns of a life much different than her own: her mother’s. And it is here, at a boarding house built for workers of a nearby mill, where she meets Will. A story of two strangers encountering, changing, and ultimately leaving one another.