Scarlett Martin is the third of four children in a family that has a most unusual collective profession. The Martins live in and manage a not-quite-so-posh-anymore hotel in New York City that dates from the 1920s. When Scarlett turns fifteen, she is given charge of one of the hotel's twenty-seven rooms: the Empire Suite. Into this room moves Mrs. Amberson, an aging C-list starlet who has returned to New York to write her memoir.
Soon, Scarlett is taking dictation, running around town with Mrs. Amberson, and getting caught up in her Auntie Mame-meets-Bianca Jagger adventures. In the midst of all this, Scarlett falls in love — or so she thinks — and it takes Mrs. Amberson to help her see the light.
Maureen Johnson's signature wit and unparalleled ability to convey eccentric characters with wry humor has never been stronger.
* "What follows is some utterly winning, madcap Manhattan farce, crafted with a winking, urbane narrative and tight, wry dialogue. Beneath the silvered surface, Johnson delivers a complex sibling relationship. These siblings are bound by tender, poignant connections, all the more real for the absurdity of their circumstances. We can only hope that they, too, return for more intrepid adventures." — Booklist, ** starred review
"Hilariously pointed characterizations and a family future in looming peril drive this over-the-top comedy of conflicting and dramatic personae, all presented with wry New Yorker aplomb." — Horn Book
"...this title does not disappoint. This novel blends sibling rivalry and the importance of family, friendship, and romance into a plot that is charming and well delivered." — School Library Journal