In fifteen-year-old Alyssa Bondar's Russian-Jewish culture, having a few drinks is as traditional as blinchiki and piroshki. So when her mom's midday cocktails turn into an all-day happy hour, it seems like Alyssa's the only one who notices—or cares. Her dad is steeped in the nightly news—and denial—and her best friend Lana is too busy trashing their shared Russian heritage so she can be popular.
Alyssa would rather focus on cross-country meets and her first kiss with her running partner, Keith, but someone has to clean up her mom's mess. But who will be there to catch Alyssa when her mom's next fall off the wagon threatens to drag her down, too?
I think that everyone has secrets that stays at home and they are never talked about. The hell that Alyssa is living in, is realistic and sad at the same time. Alyssa was an amazing girl that realized that she didn't ever have to give up and that she could become more strong. Lana was an amazing best friend at the beginning, but she slowly gave up on who she was and became surrounded into the depths of the popular crowd. Alyssa luckily finds Keith. He understands what she is dealing with and has issues inside of his family too. The plot followed a realistic story and while the ending was open ending, I enjoyed it. It showed that the characters were trying to find a solution for change. Gelbwasser is a fantastic writer. She creates a realistic story with complex and fantastic characters