Nina and her mother Joyce never seem to spend very much time in the same place. That was fun when Nina was younger, but lately she's begun to yearn for some time to just make friends and have a life. But the more she yearns for that, the harder it becomes, it it all goes very very badly.
In what is ultimately a very sad book, Ehrlich does a wonderful job of creating characters and situations that we really care about. It's a challenge to generate a place full of memorable and believable characters, and she does so several times in such convincing detail that you feel as much wrenched from the setting as Nina does when they are forced to move again. The ending is a bit weaker, but still quite haunting.