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Just Another Day in My Insanely Real Life    by Barbara Dee order for
Just Another Day in My Insanely Real Life
by Barbara Dee
Order:  USA  Can
Margaret K. McElderry, 2006 (2006)
* *   Reviewed by Lyn Seippel

Twelve-year-old Cassie never knew how good she had it. When her dad leaves her mother and moves to Florida, their house, her allowance, and swim team are history. Her mother can't afford the extras. Her old friends begin to leave her out of things since she hasn't the time or money to participate.

While her mother is working long hours every day and never making it home for dinner, the pressure builds on Cassie and her older sister Miranda. While Cassie steps up to her increased responsibilities, Miranda leaves hers for dependable Cassie to do.

Both girls are hurt that their dad left. He phoned weekly in the beginning, but Miranda hung up on him and he stopped calling. Their mother won't say why he left and Cassie is left to wonder what happened and if he'll ever be in touch again. Cassie's responsibilities keep growing. She must take care of her little brother Jackson, worry about meals, grocery shopping, her grades, Jackson's inability to read, and where Miranda is spending all her time. Some of these responsibilities should be Miranda's, but Cassie can't bear to tell her worried mother how bad things are.

Cassie's wry humor - despite the pressure she is under - and the genuine love between the sisters bring this story to life. Is Miranda really the wicked sister she is portrayed to be and is the mother as clueless as she first appears?

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