|image from LibraryThing|
This is a great read! What a wonderful heroine and what an awful mom! Addie is a sweet 12-year old left in a ratty old trailer with her bipolar Mommers. Dwight her step dad has had enough of Mommers' unwillingness to change and has had to divorce her...but he was not able to keep Addie and her step sisters together since he was not Addie's real dad. So, Addie does what she always does and adapts - to the deserted parking lot surrounding her trailer, to Soula the owner of the gas station on the corner and most of all to hiding Mommers disappearances from Dwight and Grandio, her dead father's dad.
Addie believes she doesn't have the 'love of learning' that her little sisters and mom have and that's why school is so difficult for her. But, with the help of her Vocabulary book, her growing musical talent her honest and open personality - she makes the transition to her new school easily...and even makes the orchestra.
But, Addie's life is measured out in the number of meals she can eek from her Mommers infrequent grocery stops and even more infrequent stays at the trailer. She longs to belong to someone other than her hamster, Piccolo. Then...tragedy strikes.
This is a poignant story about the struggles of a child shouldering the responsibilities and heartache of a parent's mental illness. You want life to improve for Addie - but you walk with her through the understanding that that probably means she can't be with Mommers...