Ann M. Martin explores the delicate bonds of family in her most captivating novel yet.<br />In 1963, Ellie's mother, Doris Day Dingman, was crowned the Bosetti Beauty at Mr. Bosetti's supermarket, Ellie and her best friend were tormented by the popular girls in school. President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, and the Dingmans began to fall apart." So begins 11-yr-old Eleanor Roosevelt Dingman's story. Ellie, who is about to start 6th grade in the small town of Spectacle, NY, is the oldest child in her off-center family. Her father works construction jobs, while her mother, Doris, has only one dream — to become a rich and famous actress. But when that dream leads to Doris's abandonment of the family, it is Ellie who is called upon to take charge.