rating: 4 of 5 stars
Perhaps I've got abandonment issues, or perhaps it's the phase of the moon - whatever the reason, this book made me cry. That's an automatic Four Stars.
Addie ("Oddie" to a younger sister) lives with Mommers, who seems to have undiagnosed manic-depression. Mommers goes from All to Nothing, and in the process gets boyfriends, jobs, stocks the pantry, cooks, stays on the Internet all hours... and then crashes and stays in bed all day and can't get it together. Her two youngest were removed to their father's care, but Addie's father is dead and she's 12, so she's staying with Mommers in a trailer at an semi-desolate corner of Schenectady. Addie's stepfather, Dwight, her sisters (The Littles), a couple of school friends, and the two people in charge of the minimart across the lot from the trailer help Addie feel connected with the world around, particularly as Mommers is in an All phase. And they save her when Mommers deserts her in favor of Peter, "a new job" and a new baby.
Why not five stars? There were times when Addie seemed preternaturally adult (which may be my older eyes looking at the situation), and the plot was, for the most part, one of the tired-and-true ones. However, as I said before, there was enough pathos in the book to bring tears to my eyes.
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