For a family with four kids, two dogs, assorted cats, and a constant stream of family and friends dropping by, life in the Austin family home has always been remarkably steady and contented. When a family friend suddenly dies in a plane crash, the Austins open their home to an orphaned girl, Maggy Hamilton. The Austin children—Vicky, John, Suzy, and Rob—do their best to be generous and welcoming to Maggy.
Vicky knows she should feel sorry for Maggy, but having sympathy for Maggy is no easy thing. Maggy is moody and spoiled; she breaks toys, wakes people in the middle of the night screaming, discourages homework, and generally causes chaos in the Austin household. How can one small child disrupt a family of six? Will life ever return to normal?
“A family story that simply doesn’t date, characters ring as true now as I’m sure they ever did.”—Charlotte Jones Voiklis, Granddaughter of Madeleine L’Engle
“Yes, by all means ‘meet the Austins,’ for a nicer family would be hard to find. The book is beautifully written, with integrity and warmth, and young people are bound to identify with the characters, each a person in his own right, and to read absorbed from first page to last. Thoroughly recommended.”—Chicago Tribune
“An unusual book. . . . There are intimate details of home life that everyone will recognize with pleasure; there is great warmth in the family relationship, and it is movingly communicated.”—The New York Times
“Told with warmth and humor, this is a perceptive, forthright story of a loving and likeable family.”—Booklist
“Her books . . . tend to be about the intersection of some fantastic unearthly world and the ordinary world in which we live.”—Daniel Handler (a.k.a. Lemony Snicket)
“. . . [an] ode to faith and family . . .”—Quin Hillyer, American Spectator