Marmaduke is missing! Once again, Emma has forgotten to put her ferret back in his cage. And with four brothers and sisters and a poodle who chases Marmaduke around the house, Emma finds herself in the middle of this and other family dilemmas. If only she can prove to her parents that she's responsible, then maybe they'll let her join the traveling soccer team. When Annie, the new nanny, arrives, Emma feels she's found someone who's on her side. Annie's the coolest nanny ever, but will Mom and Daddy let her stay? Or will they fire her, as they have so many of the other nannies?
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Emma O'Fallon's parents have hired a new nanny and Emma and her siblings try to convince their parents that while the nanny has made a few mistakes, no one is perfect. Emma has four siblings, a dog, and her beloved ferret, Marmaduke. Marmaduke has a habit of getting out of his cage and Emma's mother is ready to return the ferret to the pet store. Annie, the new nanny from Ireland, helps Emma with her ferret problems and is well liked by all the O'Fallon children. However, there are a few mishaps. For example, Annie manages to get locked out of the house when McClain locks her bedroom door because she refuses to wear more than her bathing suit. In another incident, the children start a fire when they turn on the oven where Annie keeps her passport. These two instances cause Emma's parents to wonder if Annie is responsible enough to watch their children. Emma and her siblings point out that while Annie isn't perfect neither are they. The children are able to convince the parents to let Annie stay and to keep the ferret. The book honestly portrays the realities of children today and illuminates the problems children and families face in today's world. Emma and her siblings are convincing and credible to today's child and therefore would appeal to young children, especially those from big families. The parents and the nanny are realistically portrayed and likeable. Suggested grade level: 3-4.