Eleven-year-old Ari used to be the star student in her school - but that was before her mother died, leaving her in the care of her older brother Gage and their strict guardian Janna. When Gage and Janna have one too many fights, Gage takes Ari and moves out, claiming he'll have a job and they'll get their own apartment any day now. But that was months ago. Now they're sleeping at shelters and on friends' couches, and Ari has trouble finishing her homework when she's not even sure how they're going to eat every night. She's as afraid of breaking her last promises to her mother - stay with Gage and get into a middle school for gifted students - as she is that someone will find out she has nowhere to live, and call her by a name she can barely imagine describing her: homeless.
Paper Things is written for an elementary to middle school audience, but its powerful story and clear language make it compelling for adults as well. Its message of understanding and compassion for people in difficult circumstances is profound and important for readers of any age. - Michelle (Sunset)