Aislinn's name is the Old Irish word for dream. Her life is anything but. It's summer and Aislinn has hopes of spending it with her best friend swimming and meeting a boy named Mike and doing normal girl things. At twelve, going on thirteen, she is the family babysitter entertaining her younger brothers and sister while her parents are working. It's a huge responsibility for a young girl.

Her mother is expecting another baby. She works hard all day and comes home at night to cook and clean holding on through all to her dream of moving into a beautiful house in the country that has room for everyone in the family. Do they have enough money to make the down payment? The question looms and Dad refuses to answer. He would much rather have another drink and after one drink and another drink and even another drink he turns mean and Aislinn waits and watches tense and fearful and hoping everything will be okay.

Inside herself she is trying so hard to do everything right. She cleans and cooks and watches the little ones and believes she can make her father change into the man she wishes he would be. But as Dad's commissions go down his drinking goes up and the insults and slaps start to multiply. The story reads like you are living inside the family of an alcoholic with all the inevitable dysfunction and fear. Will Aislinn stay locked in this prison or will she find a way to break free? Will her best friend Maizey choose the stuck up Sue Ellen as her new best friend? For any child who is living in this Hell, this book will be a mirror that will seem so familiar....almost as though the author could see into their private nightmare because she can and she does. For any child who wonders how it is to struggle against something you cannot change, here is a chance to understand the courage and the hope and the guilt that line this path. When she described wetting her bed at age twelve, you had the feeling she has a Masters degree in this subject. A courageous and valuable story.  Dream big! 273 pages

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(Updated: February 08, 2013)
This book is inspiring to me. It makes me feel like I can become something and be a part of the community in a way Aislinn was part of the community. This is one of the most inspiring books I have ever read.
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