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From The CriticsWhy do some kids have loving families and others do not? That unanswerable question is at the heart of this touching story about a girl named Pearl, whose mother drops her off unannounced to stay with the girl's aunt Ivy. Ivy is everything Pearl's mother Ruby is not: steady, understanding and loving. But both Pearl and Ivy know that Ruby will be back to take her daughter away again. Meanwhile Pearl watches as her new friend Moonpie, a boy with troubles of his own, gets taken permanently under Ivy's wing. Skillfully drawn, sympathetic characters face everyday problems with courage in this fine novel.